Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Shakespear Regional Park 18 Jan 2014

A beautiful weekend for a walk, so we headed a little north to Shakespear Regional Park.  Originally settled by the Maori, then the Shakepear's who had a sheep farm.  This was a beautiful walk that started on the beach and circled the headland of the Whangaparaoa penninsula.  We saw Pukeko's, native NZ birds that make chickens look like rocket scientists and California quail - the males have "ludicrous" top knots.  Baby quail are so tiny they looked like leaves blowing across the path.  As they rustled in the tall grass next to the trail, I was again reminded of "Jurassic Park" as the velociraptors (I think) stalked their prey.  Of course I have no pictures of these birds.  The quail were too fast, and was too tired by the time I figured out what the Pukekos were.  The trail itself was more like a walk thru the pasture land, lots of hills and sheep. The fences have sheep proof grates (like for cows), regular vehicle gates and sheep-proof gates.  We are getting better, but still have a long way to go before we can consider ourselves fit.  The other thing I forgot to get a picture of was the PPF (Predator Proof fence).  It keeps out all the bad transplants - rats, possums, rabbits, stoats, mice and cats.  They are hoping the Kiwi will return to this park.  In between the grazing fields they have replanted native trees and grasses.  After our hike we drove down to Gulf Harbor Marina to check it out. Even though we are exposed here at Bayswater, we still like the location the best.  Enjoy the pictures:

 Oh did I mention the Park is bordered by a military area?  I loved the signs and the fact that we didn't have to sign a waiver to get this close.  The bottom of the first sign says "Do not touch any military debris, It may explode and kill you".  Really?  I just love this place!!!

 You can see the fence for the military land just past the signs.

 The view from the lookout - looking back towards Te Haruhi Bay where we started from.  The red roof on the middle left is the Shakespeare homestead.

 And here is one of the many sheep.  You can see the track goes through their pasture.


 Looking north.  I love the way the water looks at low tide.
 Looking south.  Great day for sailing.  This was Pink beach - I guess it sort of looks pink - if you squint and look thru your polarized sunglasses.  :)  More Kiwi humor?
 A sheep proof gate that even if you left unlatched the sheep can't get thru.
 Looking down on Te Haruhi Bay.   I love the trees on the ridge line.  If you enlarge the picture you can see that they are almost perfect.
Auckland - far left
Takapuna  - center

The beach at Te Haruhi Bay with the cool trees from above.  Okay I looked them up - they are Norfolk Island Pines (araucaria heterophylla). 

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