Woke up this morning and while drinking coffee and enjoy breakfast with an ocean view my girlfriend said she still want to see a Kauri tree. Because our trip is coming to an end we decided to search for one we can actually touch without damaging the tree roots. And we found one! Only problem we needed to drive back all the way up north! Oops… So only one cup of coffee for me, let’s start that engine! Our first stop for today will be at the Tutukaka Coast. There we’re gonna search for a tree called Tane Moana. It’s supposed to be an easy walk.
Only finding the right spot to park and start with the track might be a little search to get there. It’s a really small sign in the forest while driving by. Will put the location from the track start at the Steemit Worldmap to make life a little bit easier.
Right back to the tree, we started at the track, small walk through some forest of pines. Then you need to cross some private land, including cows! After that the walk will be getting a lot easier with wide dirt roads. There aren’t many viewpoints along these track, but you can enjoy all the different sounds from the woods and there are a lot of bee hives.
After a short walk we finally got at the tree. It ain’t gonna win any
prize for the biggest tree but it’s more wide than tall. But none the
less Tana Moana is an impressive lord for sure.
The DoC created a nice short walkway from the track till the tree, so you can’t damage the tree roots.
After a big hug with the tree (no not touching the roots, standing on the fence) we got back to our van to continue our way down south. Next stop will be something from my list, yes it’s waterfall time again! 🎉
We’re on our way to Piha beach area. Oh boy this area promises a lot of adventure and action. But we’re not here for the surf, but for two beautiful waterfalls. Yeah that’s rightno surf action here. We already planned that again for when were back in Auckland. Gonna take some sup lessons for the small technical adjustments to ride the waves way better.
But back to Piha, there is almost nothing, I love it! We saw a place for some fish ‘n chips and a drink. Oh and the campsite with a beautiful view at Lion Rock and walking distance to the beach. That beach will be a story for tomorrow because there will be some ANZAC memorial. For now Waterfall time. 🎉
First stop around Piha beach will be the Kitekite falls. Kinda funny, We didn’t see any sign for this waterfall around the beach but it’s there for sure. And this waterfall is stunning! From the car park you’ll first walk through the jungle. Normally this is an easy track, but after the cyclone earlier the whole jungle is total chaos. Trees ripped out of the ground, lianas everywhere etc.
But it makes the walk worth it when you reach the first viewpoint at the falls.
Oh did I already mention that you need to bring your swimming pants with you while going to these falls. Well you must bring them for sure! The real fun part from this fall is that it’s 3 tiered. It has multiple pools you can swim in. And the upper pools well we enjoyed them to long because it got dark while we walked back to our van. When you get at the base at the left side from the pool you can climb your way up through the bushes to reach the third pool. The second pool is a little difficult to reach I think because you need to rockclimb and it’s not that big. You can see it while standing at the third pool.
While finding our way back to the bottom pool we noticed how slippery this track can be. Don’t go to the third pool after some heavy rain. At the bottom this pool was finally deserted so we got it for ourselves, and that’s the reason we stayed here way to long.
While returning at the van it was already sunset time, we missed the sunset almost at the Lion Rock, we want to see the light creep around the lions mane.
Too late for a proper sunset picture from Lion Rock, stupid me tried to took some video with the Mavic, but I failed I think.. But oh boy the sunlight really makes the Lion come alive at sunset while the light is creeping around the rock. And the black sand really shines with the golden light.
These falls aren’t that far from Piha beach, but the time we got here it was totally dark. So no night picture from this falls. But we will be back here tomorrow for our morning shower. But watching a waterfall falling down with a soft stream with your headlight is something special. You’re really focused on the sounds from the waterfall and not only the views. Tried to capture some night pictures with stars but the moon was to bright I think. Still need to check them out. So Those are for later.
For now sweet dreams. 😴