Breakfast first – always a good start to a busy day. Three of us decided we would have breakfast at the Flat Hills Café, a good deal with complimentary tea or coffee for those staying in camp. We all chose bacon and eggs – but wanted our eggs done differently. One had fried, one ordered poached, and the other wanted scrambled eggs.
All in need of bacon and eggs to start the day
We were joined at the table by Ricky and Jane, travelers from California who were touring around the country. They are ardent Lord of the Rings fans, and are looking forward to their upcoming Weta Workshop tour. I asked Ricky if he wouldn’t mind taking our photo, and then he casually mentioned that he was a professional photographer working for National Geographic. Do check out examples of his glorious work on his website at www.rickyqi.com. No doubt he is used to a much more fancy camera than mine. They were most appreciative when we gave them both some ideas for the South Island portion of their trip.
Breakfast over, we finished packing up the vans and headed on to Ohakune, heading up SHI to Waiouru, and then turning onto SH49 to Ohakune. Not a long trip at all, only 83km today.
First glimpse of Mt Ruapehu today, coming into Waiouru
Arriving at the Ohakune Club, we found a site each along the tree line, trying to get away from the wind gusts, and went inside to pay our overnight fees. We had been here a few months previously, and the Manager remembered us, she said.
Two Leisurelines at the Ohakune Club
No trip to Ohakune is complete without a visit to the “world famous in New Zealand” Chocolate Éclair Shop.
It’s no surprise that we came out with some of those delicious chocolate éclairs for lunch. But to even things up a bit, we also bought some nice locally grown vegetables too.
Look at the size of these!
The owners of the shop are obviously rugby fans and they had this little display in the shop, especially for the Lions supporters. The 2nd Test will be played tonight, so we wonder which side will be in need of the tissues? Robin will be in his element later tonight when he watches the match inside the club on the big screen, surrounded by lots of other keen rugby supporters.
Tissues to mop the tears
In the afternoon we took a little “tiki tour” around town – although we have been to Ohakune there are still places to see. The local museum was sadly closed so we checked out the historic railway station. No wonder this is a chilly place in winter, it is over 2000 feet high. That probably explains why we saw so much fire wood for sale.
Ohakune Railway Station
Pallets full of firewood for sale
Ohakune is famous for growing carrots, parsnips, swedes, potatoes and Brussel sprouts. The huge fibreglass carrot to celebrate the town was officially opened in 1984.
The Big Carrot of Ohakune
View from our camp today