Saturday, 8 February 2014

Shaky Eketahuna!

Our caravan club had a rally scheduled at Eketahuna where the recent earthquake was centred.  Do we or don't we? What the heck we could be anywhere we just hope the after shocks will not upset our weekend. Robin and Jenny had arrived an hour or so before us and there were just the two of us for Wednesday night.  The others were due to arrive the next day.

Walking around the cliff top from the camp into Eketahuna we had a good view down into the farmers paddock where they were busy haymaking.

Looking down on the riverLooking down on the river.Hay making in progress.Hay making in progress.Both ends, mmmm!Both ends, mmmm!

We then took a drive around the surrounding districts to view any damage from the earthquake.  The decision was then made to visit ‘Blue Haze’ for afternoon tea.  What a lovely place.

Lavender Farm at Mangatainoka Lavender Farm at Mangatainoka.

It was here that we both spotted a beautiful painting of a gypsy caravan on the bottom of a fry pan hanging on the wall.  We tried to purchase it from the owner who wouldn't part with it, but she put us on to the artist herself.  A replica of this is now hanging on our kitchen wall.

Gypsy Caravan Frypan at Lavender Farm

Later on in the long weekend, between light showers, some of us wandered back into town to visit the local antique and gift shop.

Duck your head Bill!Duck your head Bill!

Wednesday, 5 February 2014


After a detour through Marton and a compulsory stopover at the NZMCA park there we decided to head for Feilding, a town we hadn’t visited for many years.

Town Square FeildingTown Square Feilding

While there we made a visit to the local movie theatre owned by the proprietors of our local Focal Point Cinema.  The reason we must view ‘The Railwayman” starring Colin Firth and Nicole Kidman.  We all know what a railway buff Derek is but this movie was set in Burma where we had visited several years ago and it brought back many memories.

The Cattle Market at Feilding.The Cattle Market at Feilding, the largest in New Zealand.

We had decided to stay at the Coach House Museum which is a NZMCA pop and boy were we impressed with the fantastic venue.

The Coach House Museum Feilding.The Coach House Museum Feilding.

Coach House

Only a short walk into the centre of Feilding we were most impressed by our accommodation for the next couple of nights.


We were lucky enough to receive a personal viewing of all the Feilding archives that are stored in the building.  Not normally open to the public we felt privileged to be shown through.

Personal tour of The Archives.Personal tour of The Archives.

All the records are stored in a strict temperature controlled environment.  The humidity is controlled to protect the old records dating back into the 1800’s to prevent deterioration.

IMG_8980Strictly temperature controlled archives.IMG_8983A model of the original coach.IMG_8985A bygone era!Hello who's this?Hello who's this?This piece of an old tree trunk has grown around this piece of machinery over the years.This piece of an old tree trunk has grown around this piece of machinery over the years.IMG_8994Yeah Right!Coah House Museum FeildingGood bye to Fielding.  We will be back.

On to Eketahuna for a caravan rally before heading home.

Sunday, 2 February 2014

Taranaki Falls

Despite their name these falls are not found in the Taranaki region, but on the slopes of Mount Ruapehu in Tongariro National Park.

IMG_8957Doesn't he look grumpy after his walk to Taranaki Falls?

After leaving Tongariro Holiday Park we decided to head for Whakapapa Village and see if we could find a park big enough for Gypsy Rover, so that we could attempt the 2 hour round trip to Taranaki Falls.  We were lucky to find a park behind the Chateau Tongariro and after changing into our walking shoes we headed off.

Home of the Tongariro ChateauHome of the Tongariro ChateauChateau Tongariro at WhakapapaChateau Tongariro on the slopes of Mount Ruapehu at Whakapapa Village.

We had been advised by a couple of German tourists that there are two ways to do the round trip.  They advised walking past the first entrance and heading further up the hill to the second.

IMG_8936Off he goesIMG_8937Boards covering part of the swampy area of the walk.

This was good advice as the trip is easier walking from this end.  We walked passed several tourists struggling on their way to the falls as they had started at the other end. 

IMG_8939Rare Mountain Daisy on the slopes of Mount RuapehuWouldn't stand there if I was you!Wouldn't stand there if I was you!

We had no problems and the reason for the advice was there are 130 steps by the falls that are easier to descend than ascend.

Mount Ruapehu slopes - only a trickle at the momentMount Ruapehu slopes - only a trickle at the moment.

Our timing was pretty well spot on too, just over 2 hours later we arrived back at the motorhome and headed off for the Marton NZMCA camp.  We were lucky there as we managed to occupy the last site available. The place was fuller than we have ever seen before. Shows what a popular place it is.