Archive for the ‘New Zealand’ Category

Dunedin Sunset

I have the extreme misfortune of being housed within 200 yards, er, metres, of Dunedin’s Botanical Gardens. Sadly, the weather is only allowed to have one clear day/week over here but it just means I have to take advantage of them when I can. Yesterday was one of those days and happily included a trip up the Taieri Gorge Railway complete with all you can eat BBQ. I’m still sifting through the hundreds of pictures from the train ride through the countryside so I will be adding one or two of those onto T.A.G. soon. For the most part, shooting from a moving train tends to be unhelpful when it comes down to setting up tripod brackets (who would have thought?) so I will do my best to handle a few single-shots in the next few days. As we walked back home from the train station, I decided that even though I was already quite tired, I had to take advantage of the visible sunset and veered off towards the gardens. Spectacularly, they are spread across a small, level area that then sprawls up the side of a large foothill. Finding a clearing in the trees, I set up shop just as the sun found a gap in the sparse clouds…

The gardens are stunning this time of day if you're lucky enough to see sunlight. The University Clocktower is actually visible down the hill: Dunedin, NZ

St. Clair Beach

Well, I made it safely to New Zealand and so far the prettiest thing I’ve seen has been the flight in. Weather is pretty touch and go in Dunedin (pronounced Du-KNEE-din) and I have a feeling I’m going to be battling total cloud cover for most of the time I’m going to be here. On Saturday, I went with an international student from France to a farmer’s market type thing that happens every Saturday morning and asked her how many sunny days she’d seen over here since she had already been in New Zealand for about 7 months. “I’ve been here all winter… do you really want to know?”

Fortunately, yesterday was about halfway clear for most of the day and we decided to take a bus to the nearest beach, St. Clair. Very windy. Water was very cold. The blowing sand was very painful. Other than that it was gorgeous! We walked up the beach a ways and after a few hours we got back on the bus and headed back, stopping for an outrageously good ice cream snack along the way. Below, a few of my friends climbed on some long-abandoned posts that must have been part of a pier at some point. Weirdly, there’s a small island (not pictured) that looks to be a few miles off the coast and the line formed by these posts points straight to it.

Biggest challenge here? Holding the camera steady in the gusting wind while it snaps off three quick ones: Dunedin, NZ