Whites Bay to Murchison

It is bloody freezing this morning – we slept in Gwendolyn last night for the first time.  I actually slept really well, better than I thought I would and honestly do not mind the whole camping thing.  Yes I had reservations about it all prior to actually doing it but it wasn’t as bad as I thought.

As I said it was bloody cold when we got out of the van though and I was very eager to go somewhere and get a cup of tea and some hot food to warm up.  Yes you probably guessed it – we drove to Blenheim after packing the bed away and found a McDonald’s.

So, not the healthiest start to the day, but it was seriously appreciated, to have a hot hand wash and a proper toilet with no bugs that wanted to eat you. Also – free WiFi and heating!!
Click here to read about the campsite.

It was blue skies though so you cannot really complain and the views were lovely.  This was on the way down to Murchison.

Blue skies and mountains.

We also got to see quite a few of the trees colours turning, I do love Autumn.

Autumn Colours
Wairau River along the State Highway 63.


So we got to see a rainbow before the weather started to turn.
I say that, but there were points where the sun shined and then it rained – you may have heard the term ‘four seasons in one day’ when reading about New Zealand.  Well I think that mostly relates tot he South Island and this is where we are starting to get it.

Anyway, after a couple of hours of driving we decided to stop at Kawatiri for a chance to stretch our legs.  Here there was a Historic Railway Walk.
This railway used to connect Nelson to Invercargill and used to only run two trains a week, usually on Mondays and Wednesdays when it opened in 1929.

Part of the old track.
River Hope

We then headed over to Murchison Motorhome Park as that is where we had planned to stay the night.  It was to be our second night in Gwendolyn and I was really looking forward to it.  We had read that the site had access to a kitchen and hot showers so it seemed a little more promising than the last place.

It cost us $34 (approx. £17) for the both of us for one night.  Yes a little more than what we would like to have spent, however it was a lovely site and I personally thought the money was worth it for the site we had.  The owner was a lovely lady who had mentioned she had built the site herself (I’m assuming she paid for people to build it as she seemed a little old).

The site itself was really good, very clean and the kitchen had a fire which I immediately sat in front of to warm up.  The bathrooms were very clean and the showers were hot.  Maybe a little too hot, they only lasted seven minutes – Seven minutes in heaven – if you ask me.  If you wanted to wash your hair here, I would give it a miss as you really don’t have much time. You don’t want to end up having shampoo in your hair for the night.  When the showers stop, you cannot turn them on again for a while which seems a pain, but I guess she does have to pay the bill, not you.

We arrived around lunch time and after lunch we decided we were going to pay for internet and do a little job searching as we are getting a little worried about funding the rest of our trip. Plus it had started to rain so we didn’t really want to explore until it had calmed down a little.

Buller River through Murchison.

When the weather had calmed down a little we popped down to the river (Buller River) to do a little exploring.  I really liked the views of the mountains behind the river and the stones.

We walked along the stones and it wasn’t as slippery as I thought it might have been.  We also went paddling in the freezing water with our new wellies!

Paddling with our new wellies!
A bit of an artsy shot.

There is also a sandy side of the river where you can swim.  They advise you not to swim where the rocks are as there is a strong current which can take you down the river quicker than you think it would.
Below you can see it is a little calmer.

The sandy side of the river.

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