Thursday, June 29, 2006

Snow photos from fishing trip

Telegraph Road

Castle Hill station

Castle Hill station

Snow covered bush on side of road at Flock Hill station

Frost on matagouri bush at Lake Pearson - even the sun wasn't melting it!

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Ice fishing?

Last Sunday was a beautiful day so we decided to go up to the mountains. I. had cabin fever, particularly since a friend of his mentioned winter fishing so he decided that we needed to head to Lake Pearson to see what was happening.

The mountains looked absolutely spectacular driving up - crisp white against a clear blue sky. Perfect conditions for all the skiers and just in time for the school holidays so all the ski fields will do really well this season for a change.

The following photos were all taken out of the moving car.

The above photo is taken at the top of Porters Pass and shows some of the multitudes of cars lining the road so people could go toboganning. Some people had their barbecues out as well and everyone looked very happy. I don't have any waterproof trousers at the moment so didn't want to get out there and join them.

This is Castle Hill, where all the rock climbers go. Once again, the sides of the road were covered in cars with happy families exploring the winter wonderland but I don't think there was much rock climbing going on.

This is Lake Pearson. I don't know if you can see the white area in the middle of the lake but its not a cloud reflection - its ice. Even in the sun it was bitterly cold and I. didn't see hide nor hair of any fish but still had a good time. All the willow trees around the lake had feathery icicles on them - very pretty but it shows how cold it was because even in the sun, the icicles didn't melt.

When I. finished stalking trout, we cooked up some bacon for bacon butties but almost froze our butts off when the sun disappeared behind the mountains. The temperature plummeted and we thought that we weren't going to be able to finish cooking the bacon it got so cold. We persevered and the instant it was cooked, we ate and left. Arriving home to the log fire still going was fabulous.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Frosty mornings

This shot is to make my little blister homesick! Driving to work earlier this week (Tuesday) there was this absolutely fabulous Port Hills skyline because it was a frosty morning (see the white grass on the side of the road?) By this time all the snow that had been lying around had long gone, except for in the shady corners of our garden.

This was the same morning once I'd got to work looking out over the valley and north to the Alps. Frost in this area is quite unusual - even the stones in the carpark were frozen solid. We did get a fabulous day though.

Writing this today and I wish we had this wicked frost again because then at least it would be a fine day. At lunchtime yesterday it was only 3 degrees and driving rain with snow it. Today its mostly dry but a strong, cold southerly. I need to go out at some point fairly soon to buy lunch stuff and I'm putting it off!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

The emperor's new clothes

I had to show you a photo of Barney wearing his new coat - he's very proud of himself in it and toasty warm. He's standing by one of his most favourite toys - a scrunched up sheet of paper. He gets so enthusiastic about chasing it when you throw it that he often kicks it forward with his feet as he bounces up to it. Very cute.

Yesterday was absolutely freezing. I had frozen fingers virtually the whole day and just didn't work well. This morning didn't start off so brilliantly either - the hot water stopped running in the shower before I'd finished so I ended up having a very brisk (and short) cold shower. The pipe out of the tank had frozen. Even the carpark at work was frozen and I don't remember it freezing at all last year - very unusual for the valley as its normally regarded as being pretty much frost free. But the upside of all this is that it is the most fabulous day with clear blue and sunny skies. Hooray.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Let there be SNOW!!

I got a request from my little blister for a homesick making shot of the Canterbury Plains with snow capped mountains in the distance so I complied (top shot). I even included the ubiquitous sheep. Taken from the moving car so you could just about call it an action shot!

Then on Monday morning we woke up to quiet - not even any cars and the radio saying that the local high school was closed for the day, which was pretty strange. So I peered out the window and it was snowing! Big, fat flakes falling out of the sky. Very unusual for us to get snow so it was pretty exciting. So I thought I'd better get another shot of the mountains taken in pretty much the same place, also in a moving car but taken much earlier in the day (i.e. dawn) so I've had to torture the photo some what to make it visible.

Photo of the nectarine tree looking impressive. It's still snowing at this point - you can see the flakes against the red of our shed. But check out the impressive build up of snow on the power lines to the garage. We were sure we'd lose power but although it flickered a lot all day, it only went out for a total of 2 minutes. We were a lot more fortunate that people inland and further south - some of them are still without power (its now Thursday) and for some of them, it could be another week yet.

This is taken out our living room window just after we'd decided not to drive to work as it was still snowing and we weren't sure we'd be able to get home (we have a long commute). Turns out we probably could have made it to work in the afternoon but a 2 hour round trip for only 2 hours at work is not all that appealing. Staying at home keeping the log fire going and stroking the cat whilst reading your book was a much more attractive proposition.

We still have a lot of snow lying around at home. We didn't get home from work until 10.30pm last night and the house was freezing. There's still snow on the roof and although the lawn has thawed a bit, there's still a lot of snow lying around. With the full moon the last couple of nights, it looked spectacular (and frosty). All the skiers & snowboarders are very excited.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006


I have a headache and the cat is back at the vet for her eyes. Even though its a beautiful day it hasn't got off to the best start. I WILL win this war against catching this cold!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Long weekend

Well, we've just had the last long weekend until spring and it certainly was a mixed bag weatherwise. Sat was marginal, Sun was appalling and Mon was fantastic. I. has had a horrendous cold so spent the whole weekend nursing it so that he was able to make it to work today. Unfortunately I think I've caught it, even though we take all reasonable precautions to prevent passing it to each other. So runny eyes and sore throat don't bode well for me but I remain positive - this is as far as its going to go!

Sunday I left I. tucked up on the sofa and went up to Terrace Downs for lunch with friends. The weather was pretty horrendous but the Rakaia River looked spectacular with a mass of brown and swirly water pouring through the gorge. There were a lot of disappointed golfers hanging around at the club rooms, including some very wet ones that had obviously not listened to the weather forecast. I had a great time and didn't head home until about 5pm - I could have stayed longer but felt that I. might have been feeling very bored by then with only a sick cat for company.

We had to take Zebo to the vet on Fri as her eye was disgusting - turns out she had a wound that was ulcerating AND conjungtivitis. Charming. So eye drops 3x a day. She was very good about it all, especially as we always fed her as soon as we'd put the drops in.

Monday I went in to have an art morning with J. and her daughter A. which was so much fun. I'd been meaning to have a go at painting some small canvases but it was a lot more fun doing it in a group. Only managed to get 3 done but each one was better than the last and I thoroughly enjoyed myself. We trashed their dining table but managed to avoid getting any paint on the furniture and minimal amounts on ourselves. I want to have another go but I'll have to have a bit more of a think about what I want to produce this time.

Even though Monday was a beautiful day it was sooo cold - there was snow on Banks Peninsula. Mount Dobson opened this weekend which was a real coup for them as they managed to beat Mount Hutt by a whole week. Hopefully this ski season will be much better than the previous couple but I really have to try and go soon, just in case.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Early winter morning

Taken before breakfast yesterday. I have very roughly put two photos together - you can probably see the join but I don't want to spend much time on it. It was a beautiful cloudless morning with this most amazing sky and it turned into a lovely sunny day. Unlike today which is gloomy, drizzly and cold - most unpleasant for the start of Queens Birthday Weekend.