Another s-l-o-w, snails pace day which suited me just fine. I've tootled my way to just south of Hokitika taking in the sights and sounds of a couple of beaches and Greymouth along the way. It's been a grey day which hasn't really done much for my enthusiasm to get out and about with the camera. I did however stop at Punakaiki. Well, you have to really - it's such an iconic stopping spot. I remember visiting them with dad on his first trip over here and was thinking about that as I walked around them today. Back in 'those' days (over 30 years ago!) the rocks were part of a larger ecologically significant area known as the Pororari Ecological Area but as far as I can recall there were no restrictions on where you could wander, no sealed walkways, few if any barriers, few people and certainly no shops! I think I've got some pictures of me lolling on some of the pancake rocks which you most certainly can't do now. Today, the whole area is part of the Paparoa National Park which was opened less than a year after dad's visit. With that status comes Department of Conservation oversight, investment in infrastructure, safety and education and a consequential ballooning of visitor numbers. Sadly for today's visitors the tide was low so the blow-hole display wasn't performing. It's always a very pleasant walk though, and today was no different.
This pic isn't particulalry noteworthy but my eyes were drawn to the red mark that, from a distance, looked like it had been spray painted onto the rocks. (Look in large - can you see it?) Closer inspection (thanks to my 200mm lens) showed that it wasn't spray paint but was in fact some fabric. I wonder if someone's scarf had blown off one day, been caught up in the movement of the tides and then been deposited on the rocks with an incoming surge.
I will continue to crawl south again tomorrow - I have an idea for an image but the grey cloudy skies are a real spoiler.