Unhitching the Rover takes some practice.
G&Ts on tap, with some of the beautiful lemons
gifted to us by Roger at TasmanGreen
We walked past a couple friendly souls out with their metal detector and custom-made bucket digger, which has various sized holes to sift out sand and leave the treasure.
They were like a stage act, telling us they'd been hired by the local council to entertain tourists. Clearly they were occasionally successful (though not during our visit). The guy on the left had a giant solid gold pendant on a gold chain, made of gold he found in the bush. NZ has had some serious gold rushes.
The West Coast Gold Rush on the West Coast of New Zealand from 1864 to 1867 populated the area, which up till then had been visited by few Europeans. Gold was found near the Taramakau River in 1864 by two Māori, Ihaia Tainui and Haimona Taukau. In 1865–66 gold was discovered at Okarito, Bruce Bay (the scene of the Hunt's Duffer gold rush), around Charleston and along the Grey River.
Miners were attracted from the Central Otago Gold Rush, and from Victoria, Australia where the Victorian gold rush had nearly finished and by the end of 1864 there were an estimated 1800 prospectors on the West Coast, with many in the Hokitika area. Hokitika was in 1866 the most populous settlement in New Zealand with a population of more than 25,000, and boasted more than 100 pubs.
The late afternoon fall light was exquisite.
We took a walk up the modest Kaiteriteri Track and ran into Jane, staying at our campground, months on the road with her partner.
Jane told us about Freedom Camping, cost-free places where you can park as long as you're self-contained (have a toilet, etc).
Back to the caravan for supper and planning for tomorrow.