This blog is about my travels. At home in New Zealand, in other parts of Oceania, North, Central and South America and in Europe.
I headed to Otaki forks over the weekend but headed north this time, towards Waitewaewae hut. I crossed a swing bridge on the Otaki river. I headed up the track which had quite a lot of windfall to clamber over. There are also a lot of beautiful Kiokio / Crown ferns, translucent Heruheru / Prince of Wales ferns and Raurenga /Kidney ferns, species we don't get up in the northern half of the north Island. There are also stands of mature Rimu trees which are hundreds of years old.
I got to the hut by the evening. It is a nice hut, maintained by the Hutt Valley Tramping club, and certainly spacious enough for large groups.
In the morning it was drizzly and rainy. Not really rainy but a bit grey and overcast. It was still great to be outside though.
I had just arrived in Wellington and decided to go for a day trip from Otaki forks carpark in the Tararuas to Waiotauru hut. It was good weather, so I thought I'd go for a day walk.
It was a lovely day and the rata were in full bloom thanks to the conservation efforts in the area.
I got to rustic Waiotauru hut by about lunchtime before heading back. As they say, an adventure is not about the destination, but about the journey.
The plan had been to climb lots of peaks in Arthurs pass, but alas the weather was bad again. Nevermind, we headed to the Oxford forest, not far from Christchurch.
We stayed the night at Blackridge hut. It had a toasty fire and was a very cozy spot. A lot of people stayed there overnight. The next day we headed over to Salmon Creek biv and then looped back via Blackridge hut then down to Wharfdale and out to the carpark.
This was another midwinter trip with the ladies. The weather wasn't the greatest, but we had a fun time at Tukino lodge on the Eastern side of Ruapehu. The weather wasn't good enough for attempting peaks, but it was perfect for building snow shelters. We built a large igloo off to one side of the ski field. It was the work of many hands and apparently stayed up a long time after we had gone.
In September, a friend and I decided to go on a trip to Whirinaki in the central north Island. The track is called the Moerangi loop and is popular with mountain bikers. It goes past three huts, Moerangi hut, Rogers hut and Skips hut. Whirinaki is known for its huge, ancient podocarp trees. Because many of them are so tall, they are also safe habitats for rare birds like Kaka and kakariki.
One of the highlights on the trip were the frequent sightings of Whio/Blue duck. We saw nine of them in total. They have a haunting, whistling call, and do tend to blend in quite well with their grey / blue surroundings. They like to live in pristine, fast running water, which makes Whirinaki an ideal habitat for them.
This was a great ladies trip to the Puketeraki range in Canterbury. We had planned to climb a peak in Arthur's pass that weekend but very high winds meant that it was a much better idea to go tramping instead. We had lunch at Tarn hut. It got windier and windier up on the tops. The wind was so strong we were battling against it and trying not to get blown over. My sunglasses nearly got blown off while I was wearing them. It was a relief to get back down to the bush line. We also dropped down into the Valley and some of us waded across the stream to bag Young man stream hut as well. By the time we got back to our cars after 10 hours it was dark but the wind was still really strong. It was a great trip with a great group of ladies!
The next morning four of us drove over to Castle Hill. It is a beautiful place, basically a bunch of mysterious rock formations that are perfect for bouldering. It rained in the morning but happily the sun came out and the boulders dried off really quickly. So we had a fun afternoon bouldering in the sun in an amazing place.
These are some pictures from a club trip to the Hauhangaroas in the Waikato. It is the Southernmost range for Kauri so the bush had an interesting mixture of trees which also included large Tawa trees mixed with Rimu trees. Many of these trees are hundreds of years old and luckily escaped felling so that we could (and other people in hundreds of years time can) also enjoy them.
I went on an interesting trip with my family to Puketi forest in Northland.
The forest is very lush with some very large mature Kauri trees as well as other species that are only found in Northland. It is kept in good condition by DOC because of its importance as a conservation area.
From Puketi hut we headed up the track through the Kauri and happened upon another small hut used by DOC for it's conservation efforts in the area. On the way back we saw a white Alseuosmia macrophylla (they usually have crimson flowers). They smell amazing. We also saw a pair of rare North Island Kokako that were singing in the trees.
After all my travelling throughout the Americas, I was finally heading back to New Zealand! I flew back from the US via Los Angeles and then had a stop over in Fiji.
The Pacific ocean really is large. I saw the Islands of the Hauraki gulf in the bright New Zealand light. I was back home!
I visited Colorado and headed for the hills. Here are a few photos from some of the hikes a friend and I went on.
The weather was super hot and the forest was a lot drier than I am used to back in NZ. The views were beautiful and there was a lot of hiking that was easily accessible from Boulder.
One thing I particularly liked was the bright blue dragon flies. They tended to move too fast for me to get a photo of them. However, going back through my photos, I found I snapped a picture of one completely by accident, so here it is.
The next day we hiked up South Boulder peak.
There had been wild fires in the area but the forest was already starting to regenerate. At the top we got great views and were able to gaze eye to eye with the eagles that were flying around the peaks.
I am a traveller from New Zealand. My blog is to inform friends and family about my adventures. I hope you enjoy it.