Day 2 Hicks Bay to Gisborne New Zealand
6.44am The second morning I have awoken feeling I had a restless sleep and cold. The motel lacks a heater large enough to heat the room. The bed could do with another blanket. I did find it had an electric blanket which I turned onto get warm but for sleeping it was off.
An agreed 8am start today. So about 7.15 I will head across to the motel office so I can get on the internet. Wi fi here is not all good unless you are right by the modem. Sad for motel wi fi in this modern era to be like that. Cell phone reception is not working but given our remoteness that is not surprising.
First stop today is my request and since I am the driver and tour vehicle owner, my right to dictate. No not really, all happily agreed. We will head down to Hicks Bay so I can get some video footage and still photography. This trip I bought 3 cameras and my cell phone but so far only using my basic pocket size Sony plus my cell phone. Portable makes it a lot easier than carrying the larger Canon SLR.
After Hicks Bay we are going to a local Manuka Honey factory which just happens to have a café, so coffee and breakfast as well. That will be interesting as just last year I produced a 5 minute documentary for Haines Honey which was used on television in Shanghai.
Outside the motel I can hear the Tuis. A beautiful bird sound to hear early morning.
Now for a shower and try to warm up. I hope at the hotel in Gisborne I don’t feel as though the cold is biting into me this much.
12.50 Departed Hicks Bay Motel 8am exactly as planned. Temperature still very cold. Down to the beach for a photography stop. Absolutely beautiful. I have visited many times and always beautiful.
From Hicks Bay it was over to the East Cape Manuka Honey factory. Not only producing Manuka honey they mainly export to Japan, but the largest factory in New Zealand producing the Manuka oil extracted from the Manuka tree leaves. The factory owners spent 1.5 hours with us explaining what they do. And how they are teaching the community the value of protecting the Manuka tree for the future including replanting. A very interesting talk. And they put on a lovely kiwi style breakfast and for me a ‘hot long black coffee’. I was ever so grateful.
Time to take my snow gloves off as driving behind the glass became warmer. On to the historic Maori Tiki Tiki church. Absolutely beautiful inside as my photographs portray.
On to Tokomaru Bay. A beautiful beach although being battered with what I am guessing are southerly winds. But it didn’t stop my photo library being increased in size. Relying mainly on my compact Sony camera. Just easier to get in and out.
And now we have arrived Tolaga Bay and the historic and very famous wharf. If I had time plus my fishing rod with me I would be tempted to stand at the end and cast out. But no time and no rod with me. Next time maybe. My group walked it, I have done it a number of times before so stayed with the van as security for the luggage inside and chance for me to catch up on writing this blog.
Next stop is at a reef where we put on waders and walk out through the water to feed the stingray. At time of writing I am not sure how the weather will factor in this. It is fine but strong winds with a cold bite to them.
3.19pm As I suspected may be the case the walk over the reef was cancelled due to this terrible southerly coming through. Stopped as was briefed by the owner of the Stingray viewing operation. But no opportunity to put the waders on and walk out on the reef.
Now Gisborne in our hotel. Next visit is to a local brewery. That put a smile on my face. Walking distance so no driving so the odd beer not an issue.
The dinner restaurant has been booked. Its quite good being the only male on this trip plus driver, I get well looked after.
A tour route is starting to come together for future tours offered by Peter and Xiaoli Tours. More to see yet. Most I know just a little rusty on. For me main reason is to gather photography. Because of weather looking rough on the sea where as on a good day is looks brilliant and calm. But that’s ok. Photographs are stacking up plus some interesting video. Once home base in another 5 days a lot of video editing to do. Photographs I never touch other than crop so they are fine.
Now time to finish todays story by sorting todays photographs to paste with this story.
A great trip. I can see a fishing and maybe diving tour being put together after this trip.