|Our campsite was in a lovely spot (shame about the kids on their mini motor bikes !) and in morning we set off into the Rimutaka Regional Park on a lovely footpath but after 20 mins came across ‘Bridge Closed’ so retraced our steps and tried another which turned out to be steep, narrow and with a vertical drop – scary. Drove on in search of Rivendell and found it in Kaitoke Regional Park on the way to Upper Hutt; this is a really nice campsite (which we would recommend to anyone visiting) with several well marked footpaths through the rain forest (we walked them all; some claimed to be wheelchair access but even though the Kiwis pride themselves on being hardy types, I would certainly have baulked at pushing Peter Farnfield up some of them with hairpin bends and gravel underfoot !) and a river running through it with a suspension bridge – Janet got brave again ! In case you are wondering, Rivendell NZ bears no resemblance that I could see with Rivendell Middle Earth, except for the people wearing pointy ears, cloaks and carrying longbows.
A curiosity at the park - saddleback cows ! Thought they were hairy pigs at first -but look for yourself !
Decided to skip Helm’s Deep this time and after braving Countdown drove on to Lower Hutt campsite, which has nothing to recommend it except its proximity to the Interislander ferry terminal.