Browsed by
Author: Katamarino

Round the World – New Zealand Days 24 and 25

Round the World – New Zealand Days 24 and 25

It was a pleasure to wake up and not need to be heading to the airport for another flight. The flying is always enjoyable, but a day off every now and then always helps to manage the fatigue and keep the pace sensible. We had a relaxed breakfast with the Drakes, before relocating the aircraft around the side of the house to the tie-downs; the wind direction had shifted, and Bruce had warned us that wind strength could increase without…

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Round the World – New Zealand Day 23

Round the World – New Zealand Day 23

It was going to be a very long day of flying; we’d decided to condense two days into one, so that we could later spend 2 nights in Christchurch rather than moving on every day. After an excellent breakfast prepared by Noel, we caught a taxi to the airport and headed out from Invercargill. Our first course was south, towards Stewart Island and the most southerly stop of the entire round-the-world trip. Having come this far south, I couldn’t resist…

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Round the World – New Zealand Days 21 and 22

Round the World – New Zealand Days 21 and 22

We had to be in Manapouri for 9am, so it was a fairly early start in Queenstown to catch a taxi to the airport. Elsa very helpfully went down to breakfast and collected food for me, so I could sleep a little longer! We had to wait a while to get someone to open the security gate, but once we did it didn’t take us long to load up the aircraft, pre-flight, and get on our way. There was a…

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Round the World – New Zealand Days 19 and 20

Round the World – New Zealand Days 19 and 20

We woke up in Hokitika to greatly improved weather. The ground team dropped Elsa and I in the town center to have breakfast and kill some time while they drove down towards Franz Josef Glacier. We lingered over bacon sandwiches and an absurdly large slice of chocolate cake, and were about to start a leisurely walk to the airport when the rain began. We waited for a while, but things didn’t improve, and the temperature had dropped ten degrees as…

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Round the World – New Zealand Days 17 and 18

Round the World – New Zealand Days 17 and 18

My dad and my aunt left Takaka a couple of hours before us. We’d be meeting up again that evening, and their journey was going to take them significantly longer than ours would. Elsa and I took a walk up and down the main street, grazing on a selection of croissants and Thai beef curry for breakfast. Takaka is clearly a very trendy town, as evidenced by the number of people wandering around with no shoes and dreadlocks. The highlight…

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Round the World – New Zealand Days 15 and 16

Round the World – New Zealand Days 15 and 16

We wanted to visit some attractions in Rotorua, so we left the Puka Park lodge fairly early and drove north to Whitianga airport. The DC3 had clearly had its engine repaired, as it was no longer on the field. I left my landing fee in the honesty box, and we headed out south along the coast. Yet again, the weather had cooperated and it was a beautiful, sunny day in the Coromandel! Our destination today was Rotorua, and the flight…

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Round the World – New Zealand Days 12 to 14

Round the World – New Zealand Days 12 to 14

In the morning I decided we should go back to the Aratiatia rapids, and watch from a different vantage point, given that it had been so impressive the first time around. We arrived just before the release, and Elsa told me to go on ahead to get a good spot at the vantage point. My legs are longer, after all. Unfortunately, she missed the turning to the viewing point I was at, so we watched the release separately and met…

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Round the World – New Zealand Days 9 to 11

Round the World – New Zealand Days 9 to 11

My father would be in New Zealand for all the time that we were; and my aunt would be flying in from Australia to join us for most of the time too. We had worked out a combined road trip / flying trip schedule, where we’d follow a similar routing and meet up every couple of nights. Our first destination after Auckland would be the small town of Te Kuiti, close to the famous Waitomo glow worm caves. After a…

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Round the World – New Zealand Days 7 and 8

Round the World – New Zealand Days 7 and 8

A distinct lack of clarity on the New Zealand customs website meant that, while I had thought I could fly in to Kerikeri airport as an approved customs airport. However, it turned out that while it was approved as an airport of arrival by the MPI (bio-security), it was not by customs. Instead of flying into Kerikeri, then, I decided to head directly to Auckland International, and had contacted the Air Center One handling agents to organise my arrival. The…

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Round the World – New Zealand Day 6

Round the World – New Zealand Day 6

I had a great night’s sleep, and had also been given the use of the wifi for flight planning which was incredibly helpful. I was running half a day ahead of schedule now, so when Peter and Sharon offered to drive me around Lord Howe Island so I could see some of the sights, I jumped at the opportunity. I’d only been expecting to make a short fuel stop here originally, so getting to see the island was a real…

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