The morning was crisp and clear, no fog like the previous day. It was still getting light as we rolled out of the Motel and headed towards Christchurch. We made a quick stop for fuel and coffee, before getting on the road again.
It was a stunning morning and the epic shape of Mount Cook (Aoraki) loomed over Lake Pukaki. We were lucky enough to see it again, standing proud and clear with almost no cloud at all in the sky. We carried on towards Fairlie, a little wisp of fog here and there, spotting song thrushes, and other common things as we went. Nothing of note seen, until the shape of the Fairlie Bakehouse rose in front of us! We grabbed some lunch, and probably THE best pie in the World! ‘Salmon and Bacon’ pies from the Fairlie Bakehouse have to take the gold medal, wow, what a pie…. More pie crumbs on the floor of the van!
We carried on through some smaller towns, reaching SH1 again, a road we had become quite familiar with in many parts of the country. On the outskirts of Christchurch we ducked west, finding the hills of Cashmere and dropping James there. Then to the Christchurch Airport for David, Rick and Dotty, and then on to the Hotel for Pierre and Anne Marie & Connie and Larry.
Hard to believe our three weeks were over. We had covered much of the country in our time together, compiled a list of 155 species – two heard only (long-tailed cuckoo and great spotted kiwi), a lot of pies, a lot of glasses of sauvignon blanc, some great beers, and a lot of laughs along the way.
Bird of the day– ‘Salmon and Bacon’ pie…