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Stay tuned for new features including journey maps, some missing posts, linked photo albums, minor tweaks and ultimately... the earlier trips...

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Day 9 - NZ

Cookie says...
Finally, Cardrona! It looked closed in from the bottom of the hill but once we arrived, it was basically a blue bird day.

Pilty vegged out till the half day pass kicked in and Mikey hung around the main drag while I checked out Captain's. I decided that Whitestar was the way to go and pumped out some very quick runs. It was fairly busy and there was a comp on which didn't help.

I joined the other two for their final runs and was nearly taken out buy some rouge skier and definitely taken out by Pilt.

I checked out the shop on the way out as Julie had asked me to get some new shirts however I haven't bought any this year as the colours are vomit inducing and styles that went out with the 80's. There's definitely something there for the Gen Y's at Bridgy to pick up.

Once home Pilty rang to book a table up at Skyline. We've discovered that he doesn't handle analogue devices very well as he dropped the landline which killed the call and he forgot his mobile number. Either that or he was intimidated by a chick wanting his number.

We arrived for dinner and at first the staff gave me a dirty look until they realised that Pete Humphreys wasn't with me and waved us through (Pete once had eaten them out of house and home). It was a good feed culminating with Mikey and I giving Pilty dating advice. Now he has no chance with the ladies.

Time to pack and sleep before heading home tomorrow.

Mikey says...
A bit tired today because I spent most of last night and the early morning watching the national geographic channel. At least I now know how to make the new Mercedes truck, a Rolls Royce Phantom, a 20,000 tonne ice-breaker cargo ship, and how to remove a 45 tonne broken keel. Knowledge I'm sure will come in very handy soon.

Stomach was still a little funny today so took it nice and easy on the slopes at Cardrona. Heaps of fun just going up and down and up and down and... well you get the idea.

Dinner was at the Skyline restaurant. Pilty and I had heaps of fun saying things to annoy Cookie. He's just too easy to annoy.

Decided to power walk part of the way home. For some reason the others did walk with me. Probably just couldn't keep up with my lightening pace.

Made it home to finish the last levels of Plants v Zombie's. Oh yeah, the hours I spent playing that game have paid off for sure. If zombies do ever threaten your town, just call me up and I can give you advice on the best plants to take out the brain eaters.

Pilty says...
I still wasn't feeling great so I had a half-a as I still wanted to try something different. Once the low cloud cover started to disappear, the place looked glorious - so large and open. I did three different types of runs; the magic carpet and two other greens.

At night, I overindulged in both great tasting food and possibly useful information.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Day 8 - NZ

Cookie says...
Whilst we weren't game to head to Cardrona today, we weren't too keen to be stuck in the unit again after yesterdays effort so we headed out and about. First stop was to get some brunch from Fergbaker and on to some Frisbee golf. We were all equally ordinary at it, especially when the disks aren't the same disks you use when playing ultimate disk, so the end result was pretty close.

After a bit of a break back at the base, we headed back out for a spot of mini golf. Mikey had been itching to visit this place ever since Luke had raved about it so it was time to see what the fuss is all about.

It was certainly one of the most detailed of courses but it wasn't suited to my putting skillz. I might have lost but I prefer to think that I got better value for my money.

For dinner it was Fergburger and it was busy as usual.

Mikey says...
Today was golf day. Frisbee Golf and then Mini Golf. I was pretty much amazing at both but held myself back to make the others fell not so... loserish.

I looove my super-slow-mo.

Dinner for me was a roast pork belly burger. Delish!!! Hopefully tomorrow we're all off to Cardrona and not just off.

Also hoping that we make it through the rest of the trip too as the food poisoning has given Cookie gas that is almost levitating him from the ground. Luckily none of us smoke or our doom would be almost certain.

Pilty says...
I still wasn't feeling the best, so wasn't going to be hitting the slopes today anyway. Was nice of the other guys to hang out with me instead (even if it was just to cover their softness). The day did however get better (unlike my stomach) with a couple of different versions of golf (which in itself I find very boring).

I had also been wanting to visit the indoor mini golf after doing some pre-trip research. I had also heard rumors that there was a second mini golf course on the other side of the road but it didn't look as good (perhaps next time?).

Fergburger food is sooo tasty! I choose a larger burger just to make up for the lack of eating yesterday. No wonder it is such a popular place.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Day 7 - NZ

Cookie says...
Yesterday I wrote Cardrona awaits. Well, it's still waiting as we didn't make it. Sadly we have succumbed to food poisoning after last nights dinner so today was basically a write-off. Pilty was pretty crook half the night so didn't get any sleep. Around lunch I managed to sneak out for some bits and pieces but started feeling dodgy myself so headed back to the ranch. Dinner was pepper crackers and lemonade followed by a broken, sweaty sleep.

