Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Dolphin Bay Track: Two Hours Return (aka A Three Hour Cruise)

Virtually every signpost at the head of a hiking track in NZ gives its name and the time it will take to complete the walk. A two-hour return means round trip, there and back. If you're us, you always take this with a large grain. We love walking, but we're not mountain goats.

Still, when we set out on this lovely path, breathing in a brand new biome, everything seemed possible.

It was a most thrilling hike, our first in NZ this year. Don't let the path below fool you like it did us, though. There were numerous vertical ups and downs, working all kinds of muscles laid to waste during the brutal Chicago winter, too frigid or icy to be walking outside. (Also, netflix.)

Whew. By the time we reached this point we felt the cooling breezes off the water, invigorating us for the rest of the hike to Dolphin Bay

NZ flora (puts hand over heart)

Epiphyte? Am guessing yes. (NZ has an epiphyte network!) Anyway, at some point on this alleged two-hour return hike I reminded Art that it's the journey, not the destination and we turned around, probably 2/3 of the way there. When we got back to the car I guessed we'd walked about 90 minutes. (There's a math problem in here somewhere.)

Heading back to our lodgings, we stopped in the tiny hamlet of Mulberry Grove, just around the bend from Tryphena. Solar panels are de rigeur. This is the cafe, grocery, and meeting place under one roof.

Outside, a reminder

And the local library.

Here's the grocery we'll stock up at Friday when we head to a new location a bit farther north. The proprietor told us the boat with fresh supplies comes in tomorrow around noon.

Flat white time
Art reported on his fitbit stats: we did 72 floors and five miles. No wonder we feel like limp rags. It's going to take more than three days for us to regain our pre-polar vortex muscles.

My last map of Great Barrier Island didn't show up in the email version, so I'm re-posting it here with a link to click if you can't view.

Tonight we went to the Barrier Social Club for supper, encouraged to do so by our host Joanne. She told us the club was started in the 70s when a group of people wanted to open a pub but it was prohibited, so they did this instead.

Classic pub scene with 70s music
(American woman, get away from me-e)

 This sign made me laugh. A play on pretentious beer?

For supper, red snapper with crispy potatoes and salad. Undoubtedly the meal you're served in heaven.


  1. I like "Caution Mind That Child". Reminds me of "Feed Your Baby". The library is fairly small!! Thinking of you two and your adopted country today. :( :( :(

  2. Thank you, Brookerz. Our hearts are breaking for NZ.