The Pinnacle Geek Out
I had a rather busy spring this year with a couple of visitors. My cousin and her fiance hail from Chicago, IL and we went on a fair few adventures. My favorite was a short hike not too far from Wellington, known as the Putangirua Pinnacles. My LOTR friends might know it as the entrance to the Path of the Dead off of Dimholt Road. It was about a two hour drive from Wellington, just past Martinborough. You knew we were close when the view opened up from fields and hills onto a stunning ocean vista.
We went on a brilliantly beautiful day! The information I had about the walk meant we were expecting a rather long hike, but turns out there is a shorter half hour trip along the riverbed along the bottom of the road that we took instead. This way we could take our time and enjoy a long picnic.
The path is rather flat, but there were a few times we were stuck on the wrong side of the river. I didn’t have to hesitate before taking my shoes off and waded a cross. Some people risked a little more by hopping across, but I didn’t regret my decision.
After a little more walking, we saw the namesake rocks for which the area was known. They were just scattered at first, but the whole place had these thinly stacked rocks.
We continued along til we were in the heart of Dimholt Road before we stopped and had a picnic. We had some brie, cracked open some Sobering Thought brew and nibbled on some po-ta-toes. All in all, it was a pleasant walk and a nerdy LOTR fan moment all rolled into one.
On the way back from the pinnacles, we stopped for wine in Martinborough which is always a fun time! In the heart of Wairarapa, there are heaps of vineyards and wineries touting some great Pinot Noirs and some Rieslings that I love, too.
While I’ve only made it to the pinnacles once, I’ve actually had many a dealings with the wine region because, why not?
There is an olive grove where you can sample some yummy olive oil (Olivo) and there is a chocolate place I like to stop at to sample the goods as well (Schoc). Not far from the city, it makes for a nice weekend.
On the way back, you can stop at Rivendell in the heart of Kaitoke Regional Park.
Or, if you really want to geek out, you can stop at the River Anduin (Hutt River) or the Isengard Gardens (Harcourt Park). Not necessarily the most photogenic, but I’ll give it a pass.
One highlight is that we finally found the “spot”, THE spot that the Hobbits hid from the ring wraiths in the first LOTR film. On Mount Victoria, we once hunting this site, but were unsuccessful. Comparing the real trees in the background of the shot, we got it!