We are SO not backpacking ! travel blog

Thrillseekers Canyon (jet boat in the corner)

We drive on to Hanmer Springs which is a convenient stop off point as it's not too far from Christchurch where we have to be the next day. After the caving disaster, we're still thinking that we haven't done enough "stuff" in NZ. There is a place ("Thillseekers Canyon") just short of Hanmer Springs and we pull up to see the last gorge jet boating trip of the day depart. The next one isn't till 11am the next day but we skillfully persuade the bloke to run another at 10am by waving a VISA card in his face.

That booked we find a campervan site and try to get our cases packed for the first time in nearly a fortnight.

Next day we're up and away in good time and get to the jet boating early. It looks like it's only going to be us two, then at the last moment another two arrive. Boat driver asks if we've been jetboating before. Yeah on Lake Rotorua I reply. That's girlboating, says the driver bloke with feeling. Gorge jetboaters obviously look down on their lake counterparts.

We set off and go hammering down the river for 14km at between 65 and 85 km/h. He tells us how the engines work and how much water they push out but I won't bore you with the details. Only engineers would care. It's WAY more fun than on the lake. After whooshing (technical term) down and then back up, with spins and several near misses (or so they appear to the terrified passengers) he pauses to tells about a rock or something. I ask him if he likes his job, knowing fine well the answer. Nah mate, I hate it he says. Can't wait to get a job as a grocery assistant.

Once we're finished there we head back down to Christchurch, drop the van off (no tears and it was considerably easier getting rid of it than picking it up) and get on the flight to Auckland.

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