We also put gravel on the lower section of the walking track down Summit Road to the bus shelter on Okareka Loop Road. A huge vote of thanks to Guy Gaddum, who carted the gravel to the site, and then hired and drove the roller. Thanks also to “Red” McHale and his team of PD workers, whose muscle power helped to wheelbarrow and spread the gravel on the track surface. A big thank you to the team at Rotorua Quarries for the donation of the track gravel. Also a big thank you to Brian Law, one of our Landcare Okareka volunteers, for all of his work on the timber construction and to Mike Goodwin for getting the whole project organised.
The upper section of the track has had some work done on it – once again big thanks to Guy Gaddum for hiring and then driving the digger to level out the material and form a good surface. There is still more work to be done with more gravel to come and be spread, but we hope to get this completed soon.
We received a big surprise on the day of the Working Bee that the gravel was spread, when Maddie and Hunter Potter arrived to present Landcare Okareka with some of their very well earned money. Maddie and Hunter had a school project to carry out which involved them in fund raising and donating some of the money they made to a community group. Landcare Okareka would like to thank Maddie and Hunter for their very public spirited donation. And then they, along with some of their friends and their dad Ian Potter, stayed to help put in plants along the edge of the newly gravelled track. Great work guys! We will use your money to buy some trees for next winter and hopefully you will be able to come and help plant them.
Lake Okareka Walkway has stood up reasonably well to the wet winter and spring. The new piece of raised track did help to keep people's feet dry. However, there have been some wash outs along the track and RDC have agreed to be fix the worst of these before Christmas. We are very concerned about the erosion of the lake banks when the water level is high but currently we are hoping that the tap on the outlet gets turned down soon or there will not be water left in the lake for people to get boats out of boat sheds! Mind you the wetland dabbling birds are having great fun in the muddy edges.
The most recent Working Bee towards the end of November was also well supported and made use once again of Dennis Falconer's barge – many thanks to Dennis. The barge was used to carry another donated picnic table to Silver beach – thank you to Chris & Helen Russell for the donation. We hope that those who frequent Silver beach appreciate the tables that are down there now – water skiers and walkers alike!
It is almost that time of year again. I think the best Christmas present Landcare Okareka could have would be some rain – and soon - for our new plantings. We wish everyone a really happy Christmas and we look forward to a bright and happy 2013.
Enjoy the holidays out and about this beautiful place – and stay safe.
Sandra Goodwin, on behalf of the Landcare Okareka volunteer team.