Arrowtown is a perfect outdoor environment for a selection of hiking trails and guided walks. There are choices for short walks, long hour walks, or multi-day walks. There are public walking trails you can do on your own, or enlist in guided walking tours. The latter is a bit expensive, so we hiked on our own, we just followed the trail.
We chose the one-hour walk inclusive of the return trip. We are starting at 1:00 pm so we have enough time to linger anywhere and return safely. We chose the Bush Creek Trail, but there are also Arrow River Trail, Big Hill Trail, Sawpit Gully Trail.
I am so fascinated with the clear running water, shooting some small rapids like above and some unfamiliar plants. When there was a lady and her dog who told us that in a few meters the scenes around the path will be turning spectacular. She is an Australian lady, now a resident of the area, who often walks here with her dog. So go we went, way ahead of the marker that supposed to be our trail end. We were excited to see what the lady describes so animatedly, but did not specify what it really is! There are no markers for each particular trail, so we just continue the path.
These are brooms, in Tribe Genisteae, mostly composed of 3 genera one of which is Cytisus scoparius. It is considered invasive in New Zealand, but no doubt it is very beautiful. Can you imagine us under those bushes, feeling like fairies because of the lovely sweet scent permeating in the air? We didn't see anybody nor see any animal, but we can still hear the water movement farther left.
Another fern with slightlyfolded growing tips yet.
view from the top see a portion of the town, the sea and some mountain snowcaps
After one and a half hour we reached the almost summit, a flat portion of the landscape. We call it the summit because we can already see the other side. But the trail said it is a loop down again to Arrowtown. However, after walking a few hundred meters more with already a different drier vegetation, we saw a forked path. We vascillated where to go, so we tried the left path which seems to be endless. The right however looks just like a path of some animals and not normally used by men. We lingered awhile, waiting for some wisdom to arrive. Wisdom or no wisdom, this confusion made us change our plan. Instead of trying further ahead and get lost, we finally decided to return the same way behind us. We at least will see that path twice.
We saw a lady and her daughter a few meters on our way back. We told them our confusion and they said the right path we thought is an animal track, is the way back to Arrowtown. She was sorry there was no label on that forked path that made us return using the former path. She said to discuss it with the association. And we continued trodding back on our already familiar path. It was already easier now as we are going down. If we continued the left uphill path it is already the Big Hill Trail, which entails many hours. It would have been better if the ends of the paths, and the fork paths are well labeled.
We didn't forego the chance of having our pictures taken with my favorite flowers. We were both exhilarated and thrilled.
This landscape now adorn my desktop.
Our target of having a one-hour hike ended up to be more than 3 hours. We returned at past 4:00 pm, just in time for the bus going back to Queenstown. We were so happy for the experiences, and also thankful that we were not lost in looking for the right trail. Our lesson was: when confused which path to take, just turn back via the familiar way. We felt we were also guided. Thanks to the fairies on the way.