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BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?

Bob the Postman 17 Sep 11 - 01:01 PM
gnu 17 Sep 11 - 01:32 PM
Gurney 17 Sep 11 - 03:59 PM
Wolfhound person 17 Sep 11 - 04:12 PM
vectis 17 Sep 11 - 04:58 PM
Little Robyn 17 Sep 11 - 06:30 PM
Little Robyn 17 Sep 11 - 06:44 PM
GUEST,Fossil at work 18 Sep 11 - 01:28 AM
GUEST,Fossil at work 18 Sep 11 - 02:29 AM
vectis 18 Sep 11 - 01:00 PM
Fossil 18 Sep 11 - 06:54 PM
Bob the Postman 18 Sep 11 - 09:41 PM
Wolfhound person 19 Sep 11 - 07:07 AM
gnu 19 Sep 11 - 02:12 PM
Gurney 19 Sep 11 - 03:46 PM
Gurney 19 Sep 11 - 04:47 PM
Bob the Postman 20 Sep 11 - 08:01 PM
Gurney 20 Sep 11 - 11:42 PM
Wolfhound person 21 Sep 11 - 05:03 AM
Little Robyn 21 Sep 11 - 07:27 AM
Roger the Skiffler 21 Sep 11 - 08:32 AM
bill\sables 30 Sep 11 - 09:37 AM
Little Robyn 01 Oct 11 - 04:22 AM
Bob the Postman 01 Oct 11 - 11:07 AM
Gurney 01 Oct 11 - 03:54 PM
ChrisJBrady 02 Oct 11 - 03:45 PM
Gurney 02 Oct 11 - 05:08 PM
Bob the Postman 03 Oct 11 - 10:17 AM
Bob the Postman 16 Nov 11 - 01:58 AM
Gurney 16 Nov 11 - 12:53 PM
Gurney 16 Nov 11 - 01:08 PM
vectis 16 Nov 11 - 02:54 PM
Little Robyn 16 Nov 11 - 07:41 PM
bill\sables 17 Nov 11 - 01:50 AM
Bob the Postman 17 Nov 11 - 03:21 AM
Gurney 17 Nov 11 - 03:09 PM
Fossil 17 Nov 11 - 04:39 PM
gnu 17 Nov 11 - 04:53 PM
Bob the Postman 18 Nov 11 - 02:12 AM
mcpiper 18 Nov 11 - 02:26 AM
Gurney 18 Nov 11 - 09:39 PM
Little Robyn 19 Nov 11 - 02:55 AM
Bob the Postman 19 Nov 11 - 03:13 AM
Bob the Postman 19 Nov 11 - 03:28 AM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 19 Nov 11 - 03:33 AM
Fossil 19 Nov 11 - 03:36 AM
Sandra in Sydney 19 Nov 11 - 08:29 AM
GUEST,Fossil at work 19 Nov 11 - 11:32 PM
Bob the Postman 20 Nov 11 - 03:29 AM
Gurney 20 Nov 11 - 03:51 PM
ChrisJBrady 20 Nov 11 - 05:27 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 21 Nov 11 - 01:29 AM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 21 Nov 11 - 01:47 AM
Bob the Postman 21 Nov 11 - 04:13 AM
ChrisJBrady 21 Nov 11 - 07:14 AM
Gurney 21 Nov 11 - 03:04 PM
mcpiper 22 Nov 11 - 01:57 AM
Fossil 22 Nov 11 - 02:50 AM
Bob the Postman 25 Nov 11 - 01:08 AM

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Subject: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 17 Sep 11 - 01:01 PM

Mrs. the Postman and I will be making our big post-retirement antipodean odyssey (while we still have our health, dear) to New Zealand and environs from November 2011 to April 2012. We are given to understand that, according to ancient Mayan prophecies, the world will end during this time period, but we will not let this cramp our style. We plan to buy a clapped out camper-van and tour around pretty much everywhere. We are outdoorsy young codgers so tramping and birding are top of our list of things to do. Any advice?

Then there's music. I'm your typical grey-bearded amateur folkie, good for a couple of songs at an open mike but you might not want to sit through a whole set of me. I'd like to check out folk-club/coffee-house/song-circle venues wherever I happen to be. And I'll need to buy a budget guitar when I get to Auckland.

Any and all tips will be gratefully received.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: gnu
Date: 17 Sep 11 - 01:32 PM

Warning : the following is PI. Reader discretion is advised.

