Jul 16, 2014

We are all in this business for a reason, and that’s because we love adventure, the outdoors and doing stuff that challenges us. Keeping life interesting is important and I always love to hear what our team are up to over the quieter months (quieter months?) as it is usually something pretty fun. From Anne reliving her travelling days in her youth by heading to Vietnam, to John running his own horse trekking in Mongolia it will no doubt leave you hankering for more adventure...

Guide John, well in John's own words he is doing his ‘usual’. Which is escaping the New Zealand winter by heading off to Mongolia for two months. He’s taking clients hiking and horse trekking with his company Zavkhan Trekking through the rugged Mongolian countryside. As if thats not exciting enough next stop is Tajikistan en route to Afghanistan with a group of 7 clients, you wont catch me on that trip but at the same time I am incredibly curious.


John and Sam in the Wakhan (Afghanistan)


Then off to the UK for a bit of family time with Sam, Johns lovely, tolerant and understanding partner, who is heading over from New Zealand for a wedding. Next stop for the two of them is Portland, Oregon, to visit family.

Never one to sit still for too long John then heads to Vancouver Island for a spot of sea kayaking and getting among the wildlife. He’s hoping to get close (ish) to Grizzlies and Orca (ahh not too close John we need you back next season please).


Glenys, our Sales & Office Manager, it’s a big year for Glenys she’s just got married this winter so has taken the opportunity to take some time off (three months) to enjoy some special time with family and friends as they gather to help her celebrate her special day. We have been teasing her that she needs the three months leave to prepare for the big day but Glenys assures us her pre-wedding beauty regime will only consist of washing her hair! 

After the big wedding day she is off to a secret honeymoon destination then touring the South Island throwing in a bit of skiing here and there. After exploring the South Island it is off to Rarotonga (without new husband though) for a friend’s 50th for some relaxation before the real adventure begins. Husbands back and Stewart Island here they come, ten days of hiking in the stunning scenery, some mountain biking around Mavora Lakes, West Coast and Queenstown.   

Finally it is off to Central Otago for a few days staying in a Backcountry Hut before we barricade her back into the office.


Glenys and Andrew on one of their escapades


Anne has just returned from two weeks in Vietnam. She not only managed to be unshackled from her desk she also got the 'leave pass' from her family and made the sojourn a girls trip.  Judging by the photos she had a fantastic time; from throwing herself into the incredibly mad moped infested streets of Ho Chi Minh city, cruising around in style (you can't see the perspiration in the photos) by bike in Hoi An and lazing on the decks of a junk as they sailed from Cat Ba to the UNESCO world heritage site of Halong Bay.



Anne and her friend Helen partaking in the local refreshments

Hopefully the break has done her well as we have firmly reattached the shackles to her desk. Daniel and the kids are pleased to see her return although they managed perfectly well - only one broken bone between them.





Dan has recently returned from Guiding a customised family trip. He took a great family from Florida

The Wiggins having a slightly different beach experience than their home beaches of Florida!

through the South Island. Daniel came back truly impressed that this great family chose to come to New Zealand in the middle of winter and hike into the backcountry. Dan's plans for crosscountry skiing holiday on the Pisa Range with the wife (Anne) and kids is fast going out the window due to the displaced collar bone his nine-year old son is now sporting (rugby injury).  Not that you can get a nine year old boy to take it easy and slow down anyway, but I guess X-rays don't lie? Might be able to squeeze in a winter tramp somewhere during school holidays. 


Malcolm has recently spent a week helping take a film crew into the backcountry to produce a wonderful little New Zealand TV show called First Crossings. It was perfect for Malcolm as it was a blend of politics and wilderness. They retraced some of the journeys of Te Kootie, who was 19th century Maori leader and fighter who gave the colonial government a good run around. Fortunately Malcolm didn’t lose Jamie and Kevin, the famous presenters, of the show.


Eva, our intern from Germany, is thoroughly enjoying her time here in New Zealand and settled well and truly in at the Murphy Station (she lives with the bosses!) When she’s not roped in to join Murphy family adventures, general hobby farm chores and babysitting; Eva hopes to get out in New Zealand’s backcountry to really get a feel for living here. Her most recent escapade (without the Murphy whanau) was a hike into Welcome Flat, West Coast, South Island where she marveled at our astounding scenery while soaking in natural hot pools. Next up for Eva is a skiing trip with friends from Auckland.


Eva mastering the swing bridge on her way to Welcome Flat Hut


As for me, Michelle, a weekend away with the girls to run and mountain bike the Queen CharlotteTrack is next. This is in preparation for an all girls adventure race that I am doing later in the year. Will be fun, it seems every man (well lady) and her dog is doing it as the location is handy to us – Hokitika, South Island.

Wahoo, cant beat the single track!


And last and most definitely not least is Ali, in the interests of being underwater as much as possible, Ali doesn’t let a little cold water prevent her from scuba diving over winter. While many head to the tropical Pacific Islands to avoid the winter chill, she will be decked out in a drysuit enjoying long soaks with her underwater camera. The water can be a bit green and murky in winter, so she just switches to her macro lens and goes searching for small critters to photograph. There is a lot of interesting activity to observe in winter: triplefins are spawning, anemones are spawning and many species are revelling in the increased nutrient load that comes from winter rainfall pouring off the land into the ocean. It’s a time of frenetic underwater activity; no self-respecting mad-keen scuba diver can afford to be seen hibernating in winter in New Zealand!

Ali in front of the camera for once

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