From the forests to the Bay of Plenty

Trip Start Apr 01, 2010
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Trip End Apr 30, 2010


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Flag of New Zealand  , North Island,
Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A Run from the Northland

Well today was all about travel.  We woke up at a decent hour, thanks to Vaughn's built-in alarm clock.  After some coffee and friendly conversation with our fellow campers, we hit the road early with our sites set for the biggest tree in all of Oceana.  These Kauri trees grow pretty tall and really thick.  The Kiwis are pretty proud of them and like to compare them to the Sequoias/Red Woods.  I'm not sure.  I've seen Sequoias and now I've seen Kauris and there's no question which ones taller, but all in all the Kauri is an impressive tree and if you've see Avatar recently, you can't help but have a bit of a special feel for them.  Plus I hear they make great lumber...just kidding (but they do).
Shortly after leaving this incredible forest in the very north of New Zealand, we began our journey south.  The plan was to turn things over to the capable hands of our GPS to guide us through Auckland and into Coromandel.  As you can see in our pictures however our Garmin doesn't always know the best route.  We ended up traveling about 50 miles into the middle of no where just to save a tenth of a mile according to the map.  Brutally this was at the expense of all of our senses as the Garmin led us over some harrowing pitches and turns on a gravel road.  Not cool, Garmin.  Not cool...
At this point Vaughn "spit the dummy" a couple of times (google it) and Molly just about divorced me, but we all settled back into our grooves in time.  And after an exhausting day of driving, we have actually made it to the Bay of Plenty.  Our plan is to totally relax on the beach for the next day or two and then head towards Wellington.  We are going to trace the east coast on the way down and then head up the west coast on our return so that we can explore New Plymouth.
So far I have to say that without a doubt the most impressive thing about New Zealand is the variety.  We had a 20 min period today where we went from midwest style farmland/cattle grazing to ridiculously lush canyon walls to drop dead gorgeous coastline.  I have never seen such dramatic changes in scenery before in my life.  I don't really know how to describe them.  We try to take pictures but it seems like by the time you've pick your jaw off the floor to find the camera you're in a different area all together again.  If you get the chance to see this place for yourself, do it.  You won't regret it.
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Comments

Annelle Barolak on

I love the updates keep them coming!!!

ruth and john on

Yup, sounds to me like you're really settling into the Kiwi groove now... It definitely takes a few days to actually get the hang of the place combined with getting some semblance of sleep -- and with a one-year-old!!! We are SO impressed! Your photos are amazing -- I love seeing NZ through your eyes. And as far as the ridiculously beautiful scenery variety is concerned, guys, you ain't seen NOTHIN' yet!! Have a blast -- it sounds like you know just how to do that!

Mike on

Reading you well. Keep on truckin' Wittig mobile. . .It sounds like Mr. Toad's Wild Ride meets Winnebago Warrior. Poor little Vaugn. . . Crackin' a fruity.

Have fun guys.

Pants on

OMG....you're not coming back are you? Your pictures are amazing....I am waiting for the one of the RV, with Molly wearing pink rollers, holding a beer can and a cigarette in a KOA......How is RV life? Keep having fun for all of us voyeurs of your voyage.

Matt Stahlman on

We're getting them and it is cool. I'm never going to take a vacation again, just sit around and watch everyone else do it. This new technology is great.

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