Learn about earthquake preparedness.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Gurney
Date: 17 Sep 11 - 03:59 PM

Kiwifolk.com.

Auckland Folk Music Festival at the end of January. See you there.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Wolfhound person
Date: 17 Sep 11 - 04:12 PM

Contact Little Robyn.
See how many possums you can convert to roadkill.

Have a great time.

Paws


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: vectis
Date: 17 Sep 11 - 04:58 PM

Whare Flats festival is over the New Year on South Island.

Mondays at The Bunker in Auckland very good

Fridays Titirangi singaround near Auckland friendly crowd.

Auckland Festival is already on this thread.

Tauranga area has a couple of sessions that are supposed to be good.

Nelson Folk Club on alternate Fridays, lovely crowd.

Hamilton Folk Club - not been there yet but the organisers are lovely.

Check out "Kiwi folk" as an online database for the many other clubs and sessions.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Little Robyn
Date: 17 Sep 11 - 06:30 PM

Apart from 'Art Deco' buildings and general tourist stuff, Hawke's Bay doesn't offer much for folkies except a Wednesday night session at The Rose and Shamrock in Havelock North and even that is turned off when sport is on - for example, World cup rugby.
As Chris has suggested, check the Kiwifolk site - here.
As long as you start in Auckland, contact Roger and Hilary at Devonport and go from there.
Robyn


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Little Robyn
Date: 17 Sep 11 - 06:44 PM

Mike Morony has written some advice for folkies touring NZ which may be helpful - also on the Kiwifolk site.
Click here.

Robyn


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: GUEST,Fossil at work
Date: 18 Sep 11 - 01:28 AM

If you are here that long, you will *not* want to stay in or around Auckland (or "dorkland" as it is known anywhere else in NZ...). You will want to do the trip around the very scenic bits of the North Island - of which there are lots - and then get yourselves to Wellington to do the trip over to the South Island, the sublime Marlborough Sounds, the Remarkables, the tramping tracks and everything else that you have seen in tourist photos.

Which means you will pass my door at some point. PM me and I'll fill you in on what to do in the Wellington area, there's heaps of folkie stuff going on *all* the time. And if you can coincide your trip with Labour Day, w/e of 22-23-24/10/11, there's the Wellington Folk Festival, which is generally a lot of fun.

And whenever, if you want to stay over a while, you're welcome.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: GUEST,Fossil at work
Date: 18 Sep 11 - 02:29 AM

Oh, forgot to mention: buying a campervan is pretty easy. many backpackers use old vans and sell them on when their time in NZ is up. Our own van, a very cosy Toyota Lucida 4WD was bought off a desperate German lad who was on the plane the next day. Needless to say we drove a hard bargain, but repaid him in other ways by introducing him to a law firm in Brussels where he now has a job...

When I get home I'll put up the URL of a backpackers site on which many vans are advertised. You should be able to find someone who's leaving soon and the prices asked tend to be directly proportional to the length of time the vendor has remaining in NZ. Bargain like crazy and you will probably be rewarded.

The other possibly is www.trademe.co.nz, the NZ auction site which has thousands of cars and vans for sale. Prices here are general values and while the possibility of finding a steal exists, it isn't quite as likely, since you are in competition with everyone else in NZ who's looking for a ride.

The thing to look out for in NZ - apart from the general cautions which go with buying an elderly vehicle anywhere - is that the WoF (Warrant of Fitness) is current, and hopefully that it covers the time of your stay. This also applies to the registration, but if you have a WoF on the vehicle, getting or renewing a rego is easy and (by UK standards) fairly cheap. Make sure that the vendor is prepared to go through the transfer of ownership, or you will have bureacratic problems.

Unless you are a very competent mechanic, avoid like the plague any vehicle described as "rego on hold" (= no WoF, probably no hope of getting one); "as-is-where-is" (= a junker).

Good luck!


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: vectis
Date: 18 Sep 11 - 01:00 PM

Remember that old camper vans and motor homes need a WEF (warranty of electrical fitness) and need to be gas checked and certified if appliances are fitted, especially if they are due when you are there or if you want to be able to sell the van on.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Fossil
Date: 18 Sep 11 - 06:54 PM

I'd endorse what vectis says, up to a point. Depends if you want a "campervan" - in the sense of a motorcaravan, with built in cooker, shower, toilet, etc: yes you'd need all the certification he mentions.

