Hi All,

I'd like to introduce myself. Im a dutch guy called Hans Smeets and I dable in bushcraft a bit ;). 

I visited your beautiful country for the 1st time in 2017 and again in 2018 and come this October I will be moving there (permanently).

I love the nature, freedom and emptiness New Zealand has to offer. Imagine I come from a country the size of Canterbury with 17 million people living in it, so you can imagine how crowded that can be. ( we don't have any real nature here anymore and every 100 meters or so you will find a path or firebreak and your cellphone always works :) )

I'm not so much into traditional skills, though i love seeing them (some of which i wish i could master), but when i go outdoors i tend to carry hightec things with me like a cuben fiber tarp, ripstop nylon hammock ferrorod etc etc .  I have of course played around with firebow's and flint/charcloth...both with various success (or failure :) )

One thing I hope to do in New zealand is actually being able to catch a fish in a stream, clean it and grill it ...believe it or not , in the Netherlands nearly impossible to do that , due to regulations etc. Basically you would have to go to a special stocked pond to catch for instance a trout (you would pay and entry fee, followed by x amount per trout you catch :)

I will be living in Chrustchurch and I am of course curious to see what the outdoor community is  in New Zealand

Warm regards

Hans Smeets

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Hi Hans,


Hope you will enjoy your time here.

Do some research on what's possible here as it can be really different from Netherland. For fresh water fishing you need a license that will be different depending where you are fishing. There can also be a lot of fire restriction.

I still strugle to know what I can do and where.

Same thing with wood access still not clear about this so cannot help.



Hi Matt,

I have been doing some reading up already and indeed there are quite a lot of rules, but still more opportunity than overhere I think. Fire restrictions are quite logical from what i have seen of the south island so far, especailly the east ? coast seems to be pretty dry

Over here fire bans are common to. I prefer my trangia as preferred cooking method anyway.

The access I'm still figuring out, but I do see DoC had some nice sites with no facilities and certain areas you can go into with a form of license.

I'm not sure about the hammock posibilities on the east coast from what i have seen sofar so that will be a learning curve :)

Welcome to BCNZ Hans,

I hope you enjoy NZ.

Check on DOC's website, they have plenty of opportunity for camping and the like, just make sure you know what is allowed and what isn't.

Hope to hear more from your adventures!



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