Friday 19 March and we’re headed south out of Blenheim. We were aiming for Marfells Beach, on the coast (obvious I suppose) just south of Lake Grassmere. Lake Grassmere is the place where they make salt in the ponds of many colours. As we passed Seddon we had a discussion about how we only just had ¼ of a tank of fuel and perhaps we might be below the diesel heater outflow and mightn’t have any heating if it got cold. Wyn had spotted some sort of EFTPOS fuel place in Seddon so we decided to turn back. Which isn’t that easy when towing a car on an A-frame.
Just south of Seddon there was a holdup on the road for an accident. There was a car on its roof on the road and firemen and police sorting it all out – the ambulance had been and gone. There were stop-go people and as we got through Wyn decided that a side road looked like a good prospect for turning around so we turned off. We found a spot to unhitch the car and turn around and were soon back out on the main road (SH1). Then it was back through the accident scene to Seddon and enough fuel to make sure we’d have heating. By our third drive past the accident scene we were wondering what they’d be thinking we were doing. Back down the side road we rehitched the car and slunk back onto the main road and continued south. The road was sealed from SH1 to Marfells Beach and it wasn’t far.
The beach is perched between the sea and soft-rock hills and cliffs. There is a DoC camp along much of the beach and it’s a great little camp. There are a few Norfolk pines and some stunted trees/bushes that give a bit of shelter. There are lots of flat parking spots right beside the beach. And lovely new flash flush toilets. There are good views up the coast and across Cook Strait to the hills around Wellington. It’s a lovely location with the only noise that of the waves a few metres away – a good place to relax.
The diary for Saturday says it all: “Read book ….explore beach … lunch in sun … read book … snooze …. tea … Grand Design and James Bond (on TV)”.