However a lot of people do it the other way, i.e. go camping with a van, stay on campsites or wild-camp, sleeping in the vehicle but cooking on portable stoves. Which is what we tend to do. Though wild-camping is getting a bad press in NZ at present and lots of councils are generating bye-laws against it, it can still be done and is done a lot. DoC campsites are cheap, basic facilities, but in conservation areas (generally wild and beautiful). Details are easy to find.

The website below offers lots of advice, as well as having details of vans and cars for sale. Very often you can pick up camping gear as part of the deal

http://www.backpackerboard.co.nz/noticeboard/cars-campervans.php

And for buying guitars, use the trademe.co.nz website while you are in Auckland or just troll the CashConverters shops (there are lots of them) until you find something you like.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 18 Sep 11 - 09:41 PM

Wow, what a haul. Thanks for the tips and please keep 'em coming. Fossil, I'll be in touch when we know more about our itinerary. I spent several months youth hosteling and tramping in NZ back in the Muldoon era, so it will be interesting so see what's changed and what has stayed the same. Are there still blokes in black singlets wandering the bush toting mountain mule packsacks?

Gnu, I'm all over the earthquake thing. My head is well protected by a pair of tin ears and as for the other vital bits, I picked up a pair of Kevlar boxer shorts at the garage sale local mountain bike legend Lucky Forkbender had when he needed to raise money for his new mobility scooter


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Wolfhound person
Date: 19 Sep 11 - 07:07 AM

Fig and honey ice cream.

Ice cream generally. What costs 2 UKP here is available for about 60 cents NZ - ie about 1/6th the price. And it tastes better. Roadside fruit and veg stalls.

Mt Taranaki. Spectacular, go up it a ways.

Paws


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: gnu
Date: 19 Sep 11 - 02:12 PM

Bob... and everyone else. It was a poor joke, but I kinda figger NZers are tough as nails and that kinda joke is right up their alley. Stiff upper lip Brit descendant humour kinda thing. I hope I didn't offend anyone but ya can't apologize BEfore ya make a joke.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Gurney
Date: 19 Sep 11 - 03:46 PM

Never heard of Aucklanders being called dorks before. Usually it is JAFAs.
Just Another Fu**ing Aucklander.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Gurney
Date: 19 Sep 11 - 04:47 PM

What has changed since Muldoon?   
Crime. Not changed, exactly, just a lot more of it. Don't leave possessions in vehicles, don't wander quiet city places in the small hours. It is not frightening, you just have to remember that certain individuals prey on tourists.

I've bought bargain vehicles from departing tourists by making a low, firm written offer that was good for 48hours only. I bought a good Jack and Danny Brothers dreadnaught on Trademe for $82. I actually bought three guitars between $55 and $90, all usable, all Chinese.
A useable Fender/Epiphone is about $200 new.

If you need a local agent to take some pressure off, I live in an Auckland suburb, and I LIKE dealing on Trademe.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 20 Sep 11 - 08:01 PM

I suppose that back in the day I was the sort of tourist who made locals nervous if I was on the street with them in the small hours.   

I remember going to a movie one Sunday evening and coming out at 9:30 to find that the busses had stopped running and I had an hour's walk back to the hostel.

And, ah yes, the ice cream! Fig and honey sounds exquisite, but I will never forget my first taste of mango ice cream, at a dairy bar somewhere in Morningside.

Gurney, thanks for the tip about Trademe. I just had a poke around there and, yes, there's plenty of affordable guitars listed. Might very well take you up on the agent thing. We're thinking of going to earth in St Heliers for a couple of weeks upon arrival to let the jet lag dissipate. Looks like will be way down south by the time of the Auckland festival, sadly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Gurney
Date: 20 Sep 11 - 11:42 PM

Wise, Bob, to have a rest. A couple of years ago, an English sports fan arrived, hired a van, and took off with his mates. Then he fell asleep at the wheel, killed a family and injured some of his passengers, who were also asleep. He wasn't a hoon, he just underestimated jetlag.
Don't bid against me on Trademe. There, I'm Gurneytoo.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Wolfhound person
Date: 21 Sep 11 - 05:03 AM

The fig and honey was somewhere on the road from Hamilton to Rotorua, and was highly recommended by locals, who insisted we should stop there even though it was early morning-ish.
It was worth it - but that was 10 years ago!

