Between a rock and a Super place
A group of Crusaders have traded rugby balls and gym routines for sledgehammers and shovels, lending their brawn to help work on Nelson's Brook Waimarama Sanctuary.
Members of the team were out at the wildlife sanctuary this morning, chipping away at the main loop track and making it more accessible for the community.
As part of its annual pre-season community service, the team had been split up into four groups, each travelling to a different area in the team's catchment, and 10 players were assigned to Nelson.
Sanctuary trust general manager Hudson Dodd said the team would be able to get three weeks' worth of work done in a few hours. The aim was to widen the track by cutting away the rock face and building up material on the side closest to the river.
The task was a good fit for the rugby players, he said.
"They seem pretty into it, they do all kinds of charity work, but they don't often get such brawny work as this."
Coach Todd Blackadder said it was always fantastic to be helping out in the Nelson region.
"We've got hunters in the team, it's good to get them outdoors."
Halfback Willi Heinz said the work was something a bit different and allowed them to help out while keeping fit.
"It's not what we're used to, it makes a change to running in the field and lifting weights."
It was great to be able to get into the community for a couple of days, and meet people in the towns that they would not normally visit, he said.
Prop Owen Franks, who is from Motueka, said it was pleasing to get back to his roots. "It's good to be doing some hard labour and do a bit for Nelson."
The Nelson Mail