Thursday, January 17, 2013

Whitewater Rafting with Extras

We left Abel Tasman on the day after Christmas and started heading toward the West Coast. On the way, we stopped at Buller Gorge for a whitewater rafting trip. We met our guide at this historic iron bridge and learned that we were the only ones going on the trip!

We also learned that the water level was pretty high because of all the rain they'd been getting, and the boat would be pretty light and tipsy with just the three of us in it. I think our guide was a little worried, but we assured him we had done plenty of whitewater rafting in Colorado. The rapids proved to be just the right level of thrill and excitement. We had to paddle pretty hard at times, but none of us fell out or had any scary moments.

Because it was just us on the trip, our guide let us do some fun "extras." Here's a picture of Zack swimming through a small rapid (on purpose). Our guide wanted him to see what it was like; he swallowed a lot of water!

There were several little waterfalls along the way, and we got to stop for some pictures near them.

We also stopped for some cliff jumping. I didn't jump from the highest ledge (I was saving my bravery for activities later in the trip), but Zack did. Here he is mid-jump.

When we got back to the bridge, we had hot chocolate and cookies and cake. The only bad part was that I got eaten alive by sandflies on my hands and feet/ankles, which I didn't realize until a day later would create about 35 bites that would itch like CRAZY for a few days. Ugh-what is with me getting itchy bites in every country we visit? We soon bought some sandfly repellent and learned to wear more clothes when these nasty flies were around!

So other than the post-trip sandfly bites, it was a fun few hours of floating through the gorge, playing around, and paddling through some decent rapids. I'd say that makes for a good afternoon in New Zealand!


  1. How are you and Zack going to survive coming back to this boring country?

    1. Ha-I think we find a way to make wherever we live rather exciting, don't you? Remember Zack's multiple ER visits?!