Saturday, December 31, 2011

Ryde Falls, Mt Oxford

Ever since our arrival in NZ 16 years ago, we didn't have money to go on expensive holidays. In between tenants, Leah's teaching colleague sometimes lent us her Oxford cottage, so we got away from 2010-2011 quakes for short times.


28.12.11. Birds nest in verandah lamp, Oxford cottage


28.12.11. Summer daisies, grass, clover, Oxford paddock

October last, we'd tried to walk to Ryde Falls from Coopers Creek, about 6 kms one way, but turned back after a couple of hours. Spring rains had muddied tracks & we became tired of sludging through mud.


28.12.11. Rustic bus stop, between Coopers Creek & View Hill

Wed 28.12.11. Five days post 23.12.11 quake swarm, which had hit Christchurch just before Xmas, we were back at Oxford. We succeed in reaching Ryde Falls that attempt. Walk time: 4 hours return.


28.12.11. Paddock & Torlesse Range, seen from View Hill road

From Oxford I drove to View Hill car park:

Caution: The dirt road to View Hill car park degraded the closer we got to Mt Oxford. We drove over a couple of fords, the first ford was OK, concrete lined. The second ford, I waded first & found one side was deep, the other side OK to drive across in our Toyota Corolla.

The farm road narrowed & became deeply rutted the closer to View Hill car park we went. In places, there were steep drops on one side of the farm road.

I drove through 4 farm gates en route, tedious for gate-opener & closer, Leah.

View Hill car park: Westward views to snowless Torlesse Range & eastward views across Canterbury Plains to Port Hills & Banks Peninsula peaks. We scrutinized the DOC track map board at the car park. We found tracks to Ryde Falls were well marked by DOC signs & recommended walking times fitted our walking pace.


28.12.11. DOC Wharfdale Track sign & map board, View Hill car park


28.12.11. Wharfdale Track, Mt Oxford view of Torlesse Range

From View Hill car park we wandered along Wharfdale Track, through beech forest, gently rising up Mt Oxford. Soon we came upon a stile & a DOC sign stating:

OXFORD FOREST
CONSERVATION AREA


28.12.11. DOC sign, Wharfdale Track, Mt Oxford


Further on in beech forest, at track junctions, we came upon more DOC sign boards, showing tracks & walking times: Link Track; Coopers Creek; Ryde Falls; Wharfdale Track; Wharfdale Hut; Mt Oxford Summit; Korimako Track; Townshend Track...


28.12.11. DOC sign, Wharfdale Track, Mt Oxford


We wandered beech forest along Korimako Track to Ryde Falls. Along the way we saw beeches; rimu; matai; mingimingi; creamy white, flowering kanukas; broadleafs; wineberries... Trackside, we had to watch out for prickly bush lawyers & tree nettle sprouts. Many shrubs & trees had green berries ripening...


28.12.11. Kanuka flowers, Wharfdale Track, Mt Oxford

The tracks were muddy in places, but less than a couple of months before. We prodded mud holes with our walking sticks, mud usually about 10 cm deep & crossed carefully. We saw fallen trees in undergrowth, with vertical root pans clogged with stones & soil, a mixing of mountain soils. Tracks were well maintained, fallen trees chopped up & logs placed as erosion stoppers.


28.12.11. Beech forest ferns, Korimako Track, Mt Oxford


28.12.11. Korimako Track / Ryde Falls Track junction, beech forest, Mt Oxford


28.12.11. Beech forest, Ryde Falls Track, Mt Oxford


28.12.11. Broadleaf tree sign, Ryde Falls Track, Mt Oxford

A feature of our walk to Ryde Falls was understorey fern growth: spring fronds were lighter green, above older, darker green, fern leaves, masses & masses of understorey ferns...


28.12.11. Duckboard bridge & fern undergrowth in beech forest, Ryde Falls Track, Mt Oxford

At another track junction, we forked off from Korimako Track to Ryde Falls Track. Through beech forest, we wandered across several duck board bridges, crossing streams. Some streams we just rock-hopped across.


28.12.11. Fallen tree across Ryde Falls Track, Mt Oxford


Descending a beech gully to Ryde Falls, we became sand fly bait. We were told in Oxford that sand flies were pesky that season. Leah wore longs & slathered her arms in sand fly repellant. My bare legs were just chomped.


