Monday, June 25, 2012

Forgotten World Highway trip 25 June 2012

Monday, June 25, 2012

oldbearnews editor Up late and a quick breakfast – packed and went on our way.
First stop – the I-Site for info! Decided to head to the beginning of the coastal walk! Trekked for 1.5 km and saw mostly warehouses on the beach. Very windy!! So headed back to car and drove to the other end of the walkway!! There is this new bridge!! It frames Mt Egmont nicely  I F  you can see it!!  Should have bought the postcard and used that as an image instead.  The blue sky lasted 10 minutes then the next thunderous cloud rolled in and soaked everything. Next stop, the local Airport - no souvenir's there either and no New Plymouth badge!! Airport is very tiny and guess not very busy!! From there we decided to head towards Wanganui, and saw near at the bridge (nice park area) the Fitzroy Scout Den!!
Drove out of New Plymouth and saw perfect double rainbow! Slammed on brakes and wanted to take a pic – only to have a panic attack and phone call back to Motel.  Eventually found mamabear's camera buried inside the large suitcase.  Rainbow had gone by then, sighs.  From there we headed out of town and passed many coast towns.  Stopped at the Maui Gas Field Visitor Center – a whole building about info on how and where and why for the gas and oil– no living soul in sight!! Very educational and there was this scale model giving good overview on how and why and where!! Still very rolling hills – from satellite you would expect flat country – similar to Canterbury!!
Anyhow – stopped at Opunake – disappointing – not much there, many shops closed. So headed on towards Wanganui.  Eventually stopped at Yarrows bakery at Manaia and ate what we bought next to a field just out of town while being buffeted by rain and wind!! (they also have a sign on road – not often known but it is two bread buns!!)  Bought 10 litres of petrol at Waverly to get us to Wanganui and then eventually found Wanganui!! Roads to find where Motel is  located was very easy – (queen) Victoria (which is the main shopping drag – as it turns out) and from there a left turn into Somme dr.  Easy.  Dropped bags at Motel and headed back to I-Site.  Picked up a map and some clues as to places to visit!!
Headed across the river and into a tunnel and up the elevator!! Tunnel very Echo-y!! Had fun with echos at various lengths of the Tunnel. On top – very,  very windy!! Climbed half of the stairs and decided that lighting not great – so may go there in the morning when the sun is in the east and (hopefully less windy). Back down the elevator and into town! Turns out the tunnel / elevator was build to develop a subdivison on the hill and make access easy. Same old story, once the road was open and cars got better less and less people use the public transport (elevator) and it is now "converting" or better sidelining itself as a tourist attraction.  It is one of ONLY two Earthbound elevator's - the other - I think and don't qoute me on that - is in Mount blanc ?!?!  Walked all the length of Victoria street – saw many shops and stopped at a tourist Souvenir shop where we did FIND a badge for Wanganui!! Wohooo.
Other place we bought was material for a quilt and (unsuccessful) Postie plus and Whitcoulls!! Time to go back and hunt for Dinner!! Thai place closed so decided to see if we can get a pre- cooked chuck from Countdown with some salad (which we did) and for afters a weightwatchers chocolate cheesecake!! Ate that at the Motel – along with cheese and the obligatory bottle of  white / red medicinal drink for us!! I ended up with a cheeky litle red!! --->                                                                  See ----->
Gotta finish the bottles!!  News and catch up time afterwards!!  Wanted to take a cruise on the steam paddle boat up the Wanganui river - but disappointingly they drive only on weekends during winter!! I really wanted to cruise up the river – it is supposed to be very scenic!!

 bear print

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