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  • Day90

    We took the High Road to Queenstown

    March 9 in New Zealand ⋅ ☁️ 12 °C

    We met a father and son from London, Ontario, who told us that there were two roads from Wanaka to Queenstown - a high road and a low road through a valley. They suggested the high road as it had wonderful views. So that’s what we did - we took the high road - the Crown Range Road.

    The road starts out fairly straight and flat as it follows a river and goes through pastures with hundreds of sheep. Then the mountains begin. Golden mountains without a single tree on them! Just yellow grasses and a few low bushes. I think that maybe the hard rock is too close to the surface for trees to grow on it.

    We came upon a very strange sight so stopped to take a photo. There was a long fence covered in women’s bras!!! At some point between 1998 and 1999, passers-by began to attach bras to a rural fence. The fence gradually became a well known site as the number of bras grew to hundreds. But some people were offended and stripped the fence of the bras. Other people came and put more and more bras on the fence. It has had a bumpy history. Now there is a pink sign and box for donations for breast cancer and the collection grows.

    Right across the street from Bradrona, there is a historic building. The Cardrona Hotel was built in 1863 and it is one of NZ’s oldest and most iconic hotels. Once it was a “retreat for old miners to rest their weary heads”. Now it is a lovely 17 room hotel used by wintertime skiiers and summertime wedding guests. Money lines the ceiling of the lounge. They also serve great coffee so we ordered 2 flat whites and a in the garden.

    Moving on, we stopped at a viewpoint on the highest point on the road. We could see Queenstown in the distance. Quite the view! A trail continued even higher so of course my mountain goat husband was chomping at the bit to walk even higher. Not me...I went about halfway, then put my jacket down, sat on it, took out the binoculars and enjoyed the views while he marched on. Enough mountain climbing for me. He returned in an hour with some great photos though.

    Another viewpoint took us out on a narrow trail on a ridge with drop offs on either side. A nice lady offered to take our photo.

    A little further, we saw a corrugated metal flag fence. A Canadian flag was there.

    Finally, we arrived in Queenstown, a tourist zoo. Not our cup of tea. We got out of there as fast as we could and headed to Arrowtown where we are staying.
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