Fieldays 2018 Adult Entry price increase

Update 14/06/2018: Will no longer be attending this year’s Fieldays, everyone who had expressed interest to attend Fieldays with me have all since pulled out. Not worth me driving down there alone from Auckland.

Noticed that the Incorporated Society behind the National Fieldays has increased the Adult ticket price for this Year for those booking online via Stream Ticketing from $20.00 per Adult (+$5.00 booking per transaction) to $30.00 per Adult (+$0.90 booking fee per ticket). This represents roughly a 50% price increase over the preceding year if taking the scenario of booking online for a group of 4-5 together. Continue reading “Fieldays 2018 Adult Entry price increase”

Fieldays 2018 Adult Entry price increase

Waikato in the Autumn

Random spur of the moment Road trip down to Hamilton and surrounds. Click picture to access Gallery…

Waikato River from the Italian Garden, Hamilton Gardens

While the Olympus TG-3 has served me well, the camera equipped with my Samsung S7 Active phone seems to have the TG-3 beaten hands down in the image quality department. The only thing the TG-3 has over my Phone is optical zoom. The Dynamic Range on the S7 Active is so far the best I’ve seen from any camera I’ve owned.

Waikato in the Autumn

Gulf Eco Charters Hen and Chicken Islands

Day boat tour on Gulf Eco Charters‘ Launch “Kokomo”, with Kurt Salmond and his Family. Click Picture below to access the Gallery on NUI.NZ

Taranga Island on aboard “Kokomo”

Departed Sandspit Yacht Club, around past Tawharanui where conditions was quite wavy, then direct to Taranga Island, part of the Hen and Chickens archipelago for our first snorkelling stop.

Then westward to the west side of the island where we anchored for a nice light lunch prepared by Clair (Kurt’s other half) of wraps and muffins.

We then cruised around north past West Chicken island before heading east towards Lady Alice Island where we anchored at Karimoko Bay for another spot of Snorkeling.

Aftewards, a short stop by Sail Rock and then a smooth cruise back to Base at Sandspit. Continue reading “Gulf Eco Charters Hen and Chicken Islands”

Gulf Eco Charters Hen and Chicken Islands

Waiarapa Exploration Road Trips

Over the New Year period, did a couple of road trips to explore around the Waiarapa region

First port of call was visiting Cape Palliser (Click Photo below to access gallery)

Cape Palliser Sunset

…and Putangirua Pinnacles (Click Photo below to access gallery) before diverting to Havelock North

Putangirua-Pinnacles

A later attempt to finish off the road trip was made shortly after my King Country Road Trip, where I went to visit the Gallipoli The Scale of our War Exhibition at Te Papa. Click picture below to access the Photo Gallery

Te Papa, Scale of War Exhibition

With a visit to Castle Point, Tinui ANZAC walkway and Stone Hedge Aotearoa (Click Photo below to access gallery) staying at Rusty Nail Lodge in Taihape on the way back.

Castle Point, Waiarapa

 

Waiarapa Exploration Road Trips

Car Rental Relocations

Occasionally I will take advantage of Rental Relocation deals to usually to do a road trip after a key event concludes (be it, after a hike or after a work trip) to explore an area that is new to me.

Kapiti Island from State Highway 1

After attending the Outdoor Training NZ AGM in Wellington in the weekend just past, A JUCY Condo Camper van was lined up in order to go back to Auckland, where we took turns driving it back to Auckland. It was perhaps my first time experiencing driving a Van and a Camper.

About the “JUCY” Campervan itself. Main points…

  • A pleasant and friendly lady at the Wellington JUCY branch showed us around the vehicle, how to operate the various functions and provided instructions for return.
  • The JUCY “Condo” camper we got was in a good state of repair, very clean and tidy
  • A Freshly cleaned set of Blankets and duvet supplied as well as towels for 4 occupants.
  • All Cutterly, Bowls, Plates and Cups have been supplied
  • The Vehicle included two LPG hobs including Pots, Pans and a kettle.
  • A Chemical toilet was included.
  • I did find the Vehicle to be quite thirsty, drinking about 12-13 litres of petrol every 100km at Highway speeds.
  • The Vehicle only had a 2.0 litre naturally aspirated petrol motor and given the size envelope and weight of the vehicle, it naturally struggled with hills, while noticeably labouring at 100km/h on the flat. Be prepared to pull over frequently to allow other traffic to pass on hilly sections.
  • Noticed the Camper was perhaps a little more tiring to drive than a regular rental car. (e.g. in comparison with a Toyota Corolla Hatch)

General observations about renting a car (not necessarily confined to Relocation deals)…

It is in my feeling that you really need at least 48 hours to make the Car rental relocation journey a worthwhile undertaking, otherwise it could all just driving point to point with little time to actually stop off on the way to look at things.

Many Excess reduction insurance options offered by many rental car companies excludes the likes…

  • Under Body and Overhead damage.
  • Hail damage
  • Tires / Punctures.
  • Windscreens
  • You may still be levied with a claim fee of about $75 even if you took up the $0 excess option.

Most standard Holidays parks charge per person in terms of Camping, not per site, bear that in mind when looking around for places to stay. Cabins and motel units at the same Holiday parks are usually advertised at the Twin rate.

If you have a self contained Camper van, it may be prudent financially to take advantage of that and Freedom Camp where ever possible and as long as it is legal to do so.

Car Rental Relocations

Ranger says No

Relatively short Multiday Trip to Tama Lakes, Waihohonu Hut and Oturere hut and back out to Desert Road. Was going to go around to Mangetepopo Hut and complete the Northern Circuit though an updated 11:00 a.m. Weather report upon reaching Oturere Hut, the Ranger advised us not to proceed due to dangerously high wind gusts.

Click photo below to access the gallery…

Mount Ruapehu

Hut Rangers, Doug and Horse, who we met on the trail, were fantastic.

A dip in the Springs near Waihohonu Hut provided some much needed refresh and temporarily removed the pain of my Left foot.

Ranger says No

Diwali + Blossoms Assorted photos

Random Assortment of pictures from the Diwali Festival and some blossoms at Cornwall Park. Click image below to access photos…

Resene Sponsored Diwali sign

The Diwali Auckland Festival this year was perhaps sightly smaller than in years preceding, though I thought was still certainly worth a visit.

Ended up walking into the Equippers worship service by accident, thinking it was part of the festival.

Diwali + Blossoms Assorted photos