So there’s this road. It’s a gravel road. It comes off the main road and runs along the boundary of our farm. Directly on the other side of it is a river. The road is only ever used for logging the pine plantation over the hill. They’re logging at the moment, but once they’re done in a month or so that road won’t see any more activity for another thirty years.
We were told the road used to lead to an old work camp back in the day, and that it actually turns to paved cobblestone farther up. Curious, we decided to investigate.
Hopping over the wire fence on our boundary, we followed the dead road along the river. Being a Saturday, there were no logging trucks on the road. We shortly came upon the top of a roaring waterfall which plummeted down in cascades through dense native bush. We had been told there was a waterfall nearby, but weren’t expecting it to be that big. It was difficult to view from up on the road, so we didn’t snap any good pictures. There didn’t seem to be a safe route down the vertical gauntlet of coarse brush and blackberry brambles either. We promised ourselves we’d return another day, prepared to trail-blaze a route to the waterfall’s base.
We continued along the meandering road, large pastoral hills on our right and steep native rainforest to our left. It was so peaceful; what luck to have a quiet road to walk down next to some gorgeous New Zealand jungle. It felt so much more tranquil to know that there wasn’t another soul around for miles.
Almost an hour later we came to a junction. Ahead the road continued – at least that’s what the map had implied. Instead it sort of trailed off into farmland and became gated. Technically the public road would have continued up and eventually joined with the main road, but I guess it’s now mostly overgrown with whoever’s property it runs through. We never did come across those cobblestones.
Forking off was an entrance into the pine plantation, no longer gravel but mud. Entrances into pine forests always look kind of spooky, and this one was no exception. Naturally, we went in.
We walked through the pine forest for five or ten minutes then turned back when we came to a clearing with multiple tracks. Despite being a monoculture, the tall soon-to-be-felled plantation held a peace and charm of its own. The tracks will be great for horse riding when the forestry operations cease, as will the long road leading up to it.
We will definitely be coming back soon to investigate that river and waterfall! What a find!