The Lone Willow

Tuesday 21st March


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An alarm-free sleep in - for the second time this trip.  The rain was forecast to continue but it was dry when we woke around 8:30.  Some climbers were making their way up the rockface in front of us and we watched them for a while.  

Simon cleaned and packed my bike, and with chores done, we headed into town for coffee and to purchase a MeroMero Piha handlebar bag that I had discovered yesterday in a cute little shop, the Revology Concept Store.  

It was very cold, with a biting wind when we left the house and snow had fallen on the top of some of the surrounding mountains which looked sensational as the cloud began to lift. I was wearing three layers and still feeling cold, but Simon claimed he was fine in his shorts.

After coffee, we walked around the Lake to see the famous Wanaka Tree, also known as the Wanaka Willow, which sits alone in the water at the southern end of the lake.  There were heaps of people taking photos and we had to bide our time to take some shots free of people.  

We continued on to the Waterfall reserve before retracing our steps back to town and an excellent lunch at Relishes.  This time the seafood chowder was generous and filling, and Simon enjoyed his goaty roti.

It seemed fitting that our last walk of the trip would be the Mount Iron track, right at our back door.  A glacier carved knoll, Mount Iron rises  some 250 metres above the surrounding countryside.  The path was fairly easy as it wound its way to the lookout with views across Lake Wanaka and Lake Hawea as well as into the town itself.

For our last night, we planned a celebratory dinner at Wanafusion, with time for a glass of wine before we go, just so we don't need to bring it home with us.