With the heatwave, if you can call it that, we set off for a park beside a beach where we could swim.
Our friends Rob and Helen have stayed regularly and highly recommended Wenderholm Self Contained parks. The park is well setup with a boat ramp (tidal), Electric BBQ’s and Picnic Tables that are free to use and nice new toilets too.
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We arrived in the early afternoon, settled down Rafe and headed straight for the beach. A really nice beach with views across to Whangaparoa and you can even see Rangitoto Island.
I was surprised it was so busy for a Monday but it was hot and it is still holiday time. As the day went on, more motorhomes arrived and while we had a glass of wine before tea, a visitor from Wellington was out entertaining us with his metal detector looking for treasure.
He found a house key, several coins and said he’d previously found an expensive ring!
With the Waikato Buses
Behind the beach picnic areas
People enjoying the Estuary
The Toilet Block
The Boat Ramp
Late arrivals at the ramp
I’m think that I would prefer to park in a fenced off parking area like Sullivans Bay, another Auckland City Park further north. In saying that, where we were and because there were a few of us, it gave the impression that it was a motorhome area and cars didn’t park near us.
We have had a situation where we’ve been at beachs where the day trippers have been quietly drinking all day and leave to drive home where they can barely walk.(Not this one)
All in all, a nice place to stay, nice beach and things to cook on too.
Mark came back from a Turners Auction about 8 or so months ago and surprised us all when he arrived with a 1995 CI Travelhome on a Ford Trader chassis.
Mark & Tina are old boating mates and knowing that he has his hands full with a car restoration, a bike restoration and still has his boat to look after as well, I wondered where he would get the time from to work on what was a do up !
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The galley area
The sleeping accommodation. Completely relined and insulated as it leaked and was rotten.
Mark & Tina with their new Motorhome
Above the Califont the vent was leaking. Vent no longer leaks.
The Galley area
Wee fridge.. a little beauty
The Bathroom and Toilet
My first observation when I first saw it was rot, dampness and a whole lot of work but what a transformation when I saw it just recently.
All the leaks are fixed, the rot has been removed, leaky hatches have been replaced and all the sleeping accommodation has been completely relined. It looks fantastic.
The weekend we spent with Mark & Tina at Rays Rest was great and for their very first trip away, everything worked well.
Mechanically, it just plods away with the 3.5 l normally aspirated Ford Diesel and Mark tells me it flew through its first COF.
What a great weekend! The weather was great and we had things to do.
After Fiona had finished work, we headed out to one of our favorite spots, the NZMCA park at Ardmore, a hop skip and a jump from Alex, Sarah and the Grandkids.
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Our friends, Rob & Helen and their daughter Chloe were heading off for a week or so to Napier and Gisborne so it was great we could pop in to Ardmore to see them off. When we arrived at about 7:30pm, they were off on a walk so they were a bit surprised to see us there when they returned as we hadn’t confirmed that we would be there.
Alex, Sarah and the boys came over after their tea and we all caught up in Rafe. Lots of fun.
The Ardmore NZMCA park is in an airfield precinct so a little noise comes with the territory, usually small planes and sometimes Helicopters.
That morning, things were different. At 8am, we heard the repetitive bark of a Sergeant Major type next door in the cadet parade ground teaching St John Juniors how to march. It was quite interesting to watch too as some didn’t know the left from the right so there were some interesting moves happening.
They were all togged up in their black uniforms and looked good, some even wearing their medals. There was one trainer who forgot his black clobber and was doing it all in his Red shorts.
As Fiona said, good on him for volunteering his time on a Saturday morning but it did sort of spoil the overall look.
About 9:30, we said goodbye to Rob, Helen and Chloe and they headed off to Taupo for their trip to Hawkes Bay and beyond. We left as well and went around to Alex, Sarahs and the Grandkids for the morning and around lunchtime, headed towards one of our other favorite places, Rays Rest at Miranda. We were catching up our friends Gary and Chris who were helping other friends Mark and Tina with their first trip out in their new, second hand Motorhome.
Rays Rest is a great spot and the weather was behaving as well.
After arriving early in the afternoon, we caught up for cups of tea and later a couple of drinks and then headed off in Gary’s van down to get the fish and chips for tea from the famous Kaiaua fish and chips shop. Gary wasn’t drinking so that worked well. It was nice to see how much progress Mark had made on his motorhome as when he got it, it leaked and had quite a lot of dampness in its linings. .. now all gone. More on this in another post soon.
We had a great night together and called it quits and hit the hay.
The next morning was nice in diffused sunshine with little wind. We sat on the foreshore watching people fish and just soaked up the atmosphere.
Gary, Chris, Tina and Mark were going to carry on to Thames and Coromandel so after lunch, we left them and headed home. A nice weekend.
This is the tale of our mini adventure to the Outer Hebrides in our 6m coach built motorhome. I hope you find the story of the people we met and the places we've seen interesting and useful if you're planning your own trip.