Day 41,42 and 43 Cromwell

Arrived here late morning and while waiting for out first night hotel room to be ready, we first stopped at the Heritage area in town for lunch at the local market and then we headed out to Cornish Point for a walk along the side of Lake Dunstan -Lake Dunstan is a man-made lake and reservoir in the South Island of New Zealand. The lake was formed on the Clutha River as a result of the construction of the Clyde Dam, filling in four controlled stages beginning in April 1992 and completed the next year. We walked 3.5 miles out to the coffee boat and were lucky to be there, 10 minutes before it closed for the day. And then walked back to the car. We passed a number of cyclists and decided to hire some bikes for the next day and do the complete track to Clyde.

The weather was dry but overcast, which is ideal for cycling, but again a little bit of Googling last night indicated that this was no gentle path and not for the faint of heart! “The Lake Dunstan Trail links the townships of Clyde and Cromwell. The trail offers cyclists and walkers a challenging 55km ride (Grade 2-3) through unique and fascinating landscapes so characteristic of Central Otago as it journeys along Lake Dunstan, the Kawarau River and the mighty Clutha River Mata-au. This route climbs 2,837 ft with a max elevation of 1,029 ft then descends -2,940 ft. It was only recently opened in May 2021 .” Just after the coffee boat there is the highest climb with lots of narrow zig zags both on the way up and down the other side. Thank goodness we had the sense to hire EBikes but it was still a technical challenge for me as the track was very winding. I had my Garmin watch tracking and we cycled just over 27 miles then shuttled back to Cromwell. One of the things my watch does is tracks heart rate and then overlays it against gradient. It was funny to see it confirmed that my highest heart rate was not actually the climb up but further along where the path is flat, with lots of twisty bends, very narrow and with a drop off to the lake on one side. A very technical bit for me, and happy to say I negotiated it well and with plenty of encouragement from my riding coach (Rob) who was just behind me. We only took video and that needs editing so here is what someone else had to say about the ride.

We moved into our next location in Cromwell and struck gold, is owned by Expedia and they combine properties that are also part of VRBO, although that is not obvious when using the Hotel app. So we are in a VRBO for the next 2 nights, the lounge/kitchen area must be about 30ft by 40ft and then we have panoramic windows looking out onto a deck that is overlooking a small inlet off the lake. So today we are going to do nothing but enjoy our beautiful surroundings and just relax.

And here are the animal and flower images, ok some of the animals may not be real. It was interesting to note a few things, if you look at the vineyard image, you will see that every other gap is left free to grow wild flowers and grasses. Also not clear in the images above but all along the trail is what we thought was Heather but is actually wild Thyme and the smell was amazing.