Well work has finished for the year so I'm off with the family to Bannockburn, no not that Bannockburn, Bannockburn Central Otago. A cunning plan to avoid the masses- go away for a week before the holidays start for most people.
"Central" is one of the most picturesque parts of the country. This area was where NZs gold rush started in the 1860s and and there are plenty of abandoned mining towns to explore in the region. We'll be camping at Bannockburn and taking the kids mountainbiking in the region so it should be a great week. Then we'll be heading to the bach for a couple of weeks of surf-kayaking, swimming, boogie boarding, chilling and avoiding the roads as much as possible!
One initiative that the government has underway is to create a series of bike tracks that run the length of the country- their solution to the Global Financial Crisis (I kid you not!). The Central Otago Rail Trail, which follows an abandoned railway line, has been a huge success and bought jobs and tourists to a really beautiful but underrated part of the country. I hope that the new Alps to Ocean Bike track, which will run from NZs highest mountain Aoraki (Cloud Piercer in Engish)/Mt Cook to Oamaru, will do the same to the towns and villages of the Waitaki Valley. The first couple of sections of the track have just been completed in time for the holidays and the entire 300km track is due to open next November. The geography and geology through the Waitaki Valley is truly stunning, so I'm looking forward to being able try this new track next year.
Anyway, this is supposed to be a wargaming blog, so my job while away will be to finish off the Russian Jagers so Kent and I can have a rematch sometime early in Janaary.
I hope everyone has a great, and safe, holiday break. I'll continue with the blog in the new year (once back in internet range).