Here’s the next installment of our family trip posts, from the 11-day trip we took in late December 2020 and early January 2021. If you need to catch up, here are the previous posts: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, and Day 4.
Our fifth day was New Year’s Day, so we had a very relaxed morning and enjoyed talking and playing games with the friends we were staying with. Just before lunch, we finally took off, and headed for Dunedin, our next stop!
The area around Twizel, the Mackenzie Basin, is so dry. I loved seeing the contrasts there with the mountains in the background!
But despite being dry, there are a number of rivers and creeks that flow through the area—coming from the Southern Alps. Some of these have been diverted into canals, and after driving for a while, we came across a lake and dam, so we stopped to have a look.
The dam was impressive—one of the largest ones I’ve seen in person, I think. There were only two turbines going—we must not need as much electricity in the summer?
The part I found most interesting was the fish race, and the artificial 1 km-long creek they’ve created for trout to spawn in. That was something I don’t remember seeing before. Unfortunately, it looks like I didn’t manage to get a picture of that specifically. The concrete structure that some of my brothers are climbing on, below, is one of the entrances to the race.
Then we went on, out through mountainous country, heading down to Dunedin. Again, a beautiful drive, full of contrasts as we got out of the drier middle part of the island and back closer to the east coast where they get more rain and things are green.
We got to the coast, and had to drive along there for a while, but we did make one stop—the Moeraki Boulders. The tide was coming in, and it was raining, but they were still fascinating to see! Something I’d love to stop to see again, if we happen to be going past with fine weather and a low tide.
I found the lines in the rocks where they are joined together especially interesting. It was also interesting to see the ones that had broken apart!
We arrived in Dunedin Friday evening, and stayed with friends there until Sunday afternoon. I didn’t get any pictures those two days, because it rained (more like bucketed down!) nearly the entire time, and we just enjoyed time together, playing games and talking.
I did get one picture—of my sisters and me in the matching dresses I was able to finish just before we left on the trip. What fun! I’m so thankful God chose to give me sisters, after many years thinking His answer was “no”!
After we left on Sunday, we headed south to the Catlins, where some other friends of ours live. We hadn’t ever visited them at their home, despite almost getting there one other time and knowing each other for years. On the way, we hit a cloudburst and nearly had to stop driving for a few minutes—it was really coming down! The river next to us was full and then overflowing, but thankfully the water level didn’t make it up to the road.
Here’s a video I took of the flooding.
Stay tuned. More pictures coming up soon (hopefully!). 🙂