Mikey says...
Was hoping to do runs at Cardrona today but the only runs I made were to the toilet. Woke up still tasting last nights dinner and thought I'd be okay but then the guts started tumble turning. I didn't get it as bad as Pilty but it ruled me out for the day. Not even Ironguts Cookie made it through unscathed.

Overall, miserable day.

Pilty says...
Mikey was right. We must have been on a ship as we all got sea sickness.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Day 6 - NZ

Cookie says...
After a day off, it was good to get back on the snow. We headed back to Remarks today although it was an overcast day which meant flat light making it tricky to see the detail on the snow. Around lunch time a window of an hour opened where the sun broke through to allow some quick runs. Mikey had fun having a crack at some of the park boxes while Pilty loitered around the green runs.

Once home and showered, Pilty pretended to be domesticated and put on a load of washing before heading for dinner. Went to a seafood and steak joint for dinner. It never ceases to amaze me how odd Mikey can be. We sat down and after a while he started making the table creak and move the drinks and candle around. Very peculiar man.

Tomorrow Cardrona awaits!

Mikey says...
Back to the Remarkables today. It was pretty cloudy but not a bad day. I tried to do some of the fun boxes on the slopes and they went great until the end bit where you have to get off with out stacking it. Couldn't really get that bit down pat.

Mikey showing off his skillz.

Dinner at HMS Britannia tonight. It was all we could manage as I was dressed as a chav and it was the only place that accepted chavs. Apparently it's not a restaurant but a real ship!!! The wooden table even creaked in the waves and the candle and glasses slid from side to side with the roll of the ship. Simply amazing!

Pilty says...
I managed 1785 vert metres today. No idea what that really means, but I went up and down a mountain 17 times. I also felt brave enough to try out the tunnel which was a step up for me. There is photo evidence of this occurrence and as far as I'm concerned, means I'm better than Cookie as there is no evidence he has achieved such a feat.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Day 5 - NZ

Cookie says...
Another blue bird this morning but unfortunately we're not heading up the hill. On these trips it's usually a team effort and doing it my way but this time the majority ruled so we went for a drive instead. First stop was Arrowtown for the Chinese settlement, a stroll up the street and pies for morning tea.

Previously I had been recommended a venison pie after I'd finished a steak and mushroom but this trip I made up for it and I have to say it was probably the yummiest pie I have ever had.

Next stop was the Kawarau Bridge to watch some bungee jumping however the only other tourists there were a bunch of Asian's and as expected, they took a stack of photos even though no one was jumping. As with the last trip we headed for Puzzling World on the edge of Wanaka. This time I managed to get to the green tower which we'd missed last time but we were still beaten by a Rodda.

The return home was via the Crown Range with a stop at the Cardrona Hotel for lunch. We had burgers which were okay but don't have anything on what Fergburger creates. I ducked into town for some supplies after getting home and it was soup for dinner followed by watching the Bledisloe Cup match between us and the Kiwi's.

Mikey says...
Day off today. Pilty and I could tell Cookie wanted a day off but just couldn't bring himself to say it so we took one for the team to help him out. Went to Arrowtown and had a lamb and mint pie... well I had almost all of a lamb and mint pie. Cookie took a... Cookie size bite out of it before I realised that the pie I was holding had a V on it for venison and his had an L on it for Lamb. Mental note will have to watch my food from now on to make sure Cookie isn't turning into the Cookie monster and start eating everything on site.

Then on to Puzzling World. I finished the maze first even though Pilty and Cookie didn't realised that it was a competition. Mim will be proud as I just kept turning left, then left, then left again, and again, and again, and then left, and then... ALL OF A SUDDEN... I turned left. Oh yeah it takes brains to do this sort of stuff.

All blacks match tonight. Come on All Blacks!

Pilty says...
For some reason I have a really sore neck, so Cookies suggestion of going for a drive was quite convenient. I had been starting to wonder why they called this country the land of the sheep; I now have had my doubts alleviated. Puzzling World was quite fun and I think I won the maze challenge because I found the towers in the correct order. Union tonight; I still don't understand the interest in such a boring, stop/start game, no wonder Cookie hit the sack before it finished...

Friday, August 17, 2012

Day 4 - NZ

Cookie says...
Off to a slow start but we made it up to the Remarks. It was good to make it back here as I really enjoy some of the runs that hang off the Sugarbowl lift. I spent the first few hours here before checking up on the others and then heading over to the Shadow Bowl chair.

I haven't spent much time over this side of the ski field. The only time I'd been here was on a closed in, windy and cold day and one run was enough for me however today was a blue bird and I could go quick, very quick.

One of the neat things that the electronic ticketing allows is tracking stats. Apparently I did almost twice the amount of vertical today as my first day with about the same number of runs. We continued the tradition of seeing cars in ditchesbut we didn't get a photo of it : (.

