Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Day 8– Two metres of rain per annum

Coromandel Peninsula


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Today we drove to the east coast of the Coromandel to take a ride on the Driving Creek Railway.
Its overcast today, but not raining….yet… there is a new rain front on the way! Yes they can get up to 2 metres of rain a year, Armidale would wash away…



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Anyway, back in 1973 potter Barry Brickell, came to Coromandel to set up an artists retreat.
He built a narrow gauge train line and a train to get up the hill to get the clay for his pots.
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Then in 1990 the bank manager complained about his lack of loan repayments so he started taking tourists for train rides.
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Barry added to the line every year, it has switchbacks and zig zags, its now about 3kms. Great engineering! He made the bricks in the pottery and many of the retaining walls are made of 1000s of bottles, leftovers from the visiting artists.   He’s now 84 and has gifted the whole shebang to the nation on his death.
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At the top is the Eyeful Tower for the views. Barry's other project is the restoration of the native NZ forest  and has planted 100s of Kauri trees.
Below is the view from the top a bit cloudy still.
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We then returned to Pauanui by the west coast, making a few stops to take photos while the sun is shining!
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We have bought some nice Fish and Mussels for our dinner tonight.. Yum!
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