28.12.11. Beech forest stream below Ryde Falls, Mt Oxford



28.12.11. Wineberry tree sign, Ryde Falls, Mt Oxford


28.12.11. Ryde Falls, Mt Oxford


We met more wanderers at Ryde Falls. A family climbed the slippery track, through undergrowth, going up Ryde Falls. Leah & I climbed half way up, then turned back, as my jandals were unsuitable for climbing. Too dangerous for my liking. Over the last year, we'd had enough dangers in quaking Christchurch to last us a life time. From bottom pools, we took pics of Ryde Falls.


28.12.11. Ryde Falls, Mt Oxford


Riverside, a man & his wife walked their 3 Swiss, Saanen goats. The buck & does were white. Both genders had horns. The 7 year old buck had magnificent, curled horns. Leah said the goatee bearded man was a goat, as she doubted DOC would approve of goat walking & goats chomping beech forest vegetation.


28.12.11. Saanen goats, Ryde Falls, Mt Oxford


On our return walk, back to View Hill car park, we were pleased to get away from pesky sand flies. As it was holiday time, several afternoon walkers passed us to & from Ryde Falls. Other walks I'd done on Mt Oxford, during school term times, I'd had Mt Oxford tracks to myself.


28.12.11. Wharfdale Track, beech forest view of Torlesse Range


28.12.11. View Hill view of Torlesse Range, start of Wharfdale Track


From View Hill car park, on the farm road back to Oxford, we came upon a car driven off the rutted road by a SUV. Not enough road space for 2 vehicles to pass abreast. The SUV was busy towing the car backwards from the lip of a slope.

Thereafter we drove behind the car, a girl passenger opened the 4 farm gates, Leah closed. Easier for Leah.

Content & pics Copyright Mark JS Esslemont.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Psychological Eh John? Parklands East Damages, 23.12.11 Quake Swarm

The Press 24.12.11, PM John Key: "What we can conclude is that the most significant damage from the earthquakes is really the psychological damage and the impact on the confidence of the people of Christchurch." That bullshit was reported a day after another Parklands liquefaction disaster, 23.12.11.

Maybe you're a mind reader Key. But I doubted you had any idea what was in my mind, nor my wife's mind, nor the minds of my sons & what caused our behaviours & impacted our confidence.

I doubted you knew what went on in the minds of other quake survivors too Key. The 1 000s of quakes we'd endured over the last 15 months Key were not psychological. The joltings, shakings, rumblings, liquefactions, damages were real Key. As real as wind blown, liquefaction grit in my hair & beard & the dirt on my bare feet, after I wandered ravaged riverside & swamp quakescapes Key.

Put on your jandals Key. Take a walk in Parklands. Feel the mud ooze through your toes. Smell shit in muddy streets, knee high in mud. Smell roses too if you dare. They're in shitty streets too. Look at citizens once more digging mud away from homes & tell them that's psychological. Physical insults over many months Key, but don't insult our intelligence with psychological crap.

Post June 13 quake, I wandered Parklands a bit & it was obvious many houses were built on beach sand. Despite post quake clean up, liquefaction remnants at Parklands post June 13 quake were brown & sandy, unlike the grey silt of CBD liquefaction. My wander then through Parklands convinced me never to buy property at Parklands.

Again, I wanted to see what had happened to Parklands, but soon post 23.12.11 quake swarm, before sanitized liquefaction damages, enabled authorities to spin, "What damage? It's just psychological damage."

Boxing Day, 26.12.11. Early morn I drove east along Queen Elizabeth 11 Dr. Further on, 10 kms from my Burnside home, along Travis Dr by Travis Wetland, I descended into swampland, liquefaction land through to the coast.

Parklands was close to the coast. I drove along once more liquefactioned Bower Ave past weedy EQC porta-cabin offices at QE11 Park entrance. I stopped to snap quake sink holes, roadside liquefaction flooding, liquefaction mud heaps & cracked mud on pavements.

Post June 13 quake, when I'd seen QE11 Park, the park & surrounding roads were a mass of sink holes & liquefaction mud.

I looked at 23.12.11 quake swarm, liquefaction damage, corner Bower Ave / Flemington Ave.

Images, quake damaged Bower Ave:


26.12.11. Bower Ave liquefaction damage, 23.12.11 quake swarm, nr Flemington Ave cnr


26.12.11. Flemington Ave liquefaction damage, 23.12.11 quake swarm

Due to heavy 23.12.11 liquefaction damage, Bower Ave traffic was detoured via Pinewood Ave & Beach Rd back to Bower Ave. Psychological eh John?


