Queenstown was inundated yesterday with people in Lycra.
It was the running of the annual marathon, and there were over 9,000 participants in the various stages from 10 km, half and full marathons. I am told that 80% of the competitors were from out of town, so the sudden influx of visitors with their companions put a huge strain on everything. The race itself required significant closures of various roads and tracks, so I looked in the other direction for my images. I went to Arrowtown, where the race started, since they had all long since gone South, and went to the Arrow River and Tobin’s Track.
In April, the area is ablaze with Autumn colour, but for now, everything is still a luscious green.
I am unsure what the tree is with the little white flowers, but it seems to release what seems like puffs of snow or cotton wool. The roadsides gutters are full of the white remains.
Later in the day, Mary persuaded me to come out for a walk with Otis to see another flowering tree she had found, with vicious spikes. I was baffled, but my Internet friends soon enlightened me. Any Southerner is probably familiar with the matagouri (Discaria toumatou) or “Wild Irishman”. It is reputedly the only native plant with thorns. And what thorns they are.
This bush was growing on a popular path leading from Lake Hayes Estate towards the lake itself. Otis was scooting along with us on his bicycle, and he really enjoyed the hairy downhill ride from the shrubs back to the valley floor.
And that is enough for this edition.