28 January 2010

Conquering the Northern Walkway's Mt. Kaukau


Amazingly, our house is very near the track that leads to the highest point overlooking the Wellington harbour. It really is such a treat to be so near nature, we can just go when the weather permits and we don't have to do a lot of preparation.

I have always heard that the 360-degree view on top of Mt. Kaukau is breathtaking but haven't had the change to make the trek. A friend went with me halfway through the track but we decided to do a detour because we started quite late and it started to drizzle. Well, I had the opportunity to continue where I last left through an unexpected call from another friend who was keen on doing something interesting that Saturday afternoon. It was a glorious day, and soon we found ourselves with Jo-Lo strolling under a bright blue sky.

This entrance to the walkway starts with a canopied path, with the sun getting filtered through the foliage and creating a light greenish hue around us.
This walkway is well-maintained, with the path distinctly marked and where the trail goes uphill, you find yourself facing a sturdily-built stairway! How convenient is that?

A leisurely walk will indeed take you about an hour to reach the top.
The transmission tower is a familiar landmark on this mountain. We reached the top, and we didn't break into sweat! Even Jo-Lo, who would usually ask to be carried after around half an hour's walk, was able to complete the trek.

The view here is truly spectacular. You can see the Wellington waterfront, and to its right are rolling hills with gigantic wind turbines.

For the trek back, we decided to take the long route, going all the way to Old Coach Road which I went through with a friend months before.
We saw some cows grazing lazily. The scene reminded me of this commercial we have back in the Philippines about this brand of milk with the seal of approval of the New Zealand Dairy Board.
And this scene never fails to evoke memories of the movie ET, with the kids riding bikes around the neighborhood. And then I wonder if that same neighborhood was able to maintain that suburbia atmosphere, or it might have grown into a city as well...
Interestingly, Jo-Lo made the tramp all the way back to the house with only about 5 minutes' piggyback ride as interval. He sure did have fun, as did we. I hope that when I go back, I have a better camera to capture the beauty of the place.
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