26.12.11. Bower Ave detour by Pinewood Ave, due to 23.12.11 quake swarm, liquefaction damage


26.12.11. Bower Ave liquefaction damage & sink hole, nr Beach Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm






Many quake cracks & sink holes I saw in Parklands that morn were 1-2 metres deep, grave size, or bigger. Many liquefaction heaps were higher than cars. Psychological eh John?


26.12.11. Bower Ave flooding & liquefaction damage, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Bower Ave sink hole & liquefaction damage, 23.12.11 quake swarm





The Dec 23 quake liquefaction looked as bad as the June 13 quake liquefaction I'd seen. I parked my car, corner Bower Ave / Queenspark Dr, by Waimari Beach Golf Club, liquefactioned gate & muddy golf course. Relatives who lived on Queenspark Dr told us the Dec 23 quake swarm had violently shaken their house & threw items around in their home. Psychological eh John?


26.12.11. Liquefactioned car park entrance, Waimairi Beach Golf Club, Bower Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Bower Ave liquefaction damage, nr Queenspark Dr cnr, 23.12.11 quake swarm


I wanted to wander a figure 8 route along liquefactioned Parklands roads. I wandered Bower Ave towards Bottle Lake Forest Park. Along the way, I snapped mud heaps, quake sink holes, quake cracked road & pavements. Uncleared liquefaction mud was knee high in places. Farm Ln was mud. Rue De La Mare was Rue De La Merde. Psychological eh John?


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Bower Ave / Farm Ln, 23.12.11 quake swarm



26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Bower Ave / Rue De La Mare, 23.12.11 quake swarm



26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Bower Ave, nr Rue De La Mare, 23.12.11 quake swarm


There were early morn joggers, walkers & a few early mud shovellers & barrow bods. No sign of vaunted, Student Volunteer Army diggers, nor Farmy Army volunteer diggers, as in other quakes. Too early for mechanical diggers to work. Maybe not on Boxing Day? A couple of sucker trucks rumbled by, slurping shekels, again. A water tanker drove past, laying liquefaction dust. Crofts Ln was brown mud. Psychological eh John?


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Bower Ave / Crofts Ln, 23.12.11 quake swarm



26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Forest Park Estate, Bower Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm






Forest Park Estate housing I wandered past that morn was deeply liquefactioned on Bower Ave. At one section only half the road was mud cleared, the other side lumpy, with flattened mud. Pavements were covered in drying mud, driveways covered in mud, some cleared, some still being cleared. Roads off Bower Ave were deeply liquefactioned too. Psychological eh John?


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Forest Park Estate, Bower Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm















Near the end of Bower Ave I chatted to a tall, grey-haired man, who'd dug mud away from his garden, driveway & verge on Xmas Day. His garden was immaculate. Muddy desolation all around, knee-high mud on the road. He inquired about where I lived & why I was snapping pics?

I said, "My wife's Scottish cousin, in Nairn, told us there was no news about the Dec 23 quake swarm in UK. Because there were no deaths, there was no international news. I'm taking blog pics to show her what's really happening. Despite mud, gardens are beautiful, filled with flowers."

He pointed to his neighbour's rose garden. In the road was a muddy sink hole, filled with water & scum. "Best of luck to you," I wished & wandered on. Psychological eh John?



26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Forest Park Estate, nr Broadhaven Reserve & Bottle Lake Forest Park, Bower Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm


Broadhaven Ave, near Broadhaven Reserve, was just as bad, liquefaction mud, partly cleared, quake sink holes & some people digging mud. Roads off Broadhaven Ave were deeply liquefactioned too, but mud lessened the further I wandered westwards, away from the coast. Psychological eh John?

Images, quake damaged Broadhaven Ave:


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Bower Ave / Broadhaven Ave, nr Broadhaven Reserve, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Broadhaven Ave, seen from Bower Ave junction, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage & plastic sewage tank, Broadhaven Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Sink hole & liquefaction damage, Broadhaven Ave, looking towards Bower Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Broadhaven Ave by Broadhaven Reserve, 23.12.11 quake swarm







A lost contractor driving a SUV asked for directions to QE11 Park. As he was way out, I hopped into his SUV & put him in the right direction at liquefactioned corner Broadhaven Ave / Inwoods Rd. I thought if a CERA contractor couldn't find his way to massively liquefactioned & sink holed QE11 Park, his contractor damages would've been psychological eh John?

Images, quake damaged Inwoods Rd:


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Broadhaven Ave, nr Inwoods Rd junction, 23.12.11 quake swarm



Inwoods Rd, roughly parallel to Bower Ave, with many liquefactioned roads in between, was relatively un-muddy, like Arosa Pl & Bottle Lake Dr, which I'd muddily trudged post June 13 quake.


