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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Another adrenaline rush

Crashing waves, the song of the Cicadas and the call of Oystercatchers were the only sounds that could be heard from the campground. No traffic noise at all and that was because of the night closure of highway1.

 7.30pm to 6 am No road traffic because of the highway restrictions.
Access along State Highway 1 to the south of Kaikoura is restored with night-time restrictions. These will remain until all slip faces have been stabilised and traffic signals have been installed along a 1km coastal section of the route where there is single-lane access only.
Access will be two-way and only during daylight hours, 6am to 8pm. The last vehicles will be admitted to travel along SH1 south from Peketa at 7.30pm. Vehicles travelling north from Christchurch are advised to leave the city by 5.30pm to ensure they get through to Kaikoura before the road closes at Oaro at 7.15pm.

We got up late! The one morning I wanted to be up early to see the sunrise over the sea and I missed it.
Lovely day promised and we were not disappointed.
 It was therefore gone 9am before we set off for Christchurch This was to be our final destination before flying back to Sydney...or that was what we thought! Ian had noticed another 'adrenaline rush' on a Jetboat at Akaroa. Thinking it was in Christchurch we phoned and booked on the 13.30. Made Christchurch by 11am, stopped to put the directions to Akaroa in the sat nav only to discover Akaroa was another 75km further South! Oh 'eck we thought, best put a spurt on. There was only minimal traffic on the road and we kept a steady 90km/h but part of the way was a long and winding steep climb over the hills with quite a few hairpin bends on the route and it was worse on the way down with the brakes having to be applied frequently. We were lucky to reach 40km/h on this stretch, down to 25km/h on those hairpins.








We made Akaroa by the skin of our teeth, again had to forgo lunch and a drink and no sooner had we booked in when we had waterproofs and lifejackets thrust at us and taken to the Jetboat. 50 minutes of speed, 360° turns and the occasional stop to show us the Cathedral cave, salmon farm and an obliging yellow-eyed penguin, before heading back soaked to the skin, very windblown but extremely glad we made the drive down to Akaroa.


Cathedral cave with the lava ridges and pumice formations.



Can anyone see an Elephant?



Opportunists waiting for an easy meal.

Would you believe the Queen stayed in this tin house when she came to visit NZ.

Looking out from Cathedral cave.


We will be back in Christchurch tomorrow and then stay until we return the campervan on Wednesday morning. Apart from cleaning the van inside and out, we may go on the Gondola with the views of the Canterbury plains and Southern alps.

Wildlife today,








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