A Taste of Alpine Life (Part Three) – Potts Range / Erewhon Park (Almost)

“On a Mish” #381 A Taste of Alpine Life (Part Three). Potts Range / Erewhon Park (Almost). Hakatere Conservation Park. 1.8.2023. When it is all said and done I have had a love / hate relationship with my time in Christchurch. On one hand it is a place that has saved me from possible doom, as Te Anau only has a very basic medical centre and I have had a far from basic injury. But on the other is the fact that Christchurch is miles away from the mountains and, apart from the Port Hills, the place is very flat. Being surrounded by flatness has left me with a craving for elevation and a taste of alpine life…

A relocation call had led to a couple more metres of walking than I really wanted… Especially because I had to walk back up a hill! After grabbing my pack I paused to gauge the gusts, and with one making me wobble around I knew heading to my new spot was the better idea.

The new spot was on what must have been part of the original track up to the ski area. Now completely overgrown, the track isn’t much help for getting people up the hill, but it does have flat spots perfect for my tent.

I was now positive that this was where Ernie and I would spend the night. The only thing preventing us from stopping for the day was the fact that I had to get my second pack. The two pack process is the only way I can hike without putting too much weight on my hip and back, however it is times like this when I wish I could just carry one big pack! At least the hike back down had epic views of the Rangitata Valley and the Two Thumb Range.

With Ernie doing most of the work via the lead I struggled my way back up to my camping spot, and once there I needed a break before I could start setting up my tent. The pause in paradise let me gather my thoughts and take my focus off my hip and back pain and onto the grandeur that surrounded me. I had got to the dinner table, pulled my seat in and was now ready to dine on the feast that is alpine life.

From my little nook on the side of the mountains I could see bits of tussock being whipped up by the wind and sailing through the air. I could also see the trees above me swaying back and forth with each powerful gust. I knew the fabric would be fluttering during the night but this sure beat being stuck back in Christchurch.

My night was mostly spent sitting watching the world below me, which was a wonderful change from dreaming about this very situation. Pure mountain bliss even if it was a little bit windy. The sunset was glorious and I was savouring my feast of elevation food!

Ernie, on the other hand, probably wished he was away from the wind and back in front of the heater at home! I got him out of the chilly outside world and into the tent. Once inside he was nice and cosy wrapped in a blanket on his bed. Hindsight is a funny thing as he spent this time recharging his batteries and, just before I turned in for the night, he decided to take himself for a walk… in the dark…

Looking South at Mesopotamia Station

New Zealand. What a place to explore!

Subscribe To my newsletter