Some fellow club members organized a field trip to Castlepoint.
I usually regard myself as a solitary photographer, or at best, one who prefers very small groups. I had to persuade myself to participate, and I am so very glad I did. We left Lower Hutt at the very leisurely hour of 9 am and drove up to meet the rest of the group in a nice coffee shop in Featherston. The forecast for the weekend was rough, so we were pleasantly surprised at how good things were in the Wairarapa. Just out of Masterton, the three of us in our car stopped to capture the Autumn leaves at the spectacular Maungahina Stud. We visited here on our last trip to Castlepoint, and it was as we remembered it, though the leaf-shedding was a bit further advanced this time.
The rolling green landscape of the Central Wairarapa is a joy to behold, and there are so many roads and paths that invite further exploration. While we got sidetracked on the farm, the others had pressed on and phoned us from Castlepoint to ask what was taking so long. Guiltily we resumed the journey.
When we arrived at the rented house, we could scarcely believe our luck. The view of the lighthouse from the street was wonderful, and in November or December with that Pohutukawa in flower it would be even more so.
Looking back down the street there was a splendid view across a small patch of intervening farmland to Castle Rock. After we had settled in and chosen rooms and beds, we went down to the beach.
Despite the chilly temperatures, there were surfers catching the waves in the gap at the Southern end of the lagoon.
Some of my friends chose to climb Castle Rock. I stayed low and played with the ND filter to try for a less usual view of Castlepoint.
While we were there and the others were up the hill, a small bird came fluttering out of the grass at the back of the beach and began running around pecking around the rocks. It ran everywhere at high speed, rather than hopping. I guessed that it was New Zealand Pipit (Anthus novaeseelandiae). A Facebook friend thought it might be a Dunnock, but the majority view was with the Pipit.
We ended the very satisfying day with a good steak dinner in the local pub watching a very poor performance by the All Blacks who came perilously close to losing to England.