Paws


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Little Robyn
Date: 21 Sep 11 - 07:27 AM

I think the ice creams came from a tourist trap in Tirau. The place with the corrigated iron buildings shaped like animals, near Putaruru.
But you should look for Rush Munroe ice creams, made here in Hastings but now sold all round the country.
Robyn


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 21 Sep 11 - 08:32 AM

HOkey Pokey Icecream: higly recommended.

RtS


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: bill\sables
Date: 30 Sep 11 - 09:37 AM

Don't forget to buy "Hells Pizza" They taste great


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Little Robyn
Date: 01 Oct 11 - 04:22 AM

My daughter works at Hell's Pizzas - she's the original daughter from hell!
She's worked there for about 7 years now, cooking, doing prep, serving customers, making deliveries, she just loves it.
Only trouble is, the shifts are often only 5-6 hours long and the pay is terrible. But she's an expert on pizzas!
Robyn


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 01 Oct 11 - 11:07 AM

Ice cream. Pizza. No one's mentioned beer. Do they still have beer in NZ?


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Gurney
Date: 01 Oct 11 - 03:54 PM

Oh yes. Even some English and Irish brews in places.
Two big breweries, and lots of smaller breweries that you can sample the wares of. Some of the folk-clubs are not in pubs, though.
But you are coming to a comparatively big wine producing place, and you can do a sampling tour, or even just drop in at a winery...


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: ChrisJBrady
Date: 02 Oct 11 - 03:45 PM

No-one has mentioned birding with birds to spot which are rare and unique in the world.

Well you might not get to see a kakapo - there's only about 130 odd left on a couple of rat-free off-shore islands down south.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kakapo
http://www.kakaporecovery.org.nz/

BUT you CAN get to see real close up birds like the kokako, takahe (incl. George the only swimming one in the world!!), stitchbirds, wekas, kiwis, saddlebacks, black robins, kaka, fantails, tuis, etc., etc., on my most favourite of all places in the world - Tiri Tiri Matangi Island just offshore of Auckland (well a one hour ferry ride away).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tiritiri_Matangi_Island
http://www.tiritirimatangi.org.nz/
http://www.doc.govt.nz/parks-and-recreation/places-to-visit/auckland/hauraki-gulf-islands/tiritiri-matangi-scientific-reserve-open-sanctuary/
http://chrisbrady.itgo.com/takahe/takahe.htm

Tiri is how NZ used to be before the Maoris and later the Europeans all but wiped them out. The bush before that was a cacophony of sound - which can be experienced on Tiri, especially with the dawn chorus if you're staying overnight.

Then there's that other superb bird reserve off Stewart Island: Ulva Island. Everyone forgets there a third major island in the New Zealand chain.

http://danny.oz.au/travel/new-zealand/ulva-island.html
http://www.ulva.co.nz/

But during our last visit in Jan / Feb (2011) we were struck by the silence not only of NZ's forests and bush but also the gardens and parks of suburbia. I was continually reminded of Rachel Carson's books "Silent Spring" and "Beyond Silent Spring."

In NZ pesticides are sprayed around with total abandon by the councils and DOC - such as two of the most toxic in the world 1080, and 245T. It is my belief that its the far too liberal use of these poisons, apparently to control non-native possum populations, that has caused the demise of what's left of the native birds outside of the bird-reserves.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silent_Spring

Even when I lived in Taranaki and Auckland in the 1970s I remember the bush and gardens teaming with fantails, native pigeons (like large English wood pigeons, tuis, Indian mynah birds, and English sparrows, blackbirds and thrushes. Now only sparrows seem to be thriving.

CJB.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Gurney
Date: 02 Oct 11 - 05:08 PM

Always a problem, CJB. Possums and rats, both unintentionally introduced, predate on eggs and nestlings, and stoats, weasels and ferrets, all deliberately introduced, presumably by madmen, predate on everything.
My gardening neighbours have wiped out the thrushes (introduced) with their snail pellets, you never hear birdsong in farming areas, particularly vineyard. Here in suburban Auckland, the only natives I see are silvereyes, a wren-sized omnivore/nectar-eater, and pukekos, a blue-black bantam sized omnivore with enormous feet. Tuis (nectar-eaters) and fantails (insectivores) are moving into residential areas, too, as bush disappears they are becoming urbanised, and everyone likes them. Australasian magpies take over parks, aggressive sods, and plovers like open grassland like parks. Seabirds in plenty, not very different from the European ones.
We get plenty of mallard, though. If you feed them, they will come indoors begging! Just a little way. All-but-one domestic ducks are descended from mallard, and it isn't surprising. They just beg to be domesticated.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 03 Oct 11 - 10:17 AM

