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.