I just can’t help myself, probably should get myself checked. The itch however isn’t that unpleasant, actually somewhat enjoyable; the urges however are simply uncontrollable, why can’t I just sit still!! Sporadically a 48-hour window came up to cut loose, the sun was shining, the weather was sweet and the adventure capital of the world was to be my destination for the 4th time this year, can’t get enough, can’t enough, No!
Spring had just rolled in and mother nature pulled out all stops for our midday Friday arrival, encased in Epic NZ we walked onto the airport runway showcasing a sultry spring day ahead, not a breath of breeze nor a collection of clouds, party on! Arrival was critical, with a lot planned before darkness things had to run super smooth. We landed right on time, cruised off to Apex Car Rentals & moments later the living legends there had us merrily on our way in a stylie 2010 silver sovereign, well on track, Rippin it!
Destination Queenstown quickly became our online search sensation for all things to see and do, pre planning is not something us lads specialise in but was simply a must for this whirlwind trip. We called in to give the team a quick high5, then en route to Skyline to soak up the spectacle of the Southern Lakes District from way up high Gondola styles. A few hoons down the Luge track, racing not only top dogs Hans & Luci but also my iphone, which slipped out my pocket at the top of the steepest decent, classic!
G Force Paragliding and its main man ‘Dominique’ hooked this brother up offering the ultimate way to descend back down to town. A big run off the hill began the 12-minute descent down to the local rugby club below. We seemingly caressed the odd sporadic cloud and watched the revelation of the region from Godzone’s ultimate Lazy boy. I desperately wanted more of the G Force genius, but alas, the sun had begun to bathe in the comfort of the Southern Alps
Time to check into our private rooms at Nomad, surely NZ’s best Hostel & began to sink our first Jager. With Six 60 and Black Seeds tonite in full force, the options for cutting loose were endless!
Stand Up Paddle (SUP) Surfing is an ancient form of surfing, traced back to the very early days of Polynesia. It was 7am, sun slowly on the rise & the wind lay totally still, conditions were perfect, boardies on & we’re away!
The mirrored image of Lake Hayes was our water world destination complete with 6-degree lakewarm encasement, topped with a snow-capped mountainous backdrop as our auditorium. Having recently made the National ‘Starboard’ SUP race team, I’ve had this sport and its NZ pioneers show me an additional breath of good times all the time, this time a chapter in a Queenstown winter, Aloha! There truly is no better way to relax, get fit , and have the ultimate experience with the diverse climatic variety NZ dishes up, a sport with no limits allowing water time each and every day guaranteed, Ye Yah!!!
Boards stacked & tied down it was back in the Apex Rental and a beeline boost to Ziptrek Eco Tours, another stunning ride up the Skyline Gondola then a glide through the treetops on a series of four flying foxes. For those not so keen on a Gnarly Nevis Bungy, a Chaotic Canyon Swing as yet then the Ziptrek is the essential warm up to overcome those height horrors some people have.
Midday was near, 24 hours done & dusted. Foot down we blasted apart the Crown Range stoked to be on track for some sickness at Snowpark. The Billabong Bro Down presented by SONY was on including the Billabong Big Air contest . In its Eighth year the Bro Down attracted a swagger of international top dogs as well as a number of top kiwi boarders. Ticked off a few runs ourselves then parked up to watch the Big Air final and the SONY promo girls all in fine form.
Mahooooosive Front side 9’s & 10’s, Cab 9’s pulled through for bronze & silver but our very own Kiwi local lad Jake Kola came up trumps with a slick as Front side 1080 Melon.
Foot fat to the floor we hauled it back to Queenstown to squeeze in a 4th blood pumper before the sun was to sign out on a stupendous Saturday in the Southern Lakes. With 5 minutes remaining, we pulled up at the main town pier where the Kawarau jet was ready & waiting.
Warming up across Lake Wakatipu we smoke through the Kawarau River, front lit by the impeding Remarkable Mountain Range & its bluebird border. Popping stunning 360 spins at any given opportunity the Jet boat then speeds into the shallow, fast moving braids of the Shotover River. The 43 kilometre, hour-long Jet boating journey encompasses a complete collection of the local waterways. Topping out at 85km per hour in water often less than 10cm depth it was a Golden way to wrap up the days amped up antics.
Kicking back at Nomads, front row by the fire, we crack the Jager once more and limber up for an assault on the All Blacks 3rd Bledisloe Cup match in Sydney, lets get Rowdy!
The chopper was in tune, the Twin-engine turbines quickly wind up & we’re on the way, easy like Sunday morning!!!
Panoramic views of the Wakatipu Basin, Skippers road and Coronet Peak Ski engulfed our vision before flying up the Shotover River to witness our upcoming rapids & the world’s richest gold strikes. Our White water rafting drop in point came near & before long we were charging hard down the Shotover, with the occasional swim.
With a variety of grades varying 3-5 and an epic pitch black tunnel towards the end to navigate this trip rips and was a stunning way to wrap up a wondrous 48 hours.. Back into town we had a 10 minute window for one last antic, a freshen up frolic in Lake Wakatipu was the final cherry to the trip.
Soaking back some of the best NZ has to offer tastes oh so sweet! Gripping the local sensations our mighty homeland has is a pure delight. Now signing off this editorial I now switch to the preparation of the next, a Sri Lankan & Maldives Surf Trip like no other!!! Once again, we’ll find a batch of cold ones, crack the top, stand up & salute by saying ‘Here’s to us for making these opportunities happen’!
Destination Queenstown - http://www.queenstown-nz.co.nz/
Skyline Queenstown - http://www.skyline.co.nz/queenstown/
Paragliding, NZ G Force - http://www.nzgforce.com/
Stand up Paddleboard (SUP) - www.starboard.co.nz & www.supsnz.com
Ziptrek Eco Tours - http://www.ziptrek.com/queenstown-new-zealand/tours/tours
Kawarau Jet Boat - http://www.kjet.co.nz
Queenstown Rafting - http://www.queenstownrafting.co.nz/
Apex Car Rentals - www.apexrentals.co.nz
Tahuna Breaks - www.tahunabreaks.com
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