Thanks, CJB, your birding tips will be put to good use. I once shared a snow-buried BC mountain hut with a NZer who referred to the resident raven as a kea. They say the only birds as intelligent as ravens are members of the parrot clan.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 16 Nov 11 - 01:58 AM

Well, here we are in downtown Auckland. Been here a week so far, getting outfitted for five months of car-camping and tramping. We've bought a Mitsubishi Delica with about ten million km on the clock, a tent, some sleeping pads, some guide books, and some pots and pans. Now for a camp stove. Our question—how widely available is LNG? Most petrol stations or only few and far between? And what about ice for the cooler box? Back home lots of filling station and grocery store sells 2 kg blocks of ice in the summer time, or if not at least they sell bags of cubes. Same deal here in Gawdzone or what?

Heard a codger playing gospel songs and evangelising on Queens Street yesterday. Liked his style. Got my eye on an affordable guitar at Cadenza on K Road—I know there's better bargains out there but the hassle of tracking them down ain't worth it. Woulda coulda shoulda made it to the Bunker for the bluegrass club but was just too knackered.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Gurney
Date: 16 Nov 11 - 12:53 PM

I tried to reply last night, but Mudcat was down.
Do you want the gas for cooking, or for the van?
We once had a lot of petrol stations selling CNG (compressed natural gas) but it had low efficiency/power and they seem to have mostly gone. Usually, people use LPG (liquified petroleum gas) which is generally available for both vehicles and cooking.
These gasses are NOT interchangeable but I think it is not possible to mix them up as the filling arrangements are different. Check, though.
You can also swap-a-tank at many builders' merchants (Placemakers, Mitre 10, Bunnings and elsewhere.)
Ice is generally only available as cubes. Try the Bait Freezers at petrol stations. Sometimes it is sea-ice, so don't leave the drain open. Rust never sleeps.
The Delica is a good van, -I've got one myself,- and there are plenty of them about.
Check for reciprocality between RAC/AA in Blighty and the AA here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Gurney
Date: 16 Nov 11 - 01:08 PM

Oh, and you might consider the little camp-stoves that take individual tin-can disposable cartridges. The cartridges are very cheap. It all depends on how much cooking you (or she!) intends to do.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: vectis
Date: 16 Nov 11 - 02:54 PM

Most campsites have kitchens and BBQs so you only really need a campstove for drinks & lunch unless you intend to wild camp.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Little Robyn
Date: 16 Nov 11 - 07:41 PM

If you make it to Hawke's Bay/Hastings, look for the motor camp at the other side of Splash Planet - on Windsor Ave.
We are just opposite - in Louie Street. Especially if you're there on a Wednesday.
Robyn


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: bill\sables
Date: 17 Nov 11 - 01:50 AM

We are just about to leave the UK should be in Auckland on Saturday See you at Havlock North Little Robyn
Bill


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 17 Nov 11 - 03:21 AM

Thanks for the info, Gurney. Rest assured that I will be doing my fair share of the cooking, and will certainly be boiling most of the billies, if only because of my caffeine addiction. BTW, I for my sins am of the Canuckian rather than the UKelalian persuasian, although my part of Canadia IS called BRITISH Columbia (and very properly too, by jove!).

Vectis, I'm certainly looking forward to the luxury of kitchens and cookers, especially when it's raining, but we'll also be logging a lot of nights in primitive DOC sites where you fetch your water from the creek.

Robyn, I've pinned the Hastings Top Ten Motor Camp on Google Maps in case we wind up in Hastings, especially on a Wednesday.

Bill, where are you putting up in Auckland? We are in an apartment next to Myers Park, 10 minutes walk from the waterfront.

We spent the day on Rangitoto, saw the dreaded Fantail, Tui, Song Thrush, Blackbird, Goldfinch, Oystercatcher, and Red-Fronted Parakeet. Tomorrow will be all about the Delica, and off to Tiritiri Matangi on Saturday. The road trip starts on Wednesday.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Gurney
Date: 17 Nov 11 - 03:09 PM

Sorry for the mistake, Bob. It is just that calling NZ 'The Antipodes' is specific to Britain. And then not quite accurate.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Fossil
Date: 17 Nov 11 - 04:39 PM

And when you have done the North Island and are heading south to Wellington and the ferry, pass by Paekakariki and have a day or two here around Wellington. PM me and I'll give you the address and contact points.

