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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.

Monday, 6 February 2017

The steepest street in the world

It was almost as bad as being back in Australia and the south coast of Victoria with the temperature fluctuation. At one point in the afternoon, it had reached 30°. A first for this New Zealand trip. Then today it was back down to 17°. It was too hot though, at the higher temperature, goodness knows how we will cope when we get to Queensland. Hoping to see the Albatross flying later this afternoon and we were told that they prefer to fly in windy weather. So far today we have had hardly any!

So this morning we headed off to Dunelin to see the steepest street in the World. Officially placed in the Guinness book of records it beats the one in San Fransisco.

We also booked the Pacific Coast Train, Taieri Gorge Railway for tomorrow morning. Grabbed the last two spaces available for the 9.30am.

With time to kill before going on our wildlife tour at 4 pm we looked around the Chinese Garden. In our opinion, the one in Sydney was far superior but it killed an hour plus there was hardly anyone around. In fact, we noticed how dead the city was considering it was a Monday. Then we found out that the day was Waitangi Day when the treaty was signed by some Māori chiefs and representatives of the British Crown giving the Māori people the same rights as the British and it also recognised Māori ownership of their lands. It established a British Governor of New Zealand.

At 4pm we were picked up at Portabello outside the village store. The weather had deteriorated considerably and wet weather gear was needed. First stop was around a lake to see what birds were around. Everything from black swans, to spoonbills. Even with the coach's misted windows I was able to get some photos.

Pied Stilt


And even a Kingfisher
Next stop was the Albatross centre. Here we had exclusive viewing of the birds on nests and them flying. Conditions were perfect for them and more flew this afternoon then had done in over a week Great for us.

After a brilliant hour of watching these majestic birds, it was off to a private beach to view the fur seals and Sea Lions. To say the terrain was difficult was an understatement. Very steep hills, many steps and avoiding the juvenile bull Sea Lions all a bit challenging and what with that wind and rain....

Fur Seals

Sea Lions
 And at last, what I have been hoping to see a Yellow-eyed Penguin. Light was by now fading and conditions not great for photography but at least it is another critter I can tick off my list.

One of the chicks.

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