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Canterbury Tales, NEW ZEALAND

Updated: Jul 10, 2018

My Granny and Grandpa live in a town in South Canterbury, New Zealand called Geraldine, it is half way between Christchurch and Mount Cook. Every year, when we visit them, some of the family go and hike up a big mountain that is just down the road called Little Mount Peel, Dad always says what a fantastic day trip it is but I have never done it because I have never been big enough. This year my friend George and Imogen came to stay from Singapore, they stayed in a house right at the bottom of Little Mount Peel and we climbed it together with their family and lots of mine. We started climbing at 10am, through the forest that was as green as emerald, the birds tweeted all around like the sound of a violins. First, we went through the patch of greenery with the biggest trees I have ever seen, we saw lots of big New Zealand ferns and native birds like Fantails. As we got higher there was less trees and less greenery until we were walking through small bushes and muddy puddles. We tried to walk around the brownest and glummest muddy puddles, half way up dad tried to copy us and swing on a tree to avoid getting muddy… but he got it wrong and slipped, his whole leg got muddy, sometimes it pays to be small and not so heavy.

The climb was harder than walking up the stairs to the school library, and longer than swimming practice. Astonished and amazed, we finally got the top and George, Imogen and I had actually climbed it fast, faster than the adults, but my cousin’s Asti and Toby, and George’s brother Fred were even faster than us!! They are all bigger than us so it was fair and we had all tried our hardest. At the top it was very cloudy and cold, I borrowed dad’s jumper to stay warm. We couldn’t see anything because it was covered in cloud but on the way down we looked out over the fields of wonderful greenery of Canterbury planes. We could see all the way to the sea. It was so steep coming down that I could hardly stop when I started running. Asti had to stop me a few times.

When we finished I felt satisfied and tired, we had been walking for about 5 hours. I took off my shoes and saw my feet had become all wrinkly from slipping in some off the puddles and getting wet feet. We celebrated our mountain victory with a colossal ice cream, bigger than my head. The ice creams in NZ are really good.

There are lots of other adventures to be had around Geraldine, in my next update I will tell you about my adventures on the Rangitata Rafts and Peel Forest Horse Trekking.

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