Things to See, Lower North Island: 1) seal colony, Cape Palliser (the road out there is a blast, too) 2) Martinborough and the vineyards, 3)Kapiti Island (if you are a birder, this is a must-do) 4) the Otaki Gorge (a great campsite up there and super walking terrain).

Oh, and BTW, try and not be at campsites over the New Year, unless you really like 24-hour partying and lots of drunken hoons running around! NZ is OK generally, but it has its downsides.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: gnu
Date: 17 Nov 11 - 04:53 PM

I am looking forward to stories and pics.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 18 Nov 11 - 02:12 AM

"And then not quite accurate." According to Wikipedia's antipodes map the true antipodes of New Zealand is (or possibly are) Spain. The antipodes of BC lie (or lies) on the high seas between the Cape of Good Hope and Antarctica.

We should be passing through Wellington in late January, Fossil. We figured Christmas and New Years would make for rather nightmarish camping so we are booked into two cottages in Northland (a week in each, not her in one and me in another). Pauline is googling Kapiti this very minute.

If I can figure out how to make the iPad upload pictures to my New Music Canada page I'll let you know, Gnu. (Know Gnu is good, nu. There's a kosher deli next door and I've eaten so many bagels lately I'm starting to think in Yiddish.) As for a story, today for the first time in my life I drove on the "wrong" side of the road—and this in downtown traffic. The surprise ending is that I didn't wind up in jail or the hospital.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: mcpiper
Date: 18 Nov 11 - 02:26 AM

If you want a guitar I've got one to spare
(Where)
In my Eastern Bay of Plenty Home

If you are going to be near here (Whakatane), let me know.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Gurney
Date: 18 Nov 11 - 09:39 PM

Bob, you can visit BC's antipodes if you sign on a Toothfish longliner.
You are welcome to that! Pays well, but.
Shame that you'll miss the Auckland FF, though.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Little Robyn
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 02:55 AM

Once upon a time fetching your water from a creek would give you lovely clean H2O but not these days - too many freedom campers have used them for bathrooms and there are nasty diseases you can get if you don't boil the stuff first. You don't want a tummy bug while you're on the road.
And if you're caught leaving nasty rubbish in the bush you can get into trouble too.
Find a motor camp directory so you know where to find a safe camp with civilised facilities. There are lots of them.
Robyn


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 03:13 AM

Toothfish, otherwise Chilean sea bass, another long-lived slow-breeding cold deep water species which will no doubt soon be on the brink of extinction. If I were Jamie Oliver I'd start researching jellyfish recipes. Meanwhile, pass me another krill cake.

Thanks for the offer, mcpiper. I am now the proud owner of an all-black (how cool is that?) bargain-priced Cort flat-top box. What's up with the grounded freighter? It's totally dropped out of the news cycle.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 03:28 AM

We've got both volumes of the Rema Maps Motorhome & Camping Atlas, Robyn, lots of fuel for boiling, Katadyn tablets for back-up, and the Code Of The North stipulates that you leave the campsite cleaner than you found it. But as I said I am really looking forward to the campground kitchens because nothing makes it rain like the clock saying dinnertime. What we're really going to love though is New Zealand's No Bear policy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 03:33 AM

Go to a Hayley Westenra concert....say 'Hi' to her for me. she sang with some friends of mine...and was outstanding!

BTW, Everytime she sings the national anthem for New Zealand's soccer team..they win! True story!!

Regards!

GfS


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Fossil
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 03:36 AM

Corts are good! Generally well put together and good VFM. Wish you luck with it!

And the salvors claim to have got most of the oil off the Rena now and the beaches have been cleaned up. It is still on the reef and hasn't broken up yet. They have put a big crane and a barge next to it to start getting the containers off. Oh and there is a big exclusion zone around it in case the containers fall off and hurt someone. Still very slow going.

And the captain and first office are still languishing in jail waiting for their trial to commence on charges of a slew of maritime offences, with quite large penalties attached.

So far, so good, then!


