THE SUMMIT ROAD.
(Written;by.a Visitor.) Clome away from the town with its narrow streets and crowding houses, where we feel cramped and hot and weary. Come out to the great spaces; up among the hill tops. Leave all the cares and worries behind for once, and revel in the open freedom up above us. Come up to the Summit road, and see what a beautiful world it really is that surrounds us. Some on horseback and some driving, we slowly ascend Okain's road from Robinson's Bay» often stopping and turning to look over the harbour, to note the blue water of its many bays coming gradually into clearer view, and to pick put the various homesteads scattered throughout the valley beneath us. The sun is bright and warm, the sou'-weßt wind is fresh and invigorating, and altogether we feel that life is good. How delightful are'the varied tints of green and bronze spread over the spurs and slopes of the hills. There are fields with red, black, and white cattle and sheep, interspersed with broad fields of tall cocksfoot grass that become veritable seas of green ripp!e3 as the wind passes over them, and up near the hill tops are bronze patches where the bracken holds sway. Water trickles by the road beside us and here sweet koromiko tempts us, and we gather it with yellow monkey musk and ferns to deck ourselves and our horses. There patches of soft everlasting daisies look like white fleeces hanging over the clay faces and rocks Across intervening ridges we can now see Akaroa cosily clustering at the edge of its blue bay. The road curves up round shoulder after shoulder, and we find fresh beauty round every bend; till, at last, we reach the saddle, and 'look down into Okain's Bay. We stand a while to gaze into tbe quiet valley beneath us, and the wide ocean beyond. From here, on clear days, the Eaikourascan be seen away to the north. How beautiful, bow wide, and free it all is, and how uplifted we, too, feel when drinking it all in ! Passing round a rocky knob—that someone has surmounted with a tiny fluttering flag—we follow the road to Le Bon's Bay. Here we find some heavy bush still clothing tbe gullies round the Summit. But, ah! after all there is no pleasure without some little pain. Here also, stark in the white sunshine lie acres and acres cf the skeletons of once beautiful big trees—trees cut down, not for man's use, but simply to be got rid of. I did not mean to speak of it—l meant this to be just a free glad outing up above all the cares of our daily life, —but who can see the passing of our-: beautiful bush, and with it the birds, without feeling sad ?
Wei', here is Le Bon's Bay a- cv feet, end bare is a water trough provided for travelling stock. Gome let's boil tbe billy (witb the help of a little of that melanchol> decaying wood) and satisfy tbe clamouring of our appetites. Never doe? tea taste so good as that we drink oul in the open, and the same remark ap plies to sandwiches, cakes and rasp berries and cream eaten while we sit among the warm sweet-smelling clover and grass by the roadside. At lb> same time we feast our souls on the fair scene spread around us. , The horses, too, enjoy their lunch of clover and cool grass. Listen! was that thunder? It may be. Huge masses of white fleecy clouds are piling themselves up over tbe bill behind us, £0 we will move on. It's time too; we have already been three hours on the road. We have lingered by the way to absorb all the pleasure we could. On again, down b'U now, with the wind in our faces till we pass round to the west of the hill, and are looking down into German Bay, and acros? the harbour to Duvauchelle, Barry's Bay, French Farm, Tikao and Wainui. Another slight up hill grade and pre sently we come to where the road branches down to Long Bay, a lonely looking little bay facing Eoutb cast to the ocean. After a short pause here, we take the road towards / karoa, and go swinging down tbe long down hill slope with a clattering of wheels and a seething of tbe brake. Now Akaroa come 3 into view once more—almost at our feet this time. Another pause, then "Goodbye Akaroa" and on, with our faces towards home, through German Bay to Kobinson's Bay. We cast regretful glances up to tbe hills, but we will long cherish the memory of the day we have spent so happily, and we feel all the better and purer for our outing round the Summit Boad.
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THE SUMMIT ROAD., Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXII, Issue 4366, 23 January 1914
THE SUMMIT ROAD. Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXII, Issue 4366, 23 January 1914
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