The recent Queen's Birthday weekend was spent in the Athenree/Waihi Beach area. The grass airfield at Wahi Beach seems to have been all but abandoned, with the cafe locked up and the adjoining hangar area apparently leased out to an upholsterer. No evidence of any local aircraft at all.
Fortunatly a quick afternoon trip to Mt Maunganui was possible, and this was rewarded with the sight of two visiting aircraft. The most travelled was Piper PA-28-161 ZK-LJJ, all the way from Christchurch:
Rather closer to home was Grumman American AA-5A Cheetah ZK-JER, a long-time Gisborne resident.
New (to me) among the locals was this AESL Airtourer T3A ZK-XXI/2, operated by Euroflight International Ltd. This airframe has a complex history, starting out as a Victa 100 in 1964 as ZK-CGP with the Auckland Aero Club. Come late 1973 they had it rebuilt as a T3A and re-registered as ZK-DSZ. Several private owners, mostly in the South Island, then followed from 1978 until 'DSZ was bought by Euroflight in late 2008 and the registration changed to ZK-XXI
The colours applied seem to be an attempt to replicate Airtourer T6/24 NZ1760 (c/n A542) which was operated by the RNZAF 1970 - 1993 before very briefly becoming ZK-JBX to facilitate export to Australia where it is still current as VH-AMX.
The real NZ1760 at Hamilton 27Mar1978:
Robinson R44 ZK-HOA/2 has been active in the Tauranga area since 2004 (apart from Jul2005 - Jul2006 when it became VH-HLK) but this is the first time I have seen it:
Auckland-based Cherokee Lance ZK-EIB was snugly tied down, but yes there is something odd there:
looking closely at the prop, I'm sure its not meant to be like that:
No doubt there is a story behind that work of art.