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 08:29 AM

some weeks back I read an article about a Christchurch family who decided to migrate to Australia. All their goods & chattels were in a container on the Rena. I hope it gets safely off

sandra


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: GUEST,Fossil at work
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 11:32 PM

Well, I can only pity those poor souls, since the containers are all over the place, leaning at crazy angles and only held on by the little bits of metal that link them together (can't remember the name). I suppose they are insured, I'd be getting a bit worried by now.

To drift the thread a little, when we emigrated from Belgium to NZ, our container was supposed to be delivered to Tauranga, but for some unexplained shipping-company reason ended up in Napier, from where it had to be delivered to Wellington by train, arriving in the dispatch area without any papers of manifest, causing a fine old bureaucratic muddle, in the middle of which we were caught. Suffice it to say that if you ever get the chance to send anything by Maersk Shipping, avoid it like the plague!


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 20 Nov 11 - 03:29 AM

Drifting slightly from the antipodes issue, I noted today from the compass rose at the summit of Maungawhau that New Zealand is almost exactly at the halfway point on a line between BC and South Africa.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Gurney
Date: 20 Nov 11 - 03:51 PM

The Christchurch family that Sandra mentioned, their home was damaged in the earthquake. Then the Rena happened to them.

Some people have more excuse for paranoia than others have.

Fossil, when we emigrated here, our stuff got strike-bound in Australia.
The upside was that we had a fine time repaying all our LPs when we finally got them.

I did note a mint Jack And Danny Brothers dreadnaught on TradeMe for just a buy-now of just $100, just like mine, and I'd recommend anyone to try one, but Bob had other things in process.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: ChrisJBrady
Date: 20 Nov 11 - 05:27 PM

Hope you had a good time on Tiri!! Love the place - one of our favourite places in the world


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 21 Nov 11 - 01:29 AM

Hayley Westenra 'Scarborough Fair'

GfS


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 21 Nov 11 - 01:47 AM

Oh, good lordy..I just found this.....hayley and SophieWestenra(sisters)

Enjoy....and if you can, while you're over there..go see them!

GfS


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 21 Nov 11 - 04:13 AM

Tiri was magnificent. We had paid the extra five dollars for the guided tour expecting to be part of a group of, oh maybe dozens, but it was just us and the wonderful Helen. She offered us a choice of the hour and a half walk or the two hour walk. We chose the latter and managed to make it last more like three and a half hours. We barely had time to eat our sandwiches (packed in a rodent-proof container, of course) and have a visit with Greg (the Takahe) before the boat left.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: ChrisJBrady
Date: 21 Nov 11 - 07:14 AM

I am so glad you got to visit Tiri. Aha - Greg the takahe who lurks on the jetty looking for any visitor with an open bag on the ground to explore. Couldn't believe he's one of the rarest birds in the world. He's also the only swimming takahe in the world - apparently walks to the end of the jetty, jumps off into the sea, then swims back. And I guess his feathers aren't water proof. Here's some photos we took a few year's ago. at:

http://chrisbrady.itgo.com/takahe/takahe.htm


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Gurney
Date: 21 Nov 11 - 03:04 PM

Is Greg the one with the missing toe? Met that one when we were planting native bush there years ago. He stole food, calmly walking among the cub-scouts snatching beakfuls from the inattentive.. Impressive bird, getting on for as big as some domestic turkeys.
Tiritiri Matangi island was once cleared and farmed, but is being returned to its native-bush state. Perhaps in 400 years there will be mature Kauri trees there.


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: mcpiper
Date: 22 Nov 11 - 01:57 AM

Hey Bob, if you are going to be anywhere near the Eastern Bay of Plenty,i.e near Whakatane, tell me here and I will PM you some contact details.
Cheers
mcpiper


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Fossil
Date: 22 Nov 11 - 02:50 AM

Har! Gurney, I see you have a good eye for an axe! IF you are ever up here in Paradise/centre of the universe, Paekak, drop in and jam a while!


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Subject: RE: BS: Visiting New Zealand Nov-April - Advice?
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 25 Nov 11 - 01:08 AM

We've been camped in Tapu Valley on the Coramandel the last few days, unable to connect on account of a cell net shadow.   Cool pics, CJB, kinda like the ones Pauline took. I don't know if Greg had a missing toe, but one of them looked a bit buniony to me. Not that I fancy myself as a takehe podiatrist. I believe we'll be in your neighbourhood around Christmas time, mcpiper. I'll try to give you a shout if it all works out.


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