Thursday, December 25, 2008

Northwest Coast

Saturday morning we drove back south through Dargaville and then Te Kopuru. One of our guidebooks had mentioned a home in Te Kopuru which the residents had decorated entirely in buoys and ballcocks, something we had to see. After Dargaville, we visited the great Kauri forests on the coast. The Kauri are enormous trees, mostly all gone, but preserved in a few places, especially in the northwest. We walked to the largest known Kauri, a hugh tree, and got a chance to experience a bit of the “bush.” The rest of the day we spent driving north along beaches and bays, ferrying from Hokiana to Kohukothu, and then further north through Kaitaia, a nice town, and then on to the farther northern shore, the 90-mile beach, toward Cape Reingal, the North Island's northernmost point. We spent the night camped on the beach at Tapotupotu Bay, grilling steaks we had bought in Auckland. The whole northwest coast is very sparsely settled.

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