Ry & J's South Pacific Tour '05 travel blog

Ry & J with "tent"

J & Annie with "tent"

Tip Top "Tippy"

Waterfall in Peel Forest

Hilly climb in Peel Forest

River Valley View Peel Forest

Enormous Old Tree

Ry & J headed back to camp

Finally have a bit of time to do some uploading. So after our late arrival in Christchurch due to a delayed flight, Ry & I got to city center at about 3 am. We walked around until we found a park type area that had a creek running through that had a small island on it. We waded across and slept there for a few hours. The next day we met up with Ann Marie, a friend from Australia who we are traveling NZ with. We also started the search for a car to purchase and had a good prospect lined up for a morning lookover. Stayed that night in a nice hostel and our roommate happened to have done a quite a bit of NZ so offered us many helpful suggestions. Ry, Annie, Oasin (our Irish roommate for the night), and I headed out to find a place to have a drink and found a great Irish bar with about 25 musicians who gather weekly to play. Had a great time and finally had a decent beer after not finding a single respectable beer in all of OZ. The next morning we met up with our home for the next 6 weeks, Tippy. She didn't have that name until later, but explanations will come. For $900 NZ ($675US) we bought a 93 Toyota Corolla wagon. She's a diesel and after some of the passes we've driven through, it's been nice to have the torque. Also, having a manual transmission was great when I left the lights on. Of course I had to push, but she started right up when Ry popped the clutch. We found a park to sleep in that night just north of Christchurch. Didn't get any pics of Christchurch as the camera was dead and we were more concerned with getting a car and some other logistics. Very neat and orderly city, English in style. We fell in love with a $3 fish and chips stand that operated next to a fish market. I think we ate there 3 times in a day and a half. Picked up a few supplies that next morning and headed west. Made our way to the Peel Forest and camped at a Department of Conservation (DOC) campground. Headed up on a wet and slick trail into the beautiful mountains and got a bit muddy and wet. Slept pretty well that night in our lean to/tent. It was considerably cheaper to buy a couple tarps and a few stakes and a bit of line. That night we went back into the small village for our first Tip Top experience. New Zealanders eat more ice cream per capita than any other nation in the world, even Italy. They have a couple major competitors Tip Top and Deep South, we've tried both. On average we've probably had ice cream 5 to 6 of every 7 days. Every small town has shop with it and it's almost always cheap. Still trying to figure out a favorite flavor as there are so many and you never know when you'll find a new one. So that's everything about arrival up to Peel Forest for the moment.

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