Back at the ranch we cracked out Settlers which Mikey closely won and then knocked up some bangers and mash. After some footy and readying, it was time to study the back of my eyelids.

Mikey says...
Up to the Remarks today and it was heaps of fun. I helped Pilty out a little bit on the beginner slope and then went off to the green runs. After lunch Pilty and I went up the chair lift and he did pretty well on his first run down. After that I left Pilty to practice and then tried to get as many runs in as possible before closing time. Have to beat Cookie with my stats! Shoulder feels okay as long at I don't put any pressure on it... which means it's okay to board. Woohoo!

Pilty says...
After almost drowning in a pool of my own sweat halfway through the night due to trying out a new discovery called the electric blanket (it was on the lowest setting!), I headed out with the guys to a place named after me - The Remarkables. I started on the easy slopes to renew my confidence and later on, guided by Mikey, did a few runs on a green slope. Won't be long until we put Cookie to shame. I only had one major stack; which Mikey managed to witness (I still maintain I did it just for his entertainment).

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Day 3 - NZ

Cookie says...
Today's start was good and bad. It was a blue bird day and my foot was still a hurtin so Mikey and Pilty headed up to Coronet and I nerded it up back at camp. I quickly rediscovered that TV here is pretty bad so I headed into town to look around for a few things and to give my foot some exercise.

After the others returned we headed out to beat the rush and ended up at Winnies. We overheard a comment from some other patrons who complained about a cool draft which was funny considering we were sitting outside.

Back to the unit for some more cards, hopeless TV and rest.

Mikey says...
Well Cookie couldn't make it today because he's getting old and decrepit so it was just me and Pilty. The runs looked a bit icy and it didn't take me long to find out how icy it was. I stacked it on my first run down and my shoulder took most of the impact. Shoulder is feeling quite tender at the moment and I'll find out in the morning if my body can shake it off or I'm going to have to be old and decrepit like Cookie and take a day off. Other than that had heaps of fun going up and down and up and down and ... well you get the idea.

Pilty says...
Cookie should drink a cup of cement. I decided to fight my lack of interest in snow and give snowboarding a crack. I took the beginner package with 2 lessons and afterwards the first instructor was keen to let me go on to some advanced stuff. Sure I was finding it easy, but now I know why the other guys board instead of ski. I may however be starting to understand the soreness that comes with old age.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Day 2 - NZ

Cookie says...
Mikey and I headed up Coronet today while Pilty decided to hold the sofa down. If there's one thing that's been easy to notice with Kiwi ski fields, it's there's always something upgraded or new every few years. This time NZSki have caught up to Europe fields and have upgraded their life tickets to smart cards.

For the most part we hung around the green slope while Mikey got used to boarding again. He made some good progress although we did make one mistake and ended up on a T-Bar. Stumps were pulled up a little short of full time but as I had one sore foot, I didn't mind.

We think Pilty had changed seats and may even have ventured out. Mikey knocked up dinner and we cracked out some cards. I just hope my foot isn't as sore tomorrow so I can get out as it should be a blue bird day.

Mikey says...
First day on the snow was great. A few stacks but other than that it was fun to get back on the board again.

At first I liked the fog that was rolling in... until I tried going down a run with the fog set in. Not good. Couldn't see much. Oh and I completely took out a skier (when the weather was clear so I can't blame it on the fog). He was stationary and I didn't stop in time, thankfully the only thing that was hurt was my ego.

Pilty says...
I happen to enjoy walking around each new town on the first day I visit, thus I decided snow was not on the agenda for me today. I walked through the whole city and took it all in. Cookie will be proud of me for not consuming any of the fast food available (yet).

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Day 1 - NZ

Cookie says...
Another trip and another travel day to kick it off. You quickly get sick of the early start and the commute but it's a necessary evil. We hoped out to BNE, skipped to AKL and jumped to ZQN. We've come full circle. Five years ago Mikey and I came here and this blog was born. Now we're back and dragged Pilty with us.

After checking in we strolled around town to give Pilty a idea of what Queenstown is like. For dinner we ended up at Flames which is a South African steak and ribs joint that Kylie, Morgan, Pitt and I tried back in 2009.

After a good feed, picking up Mikey's board and some Greed, it was time to rest up for our first day.

Mikey says...
Woo hoo... back to NZ for some boarding. Really going to be great. The place we're staying has two room, one with 2 beds and one with a double. Cookie got the double because he snores. I heard him during the night and honestly I'm sure Julie must sleep with ear plugs in. Anyway looking forward to boarding...

Pilty says...
After getting up super early (no idea why people would choose to be up before the sun in winter. or any other time of the year for that matter), we headed to Brisbane's international airport to catch our flight New Zealand, the land of sheep... of which I'm yet to see any - disappointing! So far just seems like home. or at least a small coastal town at home.

We managed to score a table at the flames restaurant for some an awesome meal and Cookie looked good in a bib!