Monday, August 17, 2020

One more.....for the road...

 Bit lucky to get a skate in very early this morning .  We had a few good frosts and I found ice I could stand on yesterday while out mountain biking so decided to go back this morning to see if I could skate.    Hard and smooth and became noisy as I skated and great to get another one in this year - the last I am sure!

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Good Bye ice for this year

Dave and I decided to make a last visit to Poolburn this morning to see if there was any ice left from last week.  It has been fairly warm and windy but we did find ice plates in the main areas but none strong enough to hold weight.  Dave spent a bit of time swimming among the ice - great to watch but too cold for me.  We decided to finish off by visiting the stream (where we started the season) and I was lucky enough to get the skates on in a couple of places - nice to have a last but limited skate for the season.  Ice was surprisingly good but tricky as I had to be careful to stay on the strong stuff.  Nice finish to the season.


Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Last ice.... the best?

Although I was unable to skate for the last week  I kept an eye on the weather and made a last minute decision to head up to Poolburn very early this morning.  After the snow last week I was hoping for a skate on some snow ice but was pleased to find some fabulous 'crazy pave' ice over most of the main basin.  After a spectacular sunrise I had a great skate including around to the dam.  The good ice was fantastic but had a lot of areas to avoid.  Hard and fast and felt the safest this season.  Well worth the early start and probably the last skate this year as warmer windy weather is due for the next few days.

Monday, July 20, 2020

Close to home

In past I have at times found skateable ice near home so after a few frosts I was up early this morning to check so I could skate with Ella.  Found great ice in a sheltered pond I found a few years ago but never skated. Good ice thickness and covered in interesting frost patterns.  Great to spend some time just enjoying the natural ice and fab company.  Skating with your daughter on natural ice - just the best.  If this is my last skate this year I am happy!

Saturday, July 18, 2020

Super Poolburn Day

Up early the morning to meet Inge and Jane on Poolburn. Enjoyed the dawn on the ice and had great skate with good company.  Most of the main bay and the far bay has good ice but gets variable further out.  Good to see the fog finally lifting in the valleys.

Friday, July 17, 2020

Above the fog...

Drove up through the fog and low cloud this morning to a fine Poolburn day.  Ice was a bit stronger than yesterday - great nearer the shore but variable further out.  Had a fabulous skate nearly down to the far bay.  Met up with Andrew and Keith for a bit of ice talk.  There was enough space for Andrew to do a speed circuit in the main bay - great to watch.   Should be another good skate tomorrow.
Amazing clear ice
Andrew warming up 

Thursday, July 16, 2020

Ice is back

After watching the weather over the last week I decided to check Poolburn to see if there was another skate.  A week ago there was no ice at all but good to see some  back after a few days of frost.  Ice was a bit sketchy in the corner of the main back but had a good but crackly skate.  Went over to the far bay and found better ice and had a great skate.  Not too thick but clear and hard.  Checked out Algae Dam and the stream - both had ice but the dam was unsafe.  Low cloud/fog was rolling in as I left but if it clears it should be better tomorrow.
Chilly at day break

Frost tooth brushes
Bit sketchy in places

Back at the stream

Friday, July 10, 2020

Walk to Hooker

No ice around Otago this week after a lot of rain and wind so decided to walk the Hooker Valley track.  Although not expecting to skate I took the nordic skates in my pack as they don't take much room and clip onto my boots. Started before a freezing dawn and had a fabulous walk and view up to the lake as dawn came.  Surprised and pleased to find a good chunk of snow ice at the outlet end made a bit stronger by the good frost.  Many stones on the ice but put the skates on and had fun skating near the edge on hard bumpy ice - but good with the nordic skates.  Spent a bit of time chatting to some other walkers and just enjoying the environment.  Eventually the sun hit the ice and time to leave as the ice began to go off.
Great place to visit.
The view as I arrived
Dawn walk
A few small bergs

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Snow ice better than no ice....

After a tip of from Inge yesterday about some snow ice on Poolburn and despite the dismal weather forecast,  I decided to check out Poolburn this morning.  Still a bit of snow on the way up and the track starting to break up in the wet. Most of the ice from last Saturday had gone but found a patch of snow ice in the small bay .  Had a good but bumpy skate - more suited to the Nordic skates. Went over the check the far bay and found a big pack of snow ice and had an enjoyable time mostly on the Nordic skates.  Weather deteriorating with spits of rain as I left. Without frost the last ice will go fast.
Checked Idaburn and Coalpit on the way home - mostly water.
Ice mostly gone - water in places.
Snow ice pack in the big bay
On the snow ice in Big Bay

Friday, July 3, 2020

Evening skate....

While heading to Central tonight I thought I would check out the Lower Manorburn.  After  a bit of testing in Rush Cutters I found a good skate able area and spent an enjoyable hour or so skating in the moon light.  A bit of debris had been chucked on the ice but clear of this was smooth.  Fairly thin elsewhere but a few frosts would make a good skate.

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Dusty ice.....

Headed to Poolburn this morning not expecting to find much as the weather has been warm over the last few days.  Was surprised to see some snow still about in the shadows and more ice in the main bay - especially as it was above zero the whole way up.  Ended up having a fantastic skate around to the back of the main island and into some of the bays.  Ice had a strange surface - dry and what looked like fine dust (but wasn't) and smooth to skate on.
Plan B in case of no ice was to go bike riding - but decided to do this as well and rode to a small dam near by and had a skate.  Also rode the bike on the ice as the surface stayed mostly dry and allowed the wheels to grip - a first for me and good fun.
Headed back via another few spots to check for ice.  Great day.
Brooding sunrise

Plenty of hazards
Surface like fine dust