Showing posts from March, 2017

Our Queenstown Adventures

We planned four days in Queenstown to make sure we had plenty of time for all of the fun things we wanted to try.  First up on the way into town was jet boating in the Shotover River.  Phil and I had gone jet boating before so sat this one out with Amanda, but it was great just sitting and soaking in the scenery.  Missy and Anita had a blast on their ride around the river.  Jet boating was invented in New Zealand and what makes it so unique is it can travel through very shallow water and do 360 degree spins.

The next thing on the list after jet boating was paragliding.  I've been wanting to do this for several years now, because I figured it was the closest thing to feeling like a bird.  We tried to go in the early afternoon, but the winds weren't right so we came back later that day.  We rode the gondola up and then had a 10 minute hike to the launch site.
 We were paired up with pilots and they fitted us up with helmets and weird giant diaper bag things.  Then, Anita and her p…

Wandering Around Wanaka

We took it easy the day after the big race, starting with a nice lie in.  Then I took the crew to see the Wanaka Tree.  What's the Wanaka Tree, you ask?  That's what they asked too.  I kept seeing pictures of a tree in Lake Wanaka - it was on logos, pinterest, everywhere.  So I figured it was something we just had to see.  Turns out it was a little tree in the lake that looks a little cooler if you get the camera angle just right.   Luckily it was on the way to a winery, which was a much better stop as far as scenery goes.  
We were still thirsty so headed towards a brewery we had seen.  We stopped and grabbed sandwiches and stopped at th embanks of the Clutha River.  The water was a beautiful turquoise colour and it was a great spot to have an impromptu picnic. We finally made it to Wanaka Beerworks and tried a little bit of everything.  It was in the back of a toy museum and next to an airplane and machinery museum, so there were some interesting sights around.
We had a nice din…

Challenge Wanaka

The main event of our trip to New Zealand was the Challenge Wanaka Triathlon.  Phil was signed up for the full distance and we somehow convinced our friend Anita to do her first half distance there.  The day before the race was filled with jitters and preparation.  They checked in and got their race bags, which they spent hours filling with their swim, bike, and run gear.  Each race has their own set of rules of what is required, and we discovered at 5:30 that evening that this race required a torch (head lamp) and reflective tape.  So we made a quick trip to the hardware store right before they closed and found them.  Much to my amazement, New Zealand makes Australia look inexpensive.  The little roll of reflective tape cost $40!  But now that they were all set, it was time for an early night in preparation for the early morning. The race started at 7 am, but check in closed at 6 so we had to get up at 4:30.  The one benefit of such an early start was we got to see a beautiful sunrise…