What an amazing time I had at Alltwood Farm in Dannevirke, North Island, New Zealand!  A friend was nice enough to put in me touch with his parents Jane and John who own the farm.  Alltwood stands for stream going through the woods and it perfectly expresses the beauty of this property.  I got to work with sheep, Jane cooked some delicious meals including a proper Kiwi roast (lamb, veggies and potatoes) and a kiwi pavlova (mmmmmmm) and most off all I felt as though Jane and John are kindred spirits!  We share many of the same values – traveling, a good life, life being about people, healthy living, sustainability and family.  Their families are originally from the UK.  John’s family started the farm and grew it over the years by acquiring neighboring properties.

Alltwood is a beef and sheep farm.  They fatten up bulls and steers (all males, but the bulls still have their manlihood) and sheep (lambs, ewes, and hogarts) who graze on the land.  They also sheer the sheep’s fleeces for wool which is exported for New Zealand carpets. The farm is huge. It has thousands of acres (1,750), 5K sheep and just under 2K cows.  John operates with the help of one guy, Bill, but does most of the work on his own. The farm is gorgeously hilly with rugged terrain and the beautiful stream running through it.  The farm is directly downstream from a ‘station’ or large co-owned farm but you wouldn’t know it because Altwood is so expansive.

New Zealand: 3MM People, 60MM Sheep

Riding around on the ATV, herding sheep with dogs Lou and Rogue

IMG_4885IMG_4896

The beautiful property

Wooly and sheared sheep

IMG_4899IMG_4900

Sheep, sheep everywhere!

IMG_4903IMG_4904

Sheep Everywhere

In the barn for shearing the ‘pooey bums’

IMG_4908IMG_4910

Shearing stations in the barn – one sheep yields a lot of wool!

IMG_4928IMG_4930

See it in action

Happy to be here with my gracious hosts Jane and John!

IMG_4916IMG_4951

Alltwood Farm is an alternative to a WWOOF farm.  Reach out to Jane and John at alltwood@farmside.co.nz if you would like to coordinate a visit!  They are happy to host anyone who shares a passion for New Zealand and farming!

Advertisements