I was expecting to see Arthurs pass covered in snow, instead it was dry with most ski fields hanging CLOSED signs warning potential customers of their troubles. 

This for me was the reminder and reinforcing act of why I do this. We don't just rely on nature for resources but for everything, in mending the world, for cleaning our air and water systems, for growing our food and keeping us alive. With global warming, global spending and lack of business and personal accountability we will not be able to sustain our current way of living. We all play a roll either major or minor, the first step with everything is knowing there is a problem, next we have to make a plan and act on it. 

While searching through the pass looking for large pine forests I came across a small stretch leading through to a valley floor, it was nearing dark at this time, I found a fallen tree which was a little smaller in size than previous trees. The rain had set in and the sun had been hidden behind the clouds all day. Given that the tree was smaller I tried to cut nearest the base that I could. The root system was strong and showed itself to be more difficult than I had anticipated. The next morning I awoke to find the rain even heavier than yesterday, I returned to my stump and continued on my mission. As I was clearing out the root system I felt a heavy presence, like I was being watched, this feeling stayed with me for a few minutes, it didn't leave me so I decided to stand up and have a look around. I could not believe my eyes, Five large and wild horses had neared me grazing through the pines. More inquisitive than anything else they closed in to get a closer look and smell. I continued my work with a certain amount of vigour and pace, I found a star picket nearby to use as leverage to help shift the stump upright, I finally managed to upturn the stump to get a clearer idea of what could be accomplished. Unfortunately it was too small and would not suit. 

I decided to quickly pack up what tools I had and make a speedy exit leaving the large beast to their terrain. 


I decided to spend the remainder of the day driving back to Christchurch and visiting local attractions and checking the coast line. 

Then I was on the plane back to Byron Bay. 

Thank you to Charley my partner for always supporting everything that I do and for the gift of travel.

Thank you for everyone who has supported and encouraged me so far on my journey, thank you for reading and taking interest in what I do.


Travelling through the Crown Range and into Wanaka is one of my most favourite drives. The landscape feels like Mars, isolated and surrounded by baron beauty. The lake is the heart and soul of Wanaka, surrounded by snow capped mountains adventure sports are the main attraction. 

A few years back while I was travelling I came across a tree that had fallen and hoped it was still there. I searched near by woods to see what I could find and explored new areas that I have not been before.

While walking around Lake Wanaka I came in contact with this rotted out stump, its curves and interesting patterns grabbed my attention. The constitution of the stump left me worried but I wanted to try and see if I could pull come interesting textures. After thirty minutes of sawing and burning I came to the conclusion that it would just not work, I left it to decay into the earth and create new life in the distant future.

My searches in and around the area came up short so I decided to drive out to where I had first seen this stump years ago and crossed my fingers it was still there. 

To my relief and joy the fallen tree was still there, although she had reduced in size with locals cutting fire wood from her from previous seasons. 

I wasted no time and pulled all my tools out and got to work. My saw was no match for the stump, shorter in length and with several knots of hard wood pushing through made the next few hours a give and take scenario. I had to learn to be patient and work with the tree, not to force my way through but to be guided along her subtle differences. cutting from one side and switching back and forth is less than desired, trying to get a smooth clean cut became impossible. the end result looked like a warped vinyl record, I spend the rest of the afternoon into the evening cutting back and trying to create a somewhat flat surface.

I have not felt more proud pulling this print, every step and every stump is a lesson, on refinement, on patience and on understanding my limits. While I was planing on my hands and knees a local pulled over and asked me what I was doing, I explained and showed some of my previous work. He asked me if I would like to know a bit about the history regarding this tree in particular, I replied with "of course" and he proceeded to explain that a few years ago there was a huge storm that passed the area ravaging the township and surrounding areas, a local teacher was driving home and right before him this tree came crashing down, his car ran straight into the tree flipping his car sending him into the ditch on the side of the road. He narrowly avoided death and came away with only broken bones. 

The light was leaving with every pressing, gradually getting darker and darker, pulling the last print around 5:30 pm I packed the car and headed back to Wanaka to clean and pack the car once more.