From Te Anau or Lumsden to Kinloch...
Lumsden and Te Anau both woke to mist this morning, but a 6:30am photo from Alan at the Athol charger to the Group Chat showed that it was only local to each of those towns.
At Lumsden, Melanie from the Royal Mail Hotel came and joined us for a coffee and we chatted about lots of things - their three seasons of accommodation ownership to date - two somewhat thwarted by the pandemic, their EVs, their solar system and all that sort of stuff that interested me, Sophie, Rachel and David.
The trip towards Queenstown and Frankton was lovely with good views on the mountains on the approach. My intention to zip up to The Remarkables skifield was thwarted because I wasn't "carrying chains" as required at the base. So, we diverted to the Frankton Supercharger and, despite having been there a few times in the past, took many wrong turns to find it - much to David's amusement, I'm sure. From there to a carwash and then onto the Gondola for a luge ride.
Queenstown is undergoing some significant road construction around the gondola area so roads were closed everywhere and getting to the gondola involved driving all the way through town, turning right onto Lake Road (competitor to Baldwin Street as the World's Steepest Street, I reckon) and twisting and turning to the gondola park, only to be U-turned because there's construction up there too and the car park and surrounding streets are closed. We were lucky to find a Wilson carpark nearby and started our $4 an hour Start/Stop session on the phone. Wandering up to the gondola base, we saw no tourists at all - until we got into the base station and met a massive queue of people - distancing questionable and decided that we were better to find the local "lolly shop" that Sophie assured me was amazing.
It started raining and the streets of Queenstown were quiet (everyone is at the gondola, of course!) so we visiting the lolly shop and, feeling sorry for them, bought a few little packets, stumbled upon the others in the group who were debating whether to go luging (they did in the end and had a GREAT time), found some lunch and drove quietly out towards Glenorchy, stopping at just about every beach along the way to skip stones, do walks, etc.
At Glenorchy, I topped my car back up to 80% (can't be too careful, eh?) at the Dart River 25kW Charger and then made our way around the lake to Kinloch - popped my head in the door saying hello - and continued on over three river fords to the end of the Greenstone Track. We wandered up there a little bit before returning to dinner and the night at Kinloch.