Climate good for campsites

By Corey Charlton

Many Hawke's Bay camping grounds are reporting high numbers of visitors over the holiday period.

The hot summer the region has had so far is believed to have contributed to the influx, as has the economic climate.

Hastings Top 10 Holiday Park manager Evander Creswell estimated their visitor numbers were up 30 per cent on last year.

"I'd have to say last year we had a good summer," she said. "This year we've had an exceptional one so far.

"The weather definitely helps. We've had the best weather in the country consistently over the summer."

For the two-week period encompassing Christmas and New Year the park had about 600 staying, 80 per cent of which were New Zealanders. The park's capacity is 800.

"All in all so far we've had a very good summer."

The Department of Conservation manages nine campsites in Hawke's Bay, at which ranger Harry Verwey said most visitors behaved themselves and adhered to the rules such as fire bans.

"There was the odd fire, but the majority of the people behaved themselves really well," he said. "Maybe people are getting a bit more adventurous and maybe a bit more aware of what is out there."

In previous years the Lake Tutira campsite had been a popular choice for campers. However, he believed the lake's recent water quality issues had put people off.

"Glenfalls this year was packed. Tutira is usually, but that wasn't at all [this year] because of the lake, I think."

Many of the visitors were Hawke's Bay families, he said, who stayed for about a week.

"If they need to shoot back home it's not that far as opposed to going to [camp in] Taupo."

- Hawkes Bay Today

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