Mavora Madness – Part One

“On a Mish” #255 Mavora Madness – Part One. Mavora Lakes. 13.3.2021. The Mavora Lakes Campsite has to be one of the country’s best pull up, park and camp areas in the country. The massive camping area covers forest, lakes and mountains, all of which are very pleasing to the eyes. Before our borders were closed the area was a hot spot for international visitors, and during the summer months the place would be packed on days and nights with clear skies. The place was abuzz with happy campers and equally as happy Te Namu, all enjoying a meal and the view. The campsite is well set up with toilets and water taps dotted throughout, and some of the spots even have old iron fireplaces which really reminds me of some of the camping grounds I have been to in Australia...

Working in tourism can sometimes isolate you from your friends who work “normal” hours. To me a weekend has nothing to do with what day it is, and this can even go for public holidays as the tour train keeps on chugging (apart from that time in 2020… I think it was something to do with the weather or something…). Every now and then my weekend would align with Saturday and Sunday, and usually this would mean some form of hi-jinx with the bros. With a weather forecast too perfect to miss, a couple of calls were made between Te Anau and Queenstown, and a plan was made to meet up at the Mavora Lakes. A complaint would receive a slap after turning off onto the Mavora and being greeted with nothing but blue skies and epic mountain country. I was surprised (and pleased) with how busy the campsite was. Heaps of people enjoying the sunshine on bikes, boats and in boots. There were also a few herds of horses + people, quietly making their way around the other campers. With my drive from Te Anau being shorter than Mark’s from Queenstown I was there early, and had time to survey the scene, and check out all the campsites. It was awesome to see the place full of New Zealanders for a change, and every age was represented from babies to life’s more experienced fellas. Eventually Mark appeared out of the dust of the Mavora Road, and together we scoped out the area for the perfect spot.

Old river terraces have made the area multi layered, starting with areas low down by North Mavora Lake (sandfly country). Then mid lying areas with slight elevation for views up the lake at Mt Mavora(1990m) and its other mountain friends (elevated sandfly country). Then finally comes the highest terrace, with views of the lake and also the mountains that surround it (adventurous sandfly country). We chose the top floor of the camping ground, and in the sun we claimed our little spot in paradise for the night. We spent the afternoon chilling out, and munching down some epic snacks, mostly by ourselves up on our own private hill. Little did we know that we were about to be joined by a united nation of humans there for a party in a pristine paradise…

Sunsetting Behind Mt Eldon(1625m)

New Zealand. What a place to explore!

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