The lighthouse and the lichen

boulderbank blueskies and boulders

We had our first ever family holiday last week, we had a few days in Nelson together, an art project for Mr Carter and a spare home we could occupy, even some wheels to get around in. Luna and Blake had their first plane flights, it was wild! They recalled excitedly, the ‘plane lollies, cups of water and cookies’ they were delighted to receive onboard. Then there were the electric blankets and a fireplace, bliss, as far as they were concerned.

boulderbank seasponge

We knew we were in for some chilly weather, what we didn’t anticipate were beautiful clear days, and an adventure to – and up into – a lighthouse. Luna and Blake have been into maritime disasters, lighthouses and shipwrecks for some time, so this was extra special.

boulderbank lighthouse on the horizon

We were really taken by the Boulder Bank in Nelson, it’s something of a unique geological feature of the bay, and visited it a couple of times.

boulderbank rocks lichen

It’s a spit made from boulders, quite literally, boulders, boulders, everywhere.

boulderbank harbour

It’s an arid and extreme environment, unusual plants and lichen inhabit this place.

boulderbank plants

Really fascinating.

boulderbank lighthouse succulents

Beautiful colours textures.

boulderbank scrub

We all enjoyed learning about the history of human occupation of the Boulder Bank, there was evidence of human buildings and living still on the site.

boulderbank Luna in the rubble

Old buildings.

boulderbank spring plants

Unexpected spring flowers near the lighthouse.

boulderbank lighthouse outside

This is an historically significant light house, and while it is not a working lighthouse any more, it is well cared for and well worth the visit if you can negotiate the boulders, which are not for the lose ankles or gamy knees!

boulderbank lighthouse rusty window

Such an interesting building.

boulderbank lighthouse interior stairs

So beautiful on the inside!

boulderbank lighthouse inside

Great colours.

boulderbank lighthouse stairs

Steep stairs!

boulderbank lighthouse upstairs

Bleak and bold with the red paint.

boulderbank lighthouse bulb

That bulb!

boulderbank lighthouse north bank

Looking up the spit to the beginnings of the boulder bank.

boulderbank lighthouse south bank

And down towards The Cut.

There were amazing discoveries to be made everywhere, like bird and fish bones.

boulderbank bones

And so much rubbish! Our small party brought back a couple of bags of really random trash.

boulderbank Blake collecting

I was taken by the lichen covered rocks.

boulderbank lichen

Which were down the inside, harbour side of the bank.

boulderbank lichen and boot

Amazing colours and textures.

boulderbank lichen boulder


boulderbank lighthouse moss

And a small collection.

boulderbank lighthouse rusty finds

We could easily spend days here, so much to see, collect, wonder about and explore. We have a deeper appreciation of how hard life was for the people who built the lighthouse and other dwellings, living and working here too. I just love it when what we have been reading and learning about comes together in real life experiences.

I also loved the lichen, it’s very relevant to my current projects….but that’s another post.


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