Driving down the hill after a day on The Remarkables ski slopes close to New Zealand’s Queenstown, we spotted three sheep grazing on the roadside, well beyond any farm fences.
My companion, a former sheep farmer from outback Australia, estimated that each escapee carried a heavy two seasons’ worth of wool, evidence that they were “on the lamb…er…lam” from a local farm.
Their woolly state was still a far cry from that of New Zealand’s shaggiest sheep, nicknamed Shrek, who evaded the shears for six years by hiding out in caves on a farm north of Queenstown. This wily merino male, looking like a giant dirty puffball of wool, carried 27 kilos of fleece, enough to obscure its vision.
We left the cunning trio of fleecy felons enjoying their freedom, grass and views opposite a natural lookout over Lake Wakatipu.