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Broadhaven Ave / Inwoods Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm



26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Inwoods Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm




26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Inwoods Rd / Arosa Pl, 23.12.11 quake swarm




Images, quake damaged Queenspark Dr:

26.12.11. Plastic sewage tank, cnr Inwoods Rd / Queenspark Dr, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Serial quake shaken, but not liquefactioned, Queenspark Dr housing, 23.12.11 quake swarm

Along Queenspark Dr to Bower Ave again, there was little liquefaction mud up to the shopping centre. Before the shopping centre, in Parklands Reserve car park, a leaky water tanker was parked, with a pipe going to 6 taps. Two signs read:

WATER MUST BE
BOILED BEFORE
          USE

Psychological eh John?


26.12.11. Post quake water tanker, Parklands Reserve, Queenspark Dr, 23.12.11 quake swarm



26.12.11. Supermarket & liquefaction damage, Queenspark Dr, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Library & liquefaction damage, Queenspark Dr, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Queenspark Dr, nr shops, 23.12.11 quake swarm




The shopping centre & Council library were liquefactioned. Closer to Bower Ave again, there was massive liquefaction. Lamorna Rd was muddy. Down Hurst Pl was a huge pile of liquefaction mud. Near Bower Ave, a Land Rover was stuck in roadside mud. Psychological eh John?


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Lamorna Rd / Queenspark Dr, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Queenspark Dr, between Lamorna Rd & Hurst Pl, 23.12.11 quake swarm





26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Queenspark Dr / Hurst Pl, 23.12.11 quake swarm




26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Queenspark Dr, between Hurst Pl & Bower Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm










I drove up liquefactioned Bower Ave & along liquefactioned Broadhaven Ave, where I'd just wandered & parked by Forest Dr. I wanted to see more Parklands damage, and complete a smaller circuit of my figure 8 walk.


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Queenspark Dr / Bower Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm



Images, quake damaged Broadhaven Ave:

26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Bower Ave / Broadhaven Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Quake crack & liquefaction damage, Bower Ave, nr Boadhaven Ave cnr, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Bower Ave / Broadhaven Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Liquefaction, sink hole damage, cnr Broadhaven Ave / Bottle Lake Dr, 23.12.11 quake swarm

Forest Dr was as liquefactioned as Bower Ave: watery, muddy sink holes, muddy roadsides & pavements & part cleared road & driveways. Liquefaction was bad at Courtfield Cl junction & down Courtfield Cl. The area was yuppy land, as some precious men wore gloves while digging, not used to spade work. I reckoned they were ripped off by Forest Park Estate developers. Psychological eh John?

Parklands citizens deserved credit for road cone decorations, two months before it was fashionable to decorate road cones with flowers as a memorial for 185 quake dead during the 22.02.11 quake. On several road cones that morn, I saw Xmas tinsel & decorations on road cones, lightening grey liquefaction mud. Psychological eh John?


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Broadhaven Ave / Forest Dr, 23.12.11 quake swarm



Images, quake damaged Forest Dr:

26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Forest Dr, 23.12.11 quake swarm





26.12.11. Liquefactioned Broadhaven Reserve, seen from cnr Forest Dr / Courtfield Cl, 23.12.11 quake swarm. Bottle Lake Forest Park beyond


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Forest Dr / Courtfield Cl, 23.12.11 quake swarm



26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Forest Dr, between Courtfield Cl & Monterey Pl, 23.12.11 quake swarm







I wandered muddy quakescape past Broadhaven Park, past muddy, sink holed Monterey Pl, to Anglesea Ave & back, past Innwoods Rd, Inwoods Cl & a repeat bit of muddy Broadhaven Ave, past a house demolition site, to my muddy car. Psychological eh John?


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Forest Dr / Monterey Pl, 23.12.11 quake swarm





26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, Forest Dr, between Monterey Pl & Anglesea Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm



Images, quake damaged Broadhaven Ave:

26.12.11. Plastic sewage tank, Broadhaven Ave, nr Inwoods Cl, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Inwoods Cl / Broadhaven Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. House demolition site, Broadhaven Ave, nr Inwoods Cl, 23.12.11 quake swarm

I drove home via muddy Bower Ave again, past a parked fire engine & firemen talking to a distressed woman, worried about a water-filled sink hole outside her quake trashed home. Psychological eh John?

