Dead Bedfords

Driving around rural New Zealand, you will be treated with the sight of hundreds (thousands?) of abandoned work vehicles - a fair number of which seem to be Vauxhall Bedford trucks.

Sure, derelict trucks may be a photographic cliche, but these handsome beasts are often fascinating - particularly their beautiful rusting skins which are testament to the hard lives they have undoubtedly lead. 

I discovered this eighties model quietly abandoned in a cul-de-sac adjacent to Tokatoka Peak in Ruawai. It seemed a perfect final resting place - overlooking the Dargaville River and across the dairy farms of Te Kopuru and out to sea.

However, I returned to this spot a few years later and it was gone - hopefully relocated to a final resting place with just as much dignity.

 

If you travel from Wairoa to Rotorua via the Waikaremoana Road, you will see dozens of 'retired' farm vehicles - especially around the tiny township of Ruatahuna. 

This guy from the seventies sat in small field by the road facing the traffic and seemed almost to be begging for another chance to be put to work - you could almost felt sorry for him.

 

The aptly named Dry Road on the Whanganui Inlet in the Golden Bay area, hugs the shoreline alternately cutting through bush and traversing tidal mudflats on the way into the North West Nelson Conservation Park.

Along the way, I stopped for a classic sixties flatbed guarding the letterbox of a bush-hidden property. Standing proud in the baking midday sun, it's history writ large in the textured metal and fractured glass - had someone taken a shot at the owner? - I could only speculate.