Awoke to the sound of rain potter patting on the rooftop this morning. Just another lovely day for fishing here in New Zealand. Great to have some down time, but it was a little quiet without the guys. Decided to get a late start after a big breakfast of eggs, toast, and sausages washed down with some coffee and cranberry.
Perfect weather for some b&w photos and I had just the place in mind. We went into the upper waiau river the other day and the landscape was just amazing and huge. I thought the drama of the landscape and clouds would make for some interesting photos and maybe the river would be clear too. I got the combo from the DOC folks online and registered my car for the day. I decided to go in at the next gate as the drive in the other day was long and dicey at times.
As luck would have it, there was a DOC truck just ahead of me and the guy opened the gate for me on the way in and agreed with my assessment of the weeather as clearing. The drive in was awesome, I ended up getting up to snow level as I meandered through the pass and down towards the river.it was about an hours drive with a very steep up and down on bothe sides of the pass. I expected the river to be dirty or slightly off color at least, but it gin clear! The skies were opening up and blue skies suddenly were everywhere, I decided to go for a little walk up the river to see if I could find my one dumb fish for the day.
Short walk ended up being a death march as this was the best spotting weather I've had in three weeks here in NZ. I saw three fish, each of which was huge. Only problem is that they were stuck to the bottom and not moving, so despite my begging and pleading...no fish for me and I ended up having a 2 hr walk back to the car, nothing out of the ordinary for a day with Toby in New Zealand...here's where it gets interesting and more aptly follows the clusterfuck of a trip this has been.
After a slow, 45 minute drive back out and over the pass I got to the gate only to find that the combination to the lock that I wrote down was wrong. This was at 530 or so and about 70 miles from the nearest house. So, I grabbed some stuff and my one granola bar plus bottle of water and headed to the main road with hopes that someone would be driving by. There was a dick driving by that basically told me it was my problem and that he'd pick me up on his way back into hammer if he saw me on the road after dark. My only choice was to start walking and I hoped to make it to a backcountry hut by dark so that I'd at least have shelter for the night. 2 hours later a couple cars come hauling up the road and stop to see what I'm doing. They were young guys dressed in camp to do some goose shooting after dark in the high country. Luckily, they had the old and new gate combo and gave me a ride back to the car and gate. It all worked out in the end plus I got to spend some quality alone time with myself debating the seriousness of my situation. Everyday is an adventure.