11 February 20
Posted at 1:02
Today, Sunday 9th February, we left Coopers Beach along with Andrew and Debbie. I’ve been upset to leave all of the six places we have stayed so far on this trip but I think most upset to be leaving this area, I love it and there is so much more we could experience here. Only thing for it is we will have to return one day!
We are heading south to a place called Puhoi in North Auckland, a good way north of Auckland (60km or more) in UK distances but not so far for Kiwis. We decided to go south via the West coast as opposed to the more direct SH1 East coast route. This enabled us to take in the Hokianga harbour, which appears to be a lake but is actually the estuary to the Waihou river. We stopped at Opononi and Omapere to admire the views and especially at Arai te Uru where I took some drone photos. We then went down to the Waipoua forest and saw the magnificent Tane Mahuta, a kauri tree some two thousand years old, 51.5m high and with a trunk girth of 13.8m. The trunk volume is estimated at 244.5 cubic metres!! This is the biggest of many massive ancient kauri trees in the forest. The trees are threatened by a disease called kauri dieback – the lengths the conservationists and everyday Kiwis are going to stem the spread of this awful disease is commendable.Tane Mahuna
Tane Mahuna with Marilyn for scale
After leaving the forest we said goodbye to our friends for a couple of weeks, we will stay with them at the end of our journey, they headed home to the Bombay Hills and we set off for a cosy 100 year old cottage in Puhoi that once was the office for a brothel in downtown Auckland. More of that in the next instalment