Tuesday, May 28, 2013

My week

 I'm having a wonderful time in Queenstown!
I joined a gym. It's such a luxury to have a membership, plus I feel like less of a nomad for belonging to a club. Haha.
I love my place but I'm in the process of finding a new one. Unfortunately, my short term residence is nearing its end. So I'm trying to not take anything for granted, like the view and my big fluffy bed, because I've been so lucky to have them these past weeks.
In the meantime, I've enjoyed some nights out on the town.
Ah cowboys!

Jo aka Little Spoon, cowgirling it up

Jamie- the bandit of Cowboys

So predictable.
Inside cowboys...note the revolver taps and antler chandelier hahaha

Post cowboys

I've played a game or two of disc golf.

Duck pond between holes 18 and 1 

The lake from the gardens/disc golf course 

Prepare yourself for the following epic action pics.
Ready, set, action!
We can try again...

There's no laughing in disc golf!

Showing some heart, finally

That's how you action frisbee. Stone cold face. Eyes on the prize.

And I completely LOVE my job. My coworkers are awesome and I really dig talking to the customers and selling them fun gear.
Last week we had a week function at a steak house and hit the town up after. This week we've had a few technical sessions.
Love this sign at my job

Basically, brand representatives come in to talk about their product. Sometimes this involves movies, beer, pizza and free shwag! Can I really be getting paid for this?
The AR-15's in our gun department 

The super sweet German girls that I did the Routeburn track with left for Australia.
Minus 5  ice bar

Fiona. My fantastic roommate! 

Kate aka Killer. My other temp roommate.

So the Bumbles girls had a going away party for them, and we all went to the ice bar called Minus 5.
Sophie and Annalisa on their last night 

Eric and Dom- the unofficial Bumbles mascots

It turned into a big, long and fun night.
Bumbles girls

Me and Jess

Ice sculpture at the bar
Jess, ex-roomie, total crack-up, and my Fergburger hook up

Winter is here and QT is beautiful. I can't wait to go boarding.
The approaching winter from my back deck

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Routeburn track, great walk. Glenorchy to Harris Saddle.

I took advantage of my two days off and the nice weather to do the Routeburn track. It's one of the great nine walks of NZ.
The track connects Aspiring Park with Fiordland Park and its a one way hike that can be turned into a loop, if you have enough time.
I  only had 2 days so I hiked the trail from the Glenorchy side, up past the highest point at Harris saddle (then a bit further) and back down to the first hut on the trail.
The start of the trail

I mentioned my plans to Sophie and Annalisa, two incredibly nice girls I met at Bumbles. They really wanted to do the trek too so I picked them up at 6am and we headed to the trailhead.
The track begins in gorgeous Glenorchy an hour and a half drive from Queenstown.
We were all pretty beat that morning from lack of sleep.
Tree beards brother?

Forest shrooms

The first 2 hours of the walk were through beechwood forest and along the river until we finally arrived at Routeburn Flats hut.

 This is the hut we were planning to stay overnight. So we dropped off the bulk of our gear and did the rest of the hike with day packs.
There were heaps of bridges

After an hour and a half of walking uphill.

We arrived at Routeburn Falls hut. It was amazing!
I really wished we could've stayed there but unfortunately it was closed for maintenance. There is a beautiful waterfall right next to the hut and the view looking down onto the valley below was sick.
Routeburn Falls

After the falls we walked through a meadow.

The meadow
Climbing up from the meadow

There were distant waterfalls and snow on the mountains on either side. Then once again we were ascending.

After another hour we had reached Lake Harris.
Lake Harris

 Since the clouds were still hanging around on the trail above us, we stopped and had lunch and took in the breathtaking views from Lake Harris and its waterfall.
Lake Harris

The top of lake Harris falls

Time was running out. We only had one headlamp (I was a dummy and forgot mine) so I didn't want us to have to walk in the dark for too long. There were some really sketchy places that would've been a nightmare without a light. But we really wanted to see the top and I dropped off my pack behind a bush and we made a push for the saddle. Just as we were hiking up the clouds cleared and we could really see the mountains for the first time.
Almost to Harris Saddle

We got to the saddle and the views were just crazy!
So unbelievably beautiful!
Mountain top pond

We walked another half hour down the trail before we reluctantly turned around for the day.
Looking onto the Hollyford Range near our turnaround point 

When we were halfway back to the hut I remembered my backpack.
Way, way, way back up the trail.
I swear, I can't take me anywhere.
So I added another 30 minutes to my hike when I ran back up the mountain to retrieve it.
Lake Harris

Lake Harris on our way back

This also cost us an extra half hour of daylight. But luckily we got past the really crazy parts of the trail just as it got dark. We actually made pretty good time on our way back considering three people were walking in the dark with one light.
We stayed in the hut and played some card games with a few fellow travelers.
View from Routeburn Flats hut

The girls slept in the next day. Once we were up and fully caffeinated, we did the 2 hour hike back through the forest to the trailhead.
Creek waterfalsls

Creek falls

I realized I hadn't taken much of the views in on our way up, I think I was sleep hiking, so I really enjoyed walking it again.

But I was happy to get to the car....
I was already dreaming of the giant Fergburger that I was going to eat as soon as we could get back to Queenstown.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Weekend update with hobomite

I've almost forgotten what they feel like...
With my new super dope job I get 2 consecutive days off a week. I really don't care which days they are, it's a weekend. And it's awesome.
The past few days the weathers been warm and the days beautiful.
The recent snow is almost gone from the mountains.
I've had a few nights out on the town (fun but expensive). I always seem to end up at Cowboys...
Sophie and the stuffed bear at cowboys

There are so many pubs here, I really should expand my drinking horizons.
The little alley that leads to my favorite watering holes.

I love my new place. My flatmate is so cool.
This is hanging in the bathroom of my new place. So cool.

 And with such a spectacular view from my lounge it's also nice to just relax at home and take it all in.
Sunset on the lake

 I especially love my early mornings. There's nothing like starting your day off with a pot of coffee and a mountain sunrise.
Sun rising and clouds snowing on the Remarkables

Sunrise from my kitchen

Now that I've moved out I still hang out with my backpacker buds from the hostel. I've met so many nice people here in Queenstown.
Stay classy, Queenstown.

One of the locals that I befriended took me fishing yesterday.
I was so stoked! Oh man, I miss fishing.
I never, ever thought I could miss an object. Sad but true.
I miss my fishing pole. Not as much as my truck, tho.
The Armadillo has a special place in my heart.
I find myself gazing at this photo often. 

Speaking of  vehicles, I finally put my door panel back on the P.O.S. I drive in NZ. It's been off for a month while I tried to figure out how to fix the window without buying new parts.
Stoopid car. A least it doesn't look like this anymore.

My solution? Don't roll down the window.
Problem solved. Ungh.
Fishing was great. I even landed a decent sized Rainbow. I gut hooked him so there was no way to catch and release.
Poor fishy. Nobody wants to die at the hands of a goofy midget. It's just undignified. 

Too bad.... At least he was delicious.
So purty
Homemade fish and chips

I had a great day out on the river. It was so awesome to have a line in again.
My friend, Mike, caught an eel. Shudder.

I believe a new fishing pole is in the cards....
Sun setting on the mountains after a day of fishing