The Cathedral and The Gorge
I want to apologies for the time it took to get this video out. I’ve been having difficulties colour correcting the videos and am still not happy with the outcome. I thought I’d better stop fussing about and just get it out.
So here we are, day 5 of our little trip around the Northern Island of New Zealand. Again, picking up from the last video , today we do a small hike to Cathedral Cove, visit the Hot Water Beach and explore the Karangahake Gorge.
As with every morning, I got up early to explore the surroundings. Cooks Beach in this case. It was an overcast morning but warm nonetheless. It was sooo quiet and calm as I walked along the river to the beach. Even there it was surprisingly tranquil. Not a soul to be seen.
Though it was a beautiful area, I had great difficulty finding a composition. So I snapped a couple of photos just to document the area. I did find a wild mushroom, which took all of my attention. I must have taken half a dozen shots of it. Trying out macro photography. I quite like the photos.
After breakfast we headed to Hahei Beach where the track to Cathedral Cove starts. An easy walk that anyone can do. A couple of small, steep hills but take your time and you’ll be just fine. The breathtaking views make it worth the effort. The first thing you see as you arrive at Cathedral Cove is the Smiling Sphinx Rock, seemingly floating in the water not far from the beach. Then you notice the hole in the cliff and wonder how it’s possible. At low tide you can make your way through it,to the other side, where the Te Hoho Rock sits, just like the Sphinx, in the middle of the water. The late morning and the amount of tourists, including us, didn’t make for beautiful photos. Quite happy with what I took but I’ll have to come back here to get the shots I was looking for.
By the time I got back to the campervan, where my friends were waiting in hunger, it was already past lunch time. We took off for Hot Water Beach for lunch and the hot springs, of course. Lunch was delicious and so was the local beer at Hotties. The hot springs though, we never got to try. Though the beach is, I don’t know, a kilometre long, the hot springs’ area is tiny. There were sooo many people there in a frenzy digging up holes everywhere that the wonder of it all had quickly disappeared. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a must do but maybe in a period of the year where there may be less people. What did amaze me though, were the large boulders on the southern end of the beach. That was beautiful.
Once over our disappointment of the hot springs, we made our way to the Karangahake Gorge. There are a handful of tracks ranging from an hour walk to eight hours. I can’t remember if we did the Rail Tunnel Loop or the Windows Walk Loop but, either way, it was absolutely amazing. A wonderful walk through tunnels with beautiful views down the valley and the Waitawheta River. It’s a pity we didn’t have more time, I would’ve loved to do the four hour track.
It was late afternoon and we needed to find a spot for the night. We chose the Paeroa RV Center because it was close and had powered sites and most importantly, a laundrette.
That’s it for day 5. I hope you enjoyed it. I know it’s not easy with the jumpy footage. I hope to see you on the next video where I receive my Masters in Milking, dip our feet in hot water, race downhill and visit a Maori village. Goodnight.
p.s. special thanks to Alain for the use of some of his photos and videos.