The weather was a little grey and dull on Easter Sunday and once again it took us a fair while to get out of the house with the distraction of another game of Phase 10, coffee and hot cross buns to wile away the morning. And who could forget the easter egg hunt - the Easter bunny decided it needed to be an indoor one at this holiday house as the weather was threatening rain, but the boys didn’t seem to mind. What we did mind was the early start - blimin clocks going back always mess things up for a few days, most mornings on the holiday this meant the boys were up before 5am, usually Mylo first, and once one is awake when sharing a room they both are!
On this day we headed inland about 50 minutes into the hills of Gisborne to Rere Falls and Rere Rockslides. I was a little disappointed that the flow over the falls was so minimal, but shouldn’t really have been that surprised given the hot and dry summer we’ve had. After taking a few shots, the drizzle started and we headed up the road to see if any brave souls were taking on the Rere Rockslide - which they were. We’d half contemplated that Mark and Noah might give it a go but after watching a few others do it, we decided that a wetsuit should be a minimum requirement - maybe another time! It was still fun watching a few fearless folk flying down the slide at a rate of knots though.
Next stop was the Eastwood Hill Arboretum - although the drizzle looked to have set in and we weren’t sure how much fun we’d have walking around in the wet for a couple of hours. Luckily we managed to nab a brolly at the visitor centre and just as we started walking the rain stopped! The arboretum is a really impressive place and has been cultivated over decades and decades - there are a huge number of trails and extended walks you can do within its boundaries and you could easily lose yourself there for a whole day. One thing that amazed me in general about the whole Gisborne area was how far advanced the autumn colours already were here - given how warm and dry the region is known to be, but perhaps that's actually the reason why?!
Fairly early into our walk, a friendly little fantail befriended us, flitting from one tree to the next and following us for quite some time. He was a little tricky to get a picture of though, as he never stayed in one place very long!
The boys were so intrigued by the fantail, calling to it and encouraging it to keep coming after us!
After a few minutes, he must have decided he was getting out of his natural territory as we walked further into the depths of the forest and as quickly as he'd appeared, suddenly he was gone again.
I loved this clearing we came upon - the algae (or something like that) made for a glorious green glowing reflection of the light above.
High on the hill we found a conker tree, and the boys enjoyed weighing their pockets down completely with as many as they could fit in.
The views from our vantage point showed the lovely autumn colours turning to their best.
Home made tommy knocker anyone?!
This one speaks for itself really?! Boys just being boys. I must admit I am a little envious of their ability to just go when the moment takes them - especially from one who has such an active bladder and is always never too far away from needing the loo - being able to just 'go on demand' would be kinda handy. That's not to say I haven't done my fair share of 'bush wees' either mind you!
The Eastwood Hill Arboretum is well worth the visit - it wasn't a cheap day out at $36 for the family when really all you're doing is going for a little jolly jaunt in the bush but it is a very, very beautiful spot especially at this time of year with all the colours so well on the turn.
It's a place I can imagine some of our nearest and dearest family and friends who are nature lovers would also be in raptures over!