7. Walking on Old Volcanics

We saw Kevin’s family in Christchurch while was really nice – we hadn’t caught up with any of them over the Christmas/New Year break so it was about time. One of Kevin’s nephews is a mean hunter and fisherman so we ate paua and venison and I got to help make paua and bacon sausages! Buzzed again!!

With Kevin’s niece and nephew I walked along the Port Hills, part of Banks Peninsula which is built mainly of ancient volcanic material from at least five different time periods.

Pre-walk photo which a gentleman sitting nearby kindly took for us.
Looking out over west Christchurch. Spot the smoke top left of the photo – we wondered whether this was an accidental fire or a controlled burn-off of stubble fields. Within the last three days a train set fire to the scrub next to the railway tracks out Templeton way and caused major traffic jams as firefighters rallied to put it out.
Weaving in and out of outcrops of rock.
A big lump of volcanic rhyolite. You can do geological tours through these hills with knowledgeable people/paperwork, so this is something I would like to do in the future.
Looking out over east Christchurch.
The character-filled Lyttleton and Lyttleton Harbour.
Mac is such a great dog and is enjoying the walk – and the views!
This monument was built to commemorate early European women settlers who trudged up from Lyttleton Harbour, often after weeks at sea, over this very spot and down into Christchurch and their new life. It made me think of a book I read as a child called The Runaway Settlers by Elsie Locke.
We stopped at the Christchurch Gondola for the toilet and to fill our water bottles/hydration sacks. We’ll have to ride it another time – it looked enticing and we were very tempted due to the heat we were walking through! When we got to this point, a sign told us we were passing by world war II 3.7 inch anti aircraft batteries.
There were sheep on the tops, sheltering from the hot sun in any bit of bank or tree they could find. There were a few large pine trees and most of them had sheep beneath their branches.
Lyttleton Harbour to the right; Sumner, where we are headed, to the left.
Big macrocarpa pines being removed using a variety of machinery and tools.
Down the track into Sumner. Mac finally agreed to a huge bowl of water – he’d basically refused it so far…and lasted incredibly well.
This friendly donkey was on a small farm as we headed into the township of Sumner. It was so friendly that it came running to us even when we were a distance away!! What a cutie.
These gabion baskets were filled with stone and built up to make a wall all along the Sumner Cliffs. Notice that some have established tussocks growing out of them. These were all along the cliffs as the rocks here are still very unstable due to the Christchurch Earthquakes of 2010 and 2011. All along the other side of Sumner, high up on the steep hills, ran what looked like strong deer fencing which was stopping boulders from being able to roll down on that side. These Sumner people are resilient!
Near the town centre – the walls go all the way around and along the cliffs to keep people safe.
Destination reached. We all had BIG icecreams here, yum yum. There were two radio stations giving away freebies so we did a bit of that too! My nephew had a swim while my niece and I went for short walks, phoned Kevin to get a lift home, and sat relaxing in the warm early evening.

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