Gulf Eco Charters Hen and Chicken Islands

Day boat tour on Gulf Eco Charters‘ Launch “Kokomo”, with Kurt Salmond and his Family. Click Picture below to access the Gallery on NUI.NZ

Taranga Island on aboard “Kokomo”

Departed Sandspit Yacht Club, around past Tawharanui where conditions was quite wavy, then direct to Taranga Island, part of the Hen and Chickens archipelago for our first snorkelling stop.

Then westward to the west side of the island where we anchored for a nice light lunch prepared by Clair (Kurt’s other half) of wraps and muffins.

We then cruised around north past West Chicken island before heading east towards Lady Alice Island where we anchored at Karimoko Bay for another spot of Snorkeling.

Aftewards, a short stop by Sail Rock and then a smooth cruise back to Base at Sandspit. Continue reading “Gulf Eco Charters Hen and Chicken Islands”

Gulf Eco Charters Hen and Chicken Islands

Waiarapa Exploration Road Trips

Over the New Year period, did a couple of road trips to explore around the Waiarapa region

First port of call was visiting Cape Palliser (Click Photo below to access gallery)

Cape Palliser Sunset

…and Putangirua Pinnacles (Click Photo below to access gallery) before diverting to Havelock North


A later attempt to finish off the road trip was made shortly after my King Country Road Trip, where I went to visit the Gallipoli The Scale of our War Exhibition at Te Papa. Click picture below to access the Photo Gallery

Te Papa, Scale of War Exhibition

With a visit to Castle Point, Tinui ANZAC walkway and Stone Hedge Aotearoa (Click Photo below to access gallery) staying at Rusty Nail Lodge in Taihape on the way back.

Castle Point, Waiarapa


Waiarapa Exploration Road Trips

Karamatura Valley and Mount Donald Mclean (2017)

Note May 2021: This post describes a hike that was done back in 2017 prior to being closed off due to Kauri Die Back concerns. The track has since reopened minus the Fletcher Track.

Trip notes for the Karamatura Valley and Mount Donald Mclean trail, a regular solo short to medium walk I regularly do. This will perhaps be my first attempt at documenting a trail in some sort of detail in a format inspired predominantly by MotoWalk NZ

In summary, A trek up through Fletcher Track up to Mount Donald Mclean and back via Karamutura Valley.

Looking down to Whatipu from Mount Donald Mclean Lookout (Click to Access Gallery)

Expect around 5 hours at a gentle pace, including 30-40 minutes for a lunch stop at Mount Donald McLean and a 30-40 minute Swimming stop at the Base of Karamatura Falls (Actual walking time, about 3½ to 4 hours) Continue reading “Karamatura Valley and Mount Donald Mclean (2017)”

Karamatura Valley and Mount Donald Mclean (2017)

Kohukohunui Trip Notes

Sunday 24th September 2017 – A walk up to Kohukohunui,  Photos posted to NUI.NZ.

We first attempted to access Kohukohunui via Moumoukai Hill Road [Topo link], but we discovered upon reaching the road end car park, the place is now pasted in signs with “No Public Access permitted”.

We then drove on around the seabird coast to Waharau [Topo link] and started our ascent from there taking the most direct route towards “Kohukohunui” via Waharau Ridge Track connecting on to Mangatangi Ridge Track. We stopping at Thousand Acre Campsite shelter for Lunch (and stopped there again on the way back). Due to time and daylight constraints we returned back the same way.

Click picture below to Access the Photo Gallery.

Track Junction towards Kohukohunui Trig at the Eastern end of Mangatangi Ridge Track

Other notes, considerations and points of possible interest…

  • Difficulty Grade: Medium (Approximately 6 on a difficulty scale out of 10). Some moderately steep sections + some mud.
  • The side track to Kohukohunui Trig states 10 minutes (pictured above). In reality, this is closer to 20 minutes
  • Track condtion of Waharau Trig track is generally good with a handful of slightly muddy patches.
  • Conditions were very muddy for the last 1.5 km to Kohukohunui Trig.
  • Waharau Car park closes at 7:00 p.m. during the Winter season (During non day light saving times) and 9:00 p.m during the Summer season (During day light saving times)
  • Thousand Acre campsite has a fairly newly built shelter with one long drop toilet.

It was also today I learned that Raro cordial mix gives me bugger all energy and has little effect at helping me get up hills. Apparently a row from Whitakers Chocolate bar gives you eight to ten times more Calories to burn.

Kohukohunui Trip Notes

Paeroa + Karangahake

Short 450m climb up to Karangahake Trig and back down the same way. The Settled forecast did not eventuate this time (mostly ended up with White) so will be one I have to come back again to do with a larger group and probably part of a weekend trip.

Click picture to view gallery (on NUI.NZ)…

Karangahake Gorge on a wet Day

Track conditions on Mt Karangahake Walk Track were very wet and slippery. Be very cautious particularly while descending down the track.

Paeroa + Karangahake

Indonesian Trip

Main highlights included Dukono (in North Maluku), Komodo, and Kelimutu. Running from about 29th July 2017 to 6th August 2017 on a rather packed schedule with about 12 different flights in total cris-crossing over the Eastern side of Indonesia.

View looking back down towards the campsite from near the crater of Gunung Dukono

Matt Davison’s Video of our Dukono Trip

Places stayed at (Will hyperlink these when I get over my Indonesian cold)…

  • Swiss-Bel Hotel Tuban
  • Julianna Hotel, Tobelo
  • A night in tents / bivvies on Gunung Dukono itself
  • Grand Dafam Hotel, Ternate
  • Sunset Hill Hotel, Labuan Bajo, Flores
  • Overnight on a boat anchored out at a bay with flying foxes.
  • Antoneri Lodge, Koanara, Kelimutu

Assorted Notes and observations… (Still to be filled out as of 2017-09-06)…

A large portion of the Indonesian private vehicle Fleet are Toyota “Avanza” and “Kijang” Multi-purpose vehicles. The older Kijang has a larger 2.0 litre motor with it’s smaller successor, the Avanza, having a smaller 1.5 litre motor.

The driving style over much of Indonesia is typical of many Asian national (except Singapore / Hong Kong) with a more aggressive driving style and which will often strike fear into Westerners who are not used to it.

The roads in the more remote parts of Indonesia that we visited where suprisingly good with many key routes sealed. Have to admit, was thinking the island of Halmahera to be mostly of gravel / dirt roads.

Everyone in the group took Anti-Malarials as we had entered into areas which were deemed as high risk.

Indonesian Trip

Taranaki Around the Mountain Circuit Trip Notes

Pictures from Taranaki Around the Mountain Circuit have been posted to NUI.NZ

With Matt Davison, Nicole Scheid, Brody Radford and myself. Flew down from Auckland very early Saturday Morning and flew back up to Auckland on the ANZAC Tuesday

Mount Taranaki at Sunset as seen from Waiaua Gorge Hut

T’was a very tough going track, mainly due to the steep and sharp undulations. Oaonui Track was pretty rough and took a lot of energy to do.  Was pretty much drained out at the end of both day 2 and day 3 of the Walk. Continue reading “Taranaki Around the Mountain Circuit Trip Notes”

Taranaki Around the Mountain Circuit Trip Notes