WARNING: Photo Heavy, proceed with drink of choice and comfy chair.
Last weekend, well Saturday to be precise, TOF and I decided to go for a drive down to National Park to see the SNOW!!! I have not been to the snow since I was a small child so I was quite excited about it. For those that do not know where National Park is here is a wee map.
New Zealand is made up of Islands and the main two are the North and the South. We live in the North one.
We drove from Hamilton to the Chateau Tongiriro, on to Taupo and then home.
We left home at about 8am and returned roughly around 5pm so a day trip!
I have circled the two coastal places I talk about and visit just so you know where they are.
Hamilton is very centrally positioned so day trips are an easy do.
Like Raglan on the West Coast is under an hour and Whangamata on the East Coast is about an hour and a half.
Back to the SHOW TRIP!!!
It takes about 3 hours to get to National Park so can you imagine my excitement when just out of Taumaranui with about a half hour to go we came across SNOW!!!! By then the traffic had started to build as I guess loads of other people had the same day trip planned.
Last time I frolicked in the cold white stuff I was just a kid, wearing my red gumboots (Wellies) and totally rugged up for the experience, due to being dressed by my mother.
This time I wore a FROCK!! Safe to say I was the only person wearing a frock, but I hadn't gone to ski, I had gone for a look. I did have boots on which sunk near to my knees in snow, SO AWESOME! Oh that is Mt Ngauruhoe (Pronounced Nar-roo-a-ho-e) behind me. It was a beautiful clear mild day so no gloves and hats were required by me.
Someone had the best time constantly lodging snowballs at me, head shots too!! I got him back plenty, just a couple of big kids!!
Remember, he is smiling on the inside!! See the snow in my hair and the melted stuff on my face? It was so good.
Mt Tongariro (Pronounced Tong-a-ree-row) and Mt Ngauruhoe with all that lovely jubbly snow on the ground. There was so many people, lots had just stopped on the side of the road and were out playing.
We saw plenty of expensive cars like the black Maserati but little Red did a sterling job and was so easy to find a park in between all the large off road vehicles.
We wandered up the road to The Chateau Tongariro, built back in 1929, for $78,000, a grand old building.
'In 1887 the Paramount Chief of Ngati Tuwharetoa Horonuku Te Heu Hey Tukino gifted the tribes land including the sacred mountain peaks of Ruapehu, Ngauruhoe and Tongariro to the people of New Zealand. The gifting was to ensure this precious land's protection for all time, for all people'.
We headed in doors to check out this grand old lady of the mountain
and have a coffee.
Large old wing back chairs and the warmth of the fires welcomed us.
The views out the windows were spectacular, and many people over the years would have drawn in this sight like we did.
I found these photos of bygone days online to show how little has changed.
Mt Ruapehu (pronounced Roo-a-pay-who) is behind the Chateau, and all three mountains are active volcanoes.
These sourced photos show Ngauruhoe blowing her top in 1934 and 1928.
And Ruapehu doing the same in 1945 and 1996. Thankfully this doesn't happen too regularly and with constant monitoring safety is the priority.
Driving towards Taupo you could see Tongariro let of some steam
all very normal.
We stopped to check out some glorious views on our drive and this one showed where we were heading. Lake Taupo.
The view across the Lake to the snow covered Mountains was beautiful.
We sat Lakeside with our thermos and shop bought hot pies to the melodic tunes of a Tui above us in a large tree. Taupo was humming with tourists and holiday makers. We forgot that the school holidays were on, hence the abundance of people and lack of car parks!
From here we made our way home.
The excitement of our return was short lived as the evening drew and everyone got comfortable and went to sleep!
On Sunday I decided to go check out a Poultry and Pigeon Show that was being held at the Hamilton Gardens in one of the Pavilions.
My dearly departed Cassie would have loved this bunch of look-a-likes, I will admit to feeling a little sad as seeing these ones.
Mother Nature is truly a marvel when you see such beautiful colours and designs in feathers.
Who knew Ducks wore hair pieces?
I called those two Trump Ducks!!!
So many different species of ducks were on display.
I do like Frizzles.
So many gorgeous large Roosters and small,
the noise was deafening at times but appropriate!
I think these were Heritage breeds, all skinny legs and not much meat, but show birds for sure.
Even Cruella Deville was there dressed as a fancy Pigeon!!
I love the puffed out pose of the Pigeon in the middle.
Who knew Pigeons liked Perms??
These Pigeon's had the best tail feathers.
Now as promised a sample of goodies found of late at the Op Shops, of course there are other pieces of clothing but best shown when being worn I think.
The funniest find has to be that Fanny Paddle!!! In our part of the world Fanny is not your back bottom.
In other news I found where those sneaky bitches I refer to as my girls have been laying some eggs! Needless to say the dogs have been getting them for breakfast as I do not know how long the eggs have been hiding.
With a lack of flowers around I placed colourful foliage in my Lulubelle basket. A small cat has decided they look better on the floor, so we battle daily to keep them on the table do Toebe and I. No one is winning!!!
Speaking of him, he has found a new place to hide in, the laundry basket that he leaps out of when Sheba walks past, such a good game he thinks! If you are on Facebook you can follow Toebee on 'Toebee and the rest of the gang'.
With such changeable weather the layering game is in full implementation at the moment. Dresses and pants are a fav.
It would appear that I do indeed have colour in my garden, some Spring Bulbs have sprung, fingers crossed we don't get a frost to kill them off.
I found this on a wall down an alley the other day.
And this pretty much is how I have been,
Winter sometimes takes my Mojo away.
***See you later***