Luge i te tihi o te ao – Luge at the top of the world

On Monday, we had a pretty slow start with a leisurely breakfast at the hotel and then watched an English reality show where the aim was to pit interior decorators (that can only buy one item to turn around a terribly decorated house) against each other.

It was a bit cooler this morning and the lake was a bit mistier than the day before.

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When we eventually found some motivation, we caught the water taxi into town.  This time, we got to sit at the back where you can actually see.  Davey was pretty excited, a little bit like a puppy who is allowed to stick its head out of a car window.

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It was a really lovely day and Davey thought that we might go fishing, but we realised that we would be able to get about 30 luge rides each for the cost of a fishing charter boat so we decided to head up to the Skyline instead.

We rode the Gondola up through a cutting in the forest, exposing imposing 100m trees, which have a bit of a prehistoric feel to them, like dinosaurs (or moas) might wander out at any time.

At our destination, it was even colder still.  In some areas of shade, there was still frost!

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First on the agenda at the top was to try out the luge (Davey is a luge veteran, but this was my first time).  The lockers were broken, so the first time, I went up by myself, while Davey minded the bags.  In order to get to the start of the luge, you have to go up on a chair lift, which it a little quicker than I was expecting, especially at the points where you get on and off.  I got a quick induction by the lovely pierced luge attendant and I was on my way!  The Scenic Track was lots of fun and not too challenging, with, as indicated by the name, some gorgeous scenery.  Unfortunately, I was a little bit distracted by how numb my glove-less hands were getting to enjoy the experience to its fullest.

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Davey went next so I took some photos of him on the chair lift (where he was swinging his legs with excited anticipation) and while tailgating the slower driver in front of him.

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For my second round, Davey came up with me.  Here’s some evidence (and the amazing views):

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The advanced track was even more exhilarating, with the ability to get “air” with your luge!

After this run, it was approaching 2pm, so definitely time for lunch.  (The position of the winter sun is quite deceiving.  It always looks like it’s early morning so you can’t tell when it’s lunchtime, especially when you’ve gotten used to eating leisurely hotel buffets mid morning.)

For lunch, we had a pleasantly surprisingly good curry with naan bread that was cooked to order in a brick oven at the buffet.

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I sat in the cafe and contemplated the view (and judged the girl next to me who was seemingly so unimpressed with the view that she had to watch videos on her iPad) while Davey took another 5 runs on the luge.

 

The Skyline appears to be sponsored by a jelly bean company and there was lots of jelly bean art (that is, art made of actual jelly beans), like this one of Frodo and the one ring:

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We caught the water taxi back to the Hilton and attempted to get some more relaxing in to our leisurely day by sitting in the hot tub.  Unfortunately, we didn’t get quite as much relaxation as we had hoped after being interrupted by an inadequately-supervised boy who insisted on interrogating us about my family history and then splashing us when he didn’t get the answers he wanted.  It was okay in the end, Davey sorted him out by threatening to tell on him to his mother, much to the approval of the other adults in the vicinity.

After our soak, we had some dinner at the on-site pub.  As always, when you order seafood, even when it’s just plain ole pub fish and chips, you get an amazing piece of fresh fish.  And it wasn’t just the mulled cider influencing my appreciation – it was good!

After a couple more mulled ciders by the fire in the pub, it was time to go back to the fire in our own room for a nice warm sleep (and for Davey to dream of being a luging champion).

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