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East Cape Roadtrip - Day 3

Updated: Jul 21, 2020

Waking up at the VR Rotorua Lake Resort and thinking the benefit of this is that Lake Rotoiti is right outside our door... Problem is there was no sunrise to capture! Even if there was, the location didn't give us much to work with anyways.

We packed up and left early, went back into Rotorua and searched for brekkie. Stopped briefly at a place near the BP on Te Ngae Road but they had very little to choose from so kept on going. Ended up at a bakery called La Bonne Poulette. They had a decent but small selection for the breakfast lineup. I had a veggie quiche which was quite tasty but would have been much better with some salt/seasoning in the mix. Healthy option, check. Also may have had a pain au chocolat... shh don't tell anyone. Very tasty. The coffee, unfortunately, was not the best - made just a bit too hot, but passable.

As is the norm when in Rotorua, we made a round of the lakes. The weather has not been our friend today and we have our fingers crossed that the forecast improves for when we are heading over the East Cape.

First up, Lake Tarawera. As you can see, very foggy with little to look at.

Driving around and liking the misty/moody foresty feels. Pulled over at a random spot to try and capture it (in the drizzling rain). Rushing the shots and wondering if I will get any decent shots today at all...

Back towards Rotorua and just wondering what to do today for some shots, we tried the Redwoods for some inspiration. Always after that classic forest trees shot. Nailed it? Not yet...

Killing time in Rotorua and time to find coffee #2. What better to do on a rainy day than go shopping? (hahahaha that sounds like I like shopping but in reality, I rarely do but wanted some waterproof shoes for our adventure). Found some shoes at Kathmandu which will hopefully keep my toes dry and warm when I fall in a puddle (spoiler alert - I did later that night and my toes were still warm and dry so big ups to the shoes).

Grabbed coffee at Fix - a small hole in the wall espresso bar that was right next door to Kathmandu. Disappointed again. This one was scalding! Could not drink for the heat of it. Had to wait until after our adventure to Lake Okataina that I could drink it comfortably.

Lake 2: Lake Okataina - Still misty and moody. I'm sure we visited more lakes than this today but these two must be the only I took photos at.

We eventually made our way to Whakatane but were too early for check in. What else to do but try shopping some more? Who else can brag that they went to K-Mart and only spent $3.50??? Hahahaha. That deserves some sort of trophy right?

Seriously though, I was in search for a new tripod as I'm getting frustrated with my entry-level lightweight pod. May have made a somewhat-impulsive purchase at Harvey Norman to get a mini-pod for my closeup shots (would have come in handy yesterday when shooting those mushrooms!) If it wasn't on sale I probably wouldn't have bothered but because it was...

Manfrotto Pixi Evo 2-Section Minipod - Review coming soon? Maybe. If we get a rainy day and nothing better to do, it could be something fun to try.

Now for check-in. Staying tonight at the Barringtons Motor Lodge. Lovely tidy room with a touch of luxury. Comfortable bedding and spacious room. Good wi-fi (a MUST) but not the best shower. Can't win them all. 4/5

Then we went to the great little camera shop in Whakatane - Lazer Photo. They have great customer service and a great range of gear. I played around for far too long with all the tripods and am still undecided on which one to get. Possibly going back tomorrow. Going to sleep on it. Some things can be impulse buys and some things must be thought out. Hmmm. Yup, probably going back tomorrow...

After spending too long in the shop we needed to get to somewhere for sunset quickly in case it actually did something. It didn't. Nevermind. Had fun climbing around on the rocks, stepping in puddles (but staying dry, yeyah!) and getting covered in bird crap hahaha. Happy with the result though so it's all worth it in the end.

My favourite ones were all portrait orientation tonight (not often I go for portrait, but on this trip, I am favouring that and panoramics it seems.) Problem is, I can't decide whether I like them best in colour or black & white!

Last one is probably my favourite (composition-wise) but there was basically no light left so I fear the image quality is not as good. If we ever come back to this spot I will probably try to master it again.

Dinner was sought from Grandad's Takeaways - a fish n chip shop on the strand. I grabbed some chicken n chips but was not too impressed with either. Oh well. At least I am still up to date with my blog & editing on day 3!

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