11. A Morning Walk onto Peak Hill

I set off up Peak Hill early in the morning, about 7am, before the sun got too high and too hot! The gully follows up through the straight bit of shadow lying on a slight diagonal – the one that’s in line with the track you can see running through the grass. I got up it while it was still in shade – perfect! It was a bit skiddy with a very fine coat of shingle on hard packed ground beneath so I went up – and later down – very carefully for a stretch.

The rest of the track was sheer pleasure. I would have LOVED to have seen this field of celmisia a couple of weeks earlier when it was still in flower.
This is a kind of dracophyllum which I know as turpentine – apparently (and I’ve never actually tried it) you can use it to light fires in the rain as it’s got such a perfect oil content for this purpose.
The peak of Peak Hill in the background…
The view from the peak was absolutely stunning as a 360 deg panarama and as usual the photo doesn’t do it justice. This one is looking along Rakaia River towards the Southern Alps.
And the view to the head of Lake Coleridge. The sign you can see tells us that sometime within the last 2 million years (possibly more than once) only the very peak of Peak Hill lay above ice that covered the land. Lake Coleridge was formed by a glacier. You can see outwash terraces (deposited by rivers draining past glaciers) along the sides of many of the hills around.
Looking east towards the Canterbury Plains – Rakaia River on the right and Lake Coleridge on the left.
Common tussock butterfly
Not sure what this is – might have to get an insect book! It’s almost transparent and I could hear it close by before spotting it!
And the best sight of all – Kevin, always there to drop me off and pick me up to and from walks!

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