all over the place
Sept 10 - Oct 10, '04

(click on the first picture to get started; captions are at the bottom of each picture page)

After getting back from Australia, I had a lot of catch-up work to do in the busy central library. Relaxing outside under the cherry blossoms was also crucial.
Time for another geology field trip!  Here the professor tells us what's up (or maybe what's down?) from atop a great big piece of schist. :)  Contrary to popular opinion, I'm not in this picture.  This is because I *took* this picture. It was a gorgeous day and we were tempted to just stay at the beach.
Instead they took us to a big commercial gravel mine to check out sandstones and mudstones (ooh ooh).  But I know *you're* checking out the soooo sexy hard hats.  Ok, so if you were staring at a gray rock face for half an hour, you too would start joking about the hard hats.  The girl with the orange hat is Meagan, who normally goes to Oregon State.  She is my Geo buddy, but apparently she didn't want to look up at the camera.  Or maybe she's just too sexy for her hard-hat. Hehe, I rambled on for such a long time in the last caption that I have nothing left for this one.  But aha!  Admire the sequence of sandstones (beige) up to greensand and mudstone (green-brown).  I know, I know, the hard hats are just too distracting... not to mention the backhoe in the distance.
Our final stop (I have spared you many intermediate mudstones and siltstones) was at a place called Tunnel Beach out on the coast of NZ.  Here we are hiking down to the beach. It's called Tunnel Beach because there is a man-made tunnel you walk through to get to the beach.  The tunnel was not very photogenic, but here is the view from the beach.  Click the picture for a movie version!
Tunnel Beach from above.  Soo cool-looking.  The erosion is very angular - apparently this is called "jointing". One man.  An outpost on the edge of space.
The next week was the Dunedin Fringe Festival.  I saw several good comedy acts, as well as doing tech for an improv show and singing in a few performances.  There were also some cool street performers, as you can see.  I don't know if the policemen are too happy.  But I wish I had a photo of this dude juggling on that unicycle (which he did).  He even did club passing with another dude on the ground. This past weekend (Oct 9-10) I drove to Queenstown again with some friends.  Queenstown looks out over this gorgeous lake.  This photo was taken by Hilary earlier in the morning than I woke up...
Hilary and I told the hostel receptionist that we wanted to do the longest day hike in the area.  She said "yeah, I guess that would be Ben Lomond."  Ok.  "There might be a bit of snow still, I'm not sure."  Ok, whatever - we started off.  The first leg of the trip was taking a gondola ride (basically like a ski lift) up the side of the first hill.  This is the view of Queenstown and the lake from up at the top of the gondola ride. A stereotypical Asian couple took our photo.
And then we started hiking.  It was at about this point that we started wondering where exactly we were hiking to.  We looked around and looked at the map, and realized that we were supposed to go to the top of the mountain directly behind me in this panoramic photo!  I believe at this realization I started laughing.  We were like, well, we'll give it a shot...  ps. this is a 360-degree panorama!  how sweet is that?!
We met some nice German hikers who offered to take our picture in front of The Goal. After hiking further and scrambling across some snowfields, we approached the pass and the Remarkables rose into view - it was incredible.  We stopped for lunch and chatted with the Germans.
Robin surveys the land, and deems it "sweet". The Germans making their way up the mountain with us.  Since we were trying to avoid snow patches, we had to abandon the trail and scramble upwards...
After some doubt and tension, and some guidance from more experienced climbers, we reached the summit!  Here is the awesome 360-degree view from the top!  Queenstown is at the left, followed by the lake, the Remarkables, and a guy from Sweden.  Gotta love random guys from Sweden popping up in your panorama photos...
Robin on top of the world! The next day we figured we'd let the legs rest and do some upper body work instead by going kayaking on the lake.  After returning and chilling in the sun, we drove back to Dunedin for the last week of classes.