Time is running out. Here in New Zealand autumn just began: days shorten and little by little temperatures are going down. As for me, summer was to brief and I really want to enjoy the last sunny days. Saturday was one of those. That was the perfect occasion to go for a ride to Castlepoint, a small town 2 hours and a half away from Wellington on the east coast where we discovered a lovely beach and a lighthouse.
Castlepoint is known to be a very good place to surf and that is not surprising at all. You should see the waves! There is no surf adaptative club and I found the weather not warm enough to start learning how to surf. So we went to the lighthouse after we chilled out on the beach where we almost adopted a dog which really enjoyed playing with us!
We I arrived at the beach I believed that it was wheelchair accessible because I glimpsed a wheelchair ramp. Unfortunately the ramp itself is not accessible anymore as sand and grass invade the pathway. However there is adapted bathroom.
I love to listen at the waves sound and to look at them smash, so I stayed there just a little more longer just to take the time to enjoy it and then we walked to the lighthouse.
To reach it, we walked in a gravel pathway, then in a sidewalk and finally we had to cross an sandy area. Sand is not easy to go trough alone in a wheelchair but on the back wheels with Franck help that was not an issue. Still we had to do a bit more exercise to get to the lighthouse but it worths it. The lighthouse takes centre stage on the top on the reefs. There is no way to get to it alone in a manuel wheelchair as it is too steep. Franck had to push me to climb and hold me back to go down but as it was concrete ground that was quite easy. At the end it is easier to go down into reverse as it is very steep and that is the best way for the person helping to hold back a wheelchair without being afraid to drop it.
If you want to reach the reefs very top and have the best view you will have to go forward the lighthouse but that is not possible in a wheelchair as the only access is by stairs. This said, I already had a good view from where I was. I could admire reefs and discover a lagoon on the other side of the sand area that we crossed. The view was wonderful all around me. I looked at it one last time and we went back down to the lagoon. Some of the sand dunes and rocky hills surrounding the lagoon and leading to the Castlepoint have strange and unusual shapes. One hill seems to have been split in two parts.
Between the lighthouse and the lagoon there is a rocky stretch which appears almost lying on dunes. Its shape and its ground appearance intrigued us so Franck decided to have a closer look at it. As soon as he sees a hill, a volcano or a unusual mount he wants to climb on its summit. He wouldn’t had miss a chance todo so even if this one is not so high.
The rock is made of sediments. We can see clearly all the shells. They are thousands of them and they are still quite sharp. Time didn’t finish its work yet.
One last fish and chips in front of sea enjoying the landscape and we are already back on the road to Wellington. I do not regret the many kilometres we had to do that day. I had a lovely day in the middle of beautiful and natural sceneries and as there is so few people it is perfect to stroll during a day in a peacefully place away from the city.
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