Film maker ex­plores post-quake wilder­ness

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‘‘I didn't re­alise how far out of my com­fort zone I would be.’’

A team of ad­ven­tur­ers used new tech­nol­ogy to ex­plore the wilder­ness of Marl­bor­ough af­ter the Novem­ber 14 earthquake dra­mat­i­cally changed the land­scape.

Wa­iau-Toa Odyssey, di­rected by Si­mon Water­house, doc­u­ments a six-day jour­ney un­der­taken in Fe­bru­ary by five ad­ven­tur­ers.

The film won the Best New Zealand-made film at the NZ Moun­tain Film Fes­ti­val open­ing in Wanaka on Fri­day.

The ex­pe­di­tion lead­ers, Damian Stones and Dean Parker, were in­spired by the jour­neys of over­seas ad­ven­tur­ers.

The group trav­elled un­sup­ported, us­ing bikes and rafts, to travel 300 kilo­me­tres from St Ar­naud in the Nel­son Lakes to Kek­erengu on the East Coast.

The trip is thought to be the first in New Zealand to use new pack-raft tech­nol­ogy.

The inflatable rafts could be packed down and car­ried, al­low­ing the ad­ven­tur­ers to get their bikes into ar­eas usu­ally too dif­fi­cult to ac­cess.

Parker said the trip took him ‘‘right back to the days of ex­pe­di­tion pad­dling’’.

The film pre­miers at the Lake Wanaka Cen­tre on July 1, from 4pm and Queen­stown Memo­rial Cen­tre on July 8, from 4pm.

Fes­ti­val open-

ing, page 18.

SI­MON WATER­HOUSE

Pack raft­ing on the Clarence River in the award-win­ning film, Wa­iau-Toa Odyssey.

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