Spitting Image

When I was at Black Gully Reserve on 28 December, I found a spittle bug on a slender stem of a tree. I hadn't seen one of these so convenient to photograph before and it was fairly well-lit. It turns out they're pretty interesting creatures! Below the photo I'll give you a 'gift-link' to a... Continue Reading →

Blue Gloss

Yesterday we returned to Commissioners Track and spent some time on part of it, mostly checking out the weeds and the native plants. We're right into summer now and lots of plants are flowering including grasses. We found some very pretty weed flowers, and some rather nice native flowers too. But today's post is about... Continue Reading →

Big Bare Dam

A different dam in this post to the ferny one I've been showing, but it's also from the gold mining days and it's still an earth dam. The difference is that this one's in Central Otago and its inside wall is lined with rocks (the work is done wonderfully as one of the builders, David... Continue Reading →

Remnant

Perhaps the remnant held a claim boundary peg back in the day. It was illegal to sluice away a peg. I was intrigued by the horizontal hole at the top through which I could see the blue sky. The two 'remnant' photos were taken by me. The photos of Blue Lake and eroded hillside slopes... Continue Reading →

Blue and Gold

Blue Lake at St Bathans in Central Otago was formed through gold mining activity from the 1860s till 1934. Originally the lake was a 120m high hill.. Kildare Hill.. which I've read was demolished via hydraulic sluicing in about 10 years. By using a hydraulic elevator the site of the now-gone hill became an ever-growing... Continue Reading →

Hill > Pit > Lake

On 07 Dec we drove to St Bathans, a gold town established in 1863. (1) The mud brick Vulcan Hotel is fab! (2) Pipes took water to the workings. (3) Blue Lake was originally 120m Kildare Hill which was mined to a 68m deep pit dubbed the 'glory hole'. Mining ceased in 1934 when the... Continue Reading →

Stark Difference

When the gold miners arrived in Central Otago in the 1860s they didn't bat an eyelid at radically and massively transforming the environment. The initial influx of individuals and small groups gave way to larger operations that harnessed the power of water to obliterate large parts of the landscape. They extracted relatively small amounts of... Continue Reading →

Old Orchard

Historic orchard remnant, pear and apricot trees. Planted early-1900s at a small community that grew in the 1860s with the arrival of gold miners and hydraulic sluicing. Stewart Town.. accessed via a walk through 'badlands'-type landscape, a large terrace destroyed and shaped by sluicing and related activities. Bannockburn, Central Otago, New Zealand 31 October. ~first... Continue Reading →

Alpha Street

Yesterday I walked from the highway to Old Cromwell. Along the way I found this public reserve, early afternoon in hot weather. The reserve is alongside Alpha Street and extends down to Lake Dunstan. I rested a while here and looked at a few things. Central Otago, New Zealand. 1) a glance behind me -... Continue Reading →

Birthday Fun

Birthday fun yesterday.. a trek through thyme-strewn Bannockburn sluicings to Stewart Town where the old stone house also boasts an old orchard +lilac bush! The first pic also has California poppies. And earlier, I'd enjoyed a whirl on this twirly thing in a Cromwell playground. Central Otago, New Zealand.

Decision Thyme

Gold miners massively transformed Central Otago, building incredible water systems to sluice hill faces and access gold. We did a wonderful walk today at Bannockburn, through the sluicings to Stewart Town. And wild thyme is everywhere.. Decision Thyme! New Zealand.

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