After the near suicidal amounts driving the previous 2 days, Wanaka was a good place to relax.
The weather had cleared the first day we spent in Wanaka and it felt good to be back in a big town. We spent our first day relaxing around the lake and getting absolutely trashed in the evening. Sauna and beer doesn't go well together.
While nursing an acute hangover the next day, we climbed Mt Iron. It's a short drive from the town centre and the trail is well marked. You start with an absurd amount of stairs until the first look out. From then on it's mainly gravel ascents. Beware of sheep shit. There will be sheep shit everywhere.
Try travel light, there is no point lugging around 10kg worth of camera gear as it will only take away more of your shooting time. Filters is a must, mainly to cut down of the atmospheric haze.
The roads outside of Wanaka are all very rewarding. Drive along the road towards the treble cone ski fields and continue onto the gravel road that follows the river. You will need to ford a few streams along that road, but will be well worth the time.
DO NOT FEEL PRESSURED TO DRIVE THE 100KM/H SPEED LIMIT.
You be overtaken quite a few times on this road by local drivers who are more accustomed with the local road conditions. There will be many potholes and fords you will have to cross, often with little signage. There will also occasionally be cows and sheep scattered alongside the road.
We spun out while going around an unexpected turn on the road. We understeered and veered into the ditch before doing a 180 degree slide. It felt like an action movie stunt and was pretty exhilarating until I realised how close we were to smashing into a tree.