A Travellerspoint blog

February 2019

Maddie goes on holiday

Luke plays at Takaka Root's Bar

semi-overcast 16 °C
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In our travels the one bug bear we have consistently come up against is that we could not take Maddie with us as camp grounds just do not allow dogs there. Some have begun to make allowances in the off season, but overall this has been a hindrance for us taking off altogether. DOC do not allow dogs at their camps and these are some of our most popular sites.

We had the date for Luke's band "One Waka" to play at the Root's Bar in Takaka and then the next night in Murchison, so as he is leaving for USA on a skiing trip on Wednesday this seemed like a really good reason to head over there and be part of the young scene and groove to his music and bid him bon voyage. We wanted to try staying at the NZMCA sites where we can have dogs on a lead.
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Thursday afternoon we took off with our small dog accompanying us. She was not so settled at all, panting and jumping on and off my lap. We really did think that maybe we had made the wrong decision at this stage, not relaxed travelling.

We have embarked on this really strict diet- 3 weeks of severe restrictions on what we eat and drink. Going on holiday concurrent with this was always going to challenge us, as we usually let loose and enjoy our wine and cheeses while away (obviously hence the need for a diet!).One week in and it was 'biting' pretty hard.Our first stop was the Motueka NZMCA park-right next to a cool store. So that night was listening to this thing drumming away accompanied by an incessant cricket, not a salubrious start.After our evening meal we unloaded our bikes and rode around the estuary. We have done this before but it is really seeing it in different light is always great for the photos.
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Before we left there had been several days warning of an impending storm making its way to the top of the south. I was anxious lest this storm hit us while in Takaka and the road over the hill was further damaged and we left stranded over there.But it seemed that as time got closer this storm had lost a lot of its sting. Driving over the hill, Maddie all of a suddenly got the hint that sitting still on my lap made travelling enjoyable for us both actually.

While here last time we had seen the NZMCA camp at Pohara wharf, which is where we headed.Our time there was such a friendly time with the camaraderie between the people awesome.it is hugely popular and the vehicles are packed in closely, which made me worry that if we left at night to see Luke in Takaka we would return to find our spot taken. No worries at all. The neighbours either side were eager to keep our spot for us, which we had marked with our unloaded bikes.
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In the afternoon we had biked to Tata Beach but got no further as there was a very strong wind which made biking (even with batteries) just not nice.
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Friday night and we got ready to go to the pub, how long is it since we've done that.We needed to park the van in the supermarket carpark over the road-with Maddie locked inside. Another first for her, being locked in the van while we leave her there.Sal went and checked on her a couple of times and altho very very pleased to see her, seemed to be ok with it.The band did not start playing till 10pm which made sitting there drinking water with lemon drag out somewhat. But the band, when they started playing, are a slick unit, polished and good music-albeit extremely loud.I stood at the back of the room where it was doable for me. Sal was at the front by a speaker as she was recording a song that Luke and written.Once they had played the song we were off back to Pohara and bed. But as luck would have it the camp is beside a working port and there were boats unloading all night as well as vehicles going past us on the gravel road all night. Another sleepless night.
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Saturday we left and returned to Takaka where we met up with Luke briefly, then went to the market in town before heading back over the hill. Maddie is a pro by this stage and sat quietly on my lap watching where we are heading..At the bottom of the Takaka Hill we veered right and went up the road to the Resurgence i.e. the source of the Riwaka River.We were both feeling exhausted and depleted with lack of sleep and food so after lunch while Sal walked to the Source I snoozed in the van with Maddie (a DOC site). We then went back to Kina Beach by Mapua as we have been there before and know that it is dog friendly.We found it very full and we were asked to repark closer to allow more vehicles in. The weather was windy and cold by then, so no biking. Here it is quiet, non industrial and alot cooler so a good night's sleep. In fact we woke to a thunder storm and rain at long last.
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We can't go without visiting Mapua Wharf, even though we cant have ice creams or coffee.Lovely interesting shops that we never leave without a purchase of jewellery or something and today is no exception.Then onto see Rick and Maureen, who live at the top of a very steep drive. Neat to see them again.We can see plumes of smoke on the distant hills from their place where the fires are still smoldering.Our drive home is uneventful. We call in to see Tim and Anna and the kids and then we are at home again in sub 20 degrees
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Posted by Sallyj66 23:11 Archived in New Zealand Comments (1)

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