Colour me blue, Cliff

ABOUT THE SOUTH

LLOYD ESLER
Last updated 16:06 01/09/2014
Southland Times photo
Bluecliffs, west of the Waiau River mouth.

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Bluecliffs, to the west of the Waiau River mouth, is one of several coloured Southland place names.

The colour comes from the Pleistocene mudstone along the beach.

Other coloured place names are Yellow Bluff upstream from Otautau, Greenpoint, Red Hills, Redcliff, White Hill, Emerald Stream, Blue Lake and Green Lake.

The strangest movement of water in Lake Wakatipu occurred on January 2, 1945. Ted Mackenzie, of Walter Peak, recorded: "The lake rose three feet and fell again in two hours.

Some members of my family with a visiting cousin, left Walter Peak wharf to spend the day in Glenorchy.

When they boarded the steamer, the lake was normal below the decking of the wharf. However, when the steamer returned to Walter Peak in late afternoon the lake had risen over three feet, covering the decking of the wharf.

Those alighting had to remove their shoes and wade along the wharf. Within two hours the lake had dropped well down - the water being once again well down the piles of the wharf, at the level it had been in the morning."

Southland's only recorded escaped elephant was Jessie who slipped out of her chains as she was being loaded aboard a ship at Bluff in 1961 for a voyage to Australia. She headed west, eating flowers from Bluff gardens as she went. After being given a tranquilliser injection she was coaxed back to the wharf with the help of a breakdown truck and made her way up the gangway eight hours late.

Southland's remotest point from salt water is on the Otago- Southland border, in the tussocky hills of Glenaray Station 18km north of Piano Flat.

The point is 116 kilometres from both Taieri Mouth in one direction and Deepwater Basin at Milford Sound in the other.

The remotest point from salt water in New Zealand is a few kilometres north of the Clyde Dam, at about 120km from the coast.

Southland's highest mountain is 2756m Mount Tutoko in Fiordland. It was first climbed in 1924 by Samuel Turner and Peter Graham.

The mountain can be seen from the Milford Road.

About The South
Lloyd Esler 
15 Mahuri Rd, 
Otatara, RD 9, 
Invercargill 
Phone-fax (03) 213 0404 
email: esler@southnet.co.nz

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- The Southland Times

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