Saturday, May 17, 2014

Haast to Queenstown - the Final Leg of the DRIVE!

 The ride from Haast to Queenstown was one of the most beautiful of the drives.  There were beautiful calm lakes and snow capped mountains.  As dear husband was still taking all roads at 100kmh (60 mph), I managed to get all the pictures here through the car windows!!  You can see my reflection in at least one of them!  
 The scenery was just stunning! (despite my reflection )
What made it even nicer was that it was literally the peak of the autumn foliage -- an unexpected bonus.  There are not that many deciduous trees in NZ according to our guide on one trip but the ones there were red, orange and bright yellow!

Along the way, we actually had to stop for 3/4 of an hour so they could do road repair!  The road was closed at nights even.  Seems the rocks were falling down from the cliffs on the sides.  There had been a huge storm a couple of weeks before we got there and we could see trees down all the way down the coast.  They had done a good job of cleaning things up though

The hotel where we stayed in Haast was not one of the best but there were not a lot of options but there was a large field behind it and I spotted these rather odd looking birds.  They are Masked Lapwings and do have a very funny looking face!  They only seemed to be there first thing in the morning or at dusk and at quite a distance.

Way off in the distance there was a field of ducks and included many of the Paradise Shelducks that I had seen before.  Coincidentally it was the first day of duck hunting season and there were some Mallards in there as well.

 Just some more shots of the scenery along the road!

One of the lakes along the road and you can see the twisty road!!
This was the view from the hotel where we stayed in Queenstown (the Mercure).  It was a lovely hotel and the view was amazing.  Unfortunately, when we awoke the next morning the view was gone and the rain had descended!!

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