Another wonderful Tuesday came by a few weeks ago (which is currently, my only day off), and it was not going to be wasted. We had a choice of either going hiking or taking a long trip to check out Hobbitton, but after reading that it is $75 for a 90 minute guided tour, we opted to hike.
The Hunua Ranges is a huge park in the greater Auckland area about an hour south east of the city center. Since we were pretty impressed by Piha, we decided to give it a try! The first thing to know is that it is massive, with quite a few entry points and hiking trails. Since Sid and I are both
grossly out of shape not at the zenith of our form, we went with the easy one to a 23 meter waterfall.
After hanging out for a bit in the picnic area, we decided to take the longer hike to the nearby damn. The entire loop is supposed to take three hours which turned out to be about right. One interesting thing about this area is that 20% of all plant species in New Zealand are found here.
The hike was full of greens. It reminded me a lot about our hike in Koyasan in Japan. Not quite as bright, eerie, or historic, but still quite interesting. There was the initial bridge that overlooks the river formed by the waterfall.
Another river you have to cross.
Some pretty interesting trees.
And finally you arrive at the reservoir.
It wouldn’t be New Zealand without a crap load of sheep though.
There were also some cool plants
that made the walk very enjoyable. One interesting thing we came across were some eggs which are probably part of some breeding program in the region.
We did notice some large native birds, but they were too far away to get a decent picture. I didn’t even bother and just took it in with my eyes.
Towards the end, Sidney’s leg was cramping up and my knees were giving out. We’re getting old! Nah, we just need to get out and do some exercise more often. I hope we have the time (AND MONEY) to do some more cool stuff during our working holiday here. New Zealand has quite a lot to offer, if you have the money for it!
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