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Facts, Figures & Shrek

Christchurch, New Zealand

Christchurch, our first NZ city. Bodies eased themselves down from the bus after the long trip from Queenstown.

The landscape on the way to Ch-ch reminded many of the Cariboo, sans sheep. Sheep, sheep sheep! The hills and paddocks were alive with them, as one well expected would be the case in NZ. None compared to the legendary Shrek., a Merino ram. Our driver, Brian, related the story of drovers finding Shrek deep in the high hills with a coat of fleece beyond belief. The soon-to-be celebrity had lived as a rogue for six years, escaping the shears until discovered. He was rounded up and transported to civilization where he met the paparazzi and the shearers. Shrek's fleece weighed 60 lbs. and provided enough wool to make vests for 20 men! The average fleece weighs 10 lbs. and an exceptional fleece weighs up to 35 lbs.

Shrek was only one of many "-est" facts and figures that we heard along the way - oldest, largest, first. We didn't doubt Brian's knowledge but Rick-Kyle turned it into a new drinking game, not that the Ebb Tide needs an excuse to tipple! So, whenever Brian described something using an "est', everyone called out, "DRINK!" and tipped backed their beer with a laughter chaser. Every ear was tuned into Brian as we headed for Ch-ch, hoping to be the first to holler, "DRINK!" No one missed a fact or figure. However, the question is how many remembered them!

permalink written by  Shane & Norma on April 29, 2009 from Christchurch, New Zealand
from the travel blog: "Not Just Another Rugby Tour" - New Zealand, Samoa and Australia
tagged Rugby, Shrek and Sheep

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Black Mountain

Myddfai, United Kingdom

Myddfai is a really small place south of Llandovery, home to the 6 mile or so single lane track which is the only way into the Beautiful Black Mountain in the west area of the Brecon Beacons. Whereas every other 4 legged thing was a 4 x 4 jobbie I was stuck in my Corsa faced with the sort of road that makes the one to the Isle of Skye seem tame. Picture a 6 mile rollercoaster complete with dodgy track, hedges and sheep and you've pretty much got it. I didn't know what 'get out the bloody way' was in Welsh so spent 10 minutes waiting for a fluffy family of four to trundle along into the nearest Field.

As long as you're prepared to do plenty of reversing to let the various middle classes in their land rovers to pass and u turns when you realise you've ended up in someone's farm it's well worth making the journey. If you need a pee whilst travelling, go on one of the service stations before jnct 32 on the M4, or stop of in Llandovery (just make sure you've got 20p handy).

I've still got no idea which bit I climbed was Black mountain, there are 4 sort of peaks and I got to the one that looked the highest so I guess that was it. Unlike Snowdon which gave me fog at the top the views from the top of Black mountain are spectacular. Best view is across Llyn y fan fach which you circle on your way to the top. If you going on a warm day take 3 pairs of socks and 3 tops, 1 for the drive there, 1 for the climb and one for the drive back and don't forget to cool your feet off in the stream on the way back. This is also King Arthur territory so have a look for the lady in the lake while you're down there :)

Rossifer x

permalink written by  rossifer on May 31, 2009 from Myddfai, United Kingdom
from the travel blog: rossifer's Travel Blog
tagged BlackMountain, Myddfai and Sheep

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