Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Mt Hutt Lodge and Region, New Zealand

Mt Hutt is both a mountain and a region. We stayed at Mt Hutt Lodge which is near Rakaia Gorge where a jet boat operates, there is a caravan park and people seem to spend time dipping their fishing lines into the fast flowing, grey-blue waters.
 Sitting with the curtains of our room pulled aside, I can see Mt Hutt in all its majesty standing tall with a line of white snow on top, reminding us that it has been here forever and will be here long after we have gone. Clouds cover all but the top of the mountain and seem to be lingering today as there is little wind.

As I write, I can hear the jet boat powering up with the gutterell sound typical of such engines. Speed has always been an attraction to we bipedal land lovers and I guess it's the speed that attracts people to want to travel aimlessly up and down the river with the boat's hull bumping up and down and the too cool wind blowing through their hair. There doesn't seem to be anything else going for it. At least at an aviation show, you get to smell the aviation fuel and see much more sophisticated maneouvering.

The Lodge is older, as can be seen from the photograph above and consists of both hotel style, short-term rooms and four timeshare apartments that are fully self-contained. Ours is comfortable for two people but has sufficient table, chair and movement space for perhaps four or five.

Yesterday we drove via Arthur's Pass to Springfield. There is a train journey you can take from Christchurch to Greymouth, but it's expensive so we decided to drive so we could see more of the sights and have the freedom to come and go as we pleased, which we did. We stopped at several lookouts, went for a long walk about the Castle Hill rocks (see entrance photo) and had lunch at a quaint cafe at Arthur's Pass with free entertainment from a friendly kea bird that landed on our table and without waiting for an invitation began helping itself to the scraps left on our plates. Chris took some video footage of the kea, which is a mountain parrott only found in the south island of NZ. Unfortunately, it's too large to upload. The photo here of the kea sign below tells a little about them.

Arthur's Pass is spectacular with a viaduct, a concrete, overhead structure on part of the road to safeguard drivers from rock falls, and several lookouts. We'd love to see it in winter full of snow although I don't know that I'd want to be driving on wet roads up and down the pass. Also, I expect there would be many more people here making driving and parking etc a little more hazardous.

Talking of people, I'd like a $10 note for every Recreational Vehicle I've seen ... there are literally thousands of them ... and I haven't seen the lot. It's obviously the way to see NZ; rent an RV and drive all over the place.

The adventure continues.


No comments: