Monday, October 27, 2008

Hamner Hot Springs

Hamner Hot Springs cooling pool.

One of the many treats within a ninety minute drive of Christchurch is the Hamner Hot Springs. It is a commercial hot springs so purists might turn their noses up at it and I normally would too. I prefer to hike in to a more natural hot springs setting. However, just coming off the ice it was one of many things that I was willing to partake in. The drive took us northwest of Christchurch through pastures and up windy roads towards Lewis Pass and the Southern Alps, the mountains that are the backdrop for the hot springs. It was sunny, warm, and just about the perfect day for a drive.


Once there, it was just like any other hot springs. Sit. Soak. Enjoy. Smell the sulfur. Move to the cold pool. Drink water. Soak some more. Their hottest pool was 41C (105.8F). The only difference from what I might do back home is that I made a big point to stay in the shade. Three days off the Ice, I was whiter that white. I might have been whiter than Jay Paulonis and Finn combined. (Yeah, I said it. The gauntlet has been thrown.) After a few hours soaking, Lee and I had enough and we scooted back down to Christchurch. I didn't even get a sunburn. A great, mellow day.

A sign from the hot springs. When isn't it cookie time?

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