|2014-10-11 click for more photo's|
11/10/2014 Opononi – Dargaville
We woke to a beautiful sunny day with lovely views out to the bay. Most of our clothes had dried out but unfortunately my brand new camera had suffered rain damage and all photo's now show a blurry bit but at least it is still functioning. The road remained quiet and became very beautiful once we started climbing up into the subtropical rainforest of Waipoua with it's many Kauri trees. We stopped off to have a look at Tane Mahuta, Lord of the Forest estimated to be around 2000 years old and one of NZ largest trees. The Kauri trees with their shallow fragile roots are now protected and we were surprised to find numerous roadside places selling crafts made from Kauri wood until it was explained to us that the wood used for crafts are all from preserved dug up trees from peat swamps not from current trees.
So far the going had been very pleasant even though we had climbed over 1200 meters so far but this soon changed. I expected an easy ride into Dargaville but a fierce headwind put paid to that idea. Progress became tediously slow and I was beginning to wonder if we would make it into Dargaville before dusk. Luckily once we had descended to nearer sea level I was able to tuck in behind Malcolm who bravely took the brunt of the wind. We arrived in Dargaville around five and really landed on our feet in the beautiful Commercial Hotel with the incredibly friendly hosts Peter and Pam. The welcoming cup of tea soon turned into wine [ provided by the landlady ]which was also shared by our hosts friends and many travel adventure were shared in this excellent company. All topped off by a visit with them to the local Thai restaurant.
|Kauri tree approximately 2000 years old|