Images, quake damaged Bower Ave:


26.12.11. Fire engine & liquefaction damage, Bower Ave, nr Broadhaven Ave cnr, 23.12.11 quake swarm


26.12.11. Liquefaction damage, cnr Bower Ave / Broadhaven Ave, 23.12.11 quake swarm. Broadhaven Reserve & Bottle Lake Forest Park beyond

In October before the 23.12.11 quake swarm, CERA designated Parklands roads I wandered, to be green zone & repaired housing would need TC3 foundations, meaning the quake damaged land was liquefaction prone, requiring stronger foundations & continued fat rates, for Council of course.

Gotta ask why Parklands sandy swampland was developed in the first place? University & tech studies & Council consents were way behind quake reality, their ignorance & omissions fed developers' greed.

On CERA Landcheck website, I looked up specific Parklands roads: Forest Dr, Courtfield Cl, Monterey Pl, Bower Ave, Broadhaven Ave. As they were all green zoned by geotech engineers, Tonkin & Taylor, that didn't say much for engineers' quake expertise, insight & judgement, despite their long & deep slurping in the taxpayer funded, CERA trough. Psychological eh John?

Back to Burnside, I drove along Frosts Rd, by Travis Wetland, past another QE11 gate, quake flooded, which was quake flooded since the Feb 22 quake. Travis Wetland was claiming its own across Frosts Rd & into quake trashed QE11 Park. Psychological eh John?

24.12.11. The Press headline: "New quakes vindicate land decisions Brownlee."

That misinformation by minister of earthquake recovery Brownlee was psychotic eh John?

Parklands was zoned green by CERA & dug itself out of liquefaction mud after 3 quakes & that vindicated govt land decisions? Take a closer look at Parklands liquefaction Key. Take Brownlee along too. Why no Parklands red zoning Key?

Official response to the 23.12.11 Parklands disaster was a disgrace. Just bullshit:

PM Key & minister of quake recovery Brownlee smirked & doled out misinformation.  Brownlee was on holiday & returned to Christchurch soon after the disaster. Mayor Parker & his CEO Marryatt were on holidays too. (I doubted many disaster residents had money to go on holidays).

Mayor Parker returned from his holiday in Taupo & mouthed inanities on 23.12.11 TV, as facile as deputy mayor Button had done hours ago on TV. Council CEO Marryatt on holiday in Queensland didn't bother to return, despite public fury at his recently announced exorbitant salary increase.

Marryatt's Council minions did some silt digging & piling of silt on roadsides, on 24.12.11, the day after Parklands disaster. Xmas Day & Boxing Day, no digging. Marryatt's disaster management was a disgrace.

Authorities didn't get it that quakes didn't take human holidays. Over Xmas Day & Boxing Day official responses to Parklands disaster were frozen. Nothing went on at Parklands.

On Fri 23.12.11, CERA boss Sutton flew in a helicopter over 23.12.11 disaster areas & said on TV that he'd seen Parklands on Fri & it was bad. Brownlee stood behind him on TV, smirking, silent.

On Xmas afternoon, after dropping off Luke & his girlfriend at New Brighton, Leah & I did a recce of Parklands. I drove some of the roads I walked the next day, Boxing Day. We saw no Council workers, nor CERA contractors in Hi Vis vests digging mud on Xmas Day.

On Boxing day, when I walked around for about 3 hours, 8-11 am, all I saw was one water tanker spraying water on Bower Ave by Forest Park Estate. A couple of mechanical diggers were parked on mud there too. There were no Council workers, nor CERA contractors in Hi Vis vests removing silt wherever I walked on Boxing day morn. Just local residents, abandoned to get on with it.

As for geologists, seismologists & Civil Defence, it was time they got proactive, with tsunami warnings & procedures. Over the last 15 months, quakes had moved from west to east from Canterbury Plains across Christchurch & Port Hills & were presently active in Pegasus Bay. God help coastal residents when the big fault near Kaiapoi in Pegasus Bay fractured. Psychological eh John?

Coda: Sun 14.02.16. Valentines Day, 5.7 mag quake. Liquefaction damage, sink holes & sewage leaks at Bower Ave, Broadhaven Ave, Hurst Pl, Courtfield Cl & Linkwater Way. Psychological eh John?

Content & pics Copyright Mark JS Esslemont.

See Damage from quakes psychological - PM (The Press / Stuff Co).


See Flooded Christchurch area can't be fixed - expert (The Press / Stuff Co).


See CERA reviews Parkland zoning (The Press / Stuff Co).


See Parklands zoning right, engineer says - Tonkin & Taylor engineer (The Press / Stuff Co).