Saturday, June 19, 2010

Freshman Fifteen

Really more like the freshman five, but I've still managed to pack on more weight in New Zealand than I should be carrying. As I would never make a very good dieter, I began marathon training last week. This morning (in the rain), I ran up Te Mata Peak--30 minutes from our place to the entrance, and another 20 minutes to the top...down was a wee bit faster. The view from the top was not stellar today.

The Hawke's Bay Marathon is on September 4th. The start is walkable from our house. You are all invited to run with me.

Aside: New Zealand foods that are making me fat include
1) Fish and Chips (The best of which are found at Village Fish and Chips in Havelock North)
2) Chicken and Chips (Mmmmmn Hot Chick)
3) Pie!!! (These are like pot pies in the US, only generally smaller...bakeries sell them, and you can eat them with your hands.)
4) Probably something Nico is cooking.

In other news: I am now a fully registered New Zealand pharmacist.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

View from Te Mata Peak (take 2)

[You must click the picture for full panoramic effect.]

Friday, June 04, 2010


Alternative title: Laughing at the sunrise like he's been up all night.

Technically, tramping requires an overnight stay, but as we were walking to a hut where most people were staying overnight, this certainly felt like a tramp.

Sunrise Track
seemed like a good place to start exploring the Ruahines, as the government website recommends the walk for those of low to moderate fitness. Once again, I am reminded that "low fitness" is much fitter in NZ than in the US.

The entrance to the Ruahines is through private farm land...which is what most of New Zealand looks like today. Beautiful, but only if you try not to think about all the native forest that was slashed and burned to make room for the sheep.

Just a few steps past the gate, and things get even greener.

One of my better pictures on the day:

This is Sunrise Hut. These huts are all over New Zealand, and basically allow you to tramp around the country without carrying a tent. Sunrise Hut is on the posh side (and costs $14 NZ a night). You get a bunk/mattress (in a room with a bunch of other bunks), a heater, a kitchen...probably a pit toilet somewhere.

We couldn't figure out why there was ice on the ground, as we were burning up from our 2 hour (and 1300 metre) climb.

I could post pictures from the top all day long; here are a couple of especially good ones: