kereru or wood pigeon

December/January Road Trip – Part 1

tiri-blog-1Three weeks, 3500kms and I am really pleased to be home.  We had a great time, went to some amazing places and spent time with lots of family in all sorts of different places. There will be several blog posts about this road trip – there’s no way I could fit it all into one post, however they might be somewhat out of order.tiri-blog-3Our first stop was Taranaki where we visited the Len Lye Gallery. We arrived in time for one of the talks about the kinetic sculptures and it was great to hear the reasoning behind what they do – I really enjoyed that.  We had hoped to visit the opening of the festival of lights but alas the only parking we could find was about six blocks from the park and my feet are not up to that walk so we had to give it a miss.  Add to that, it rained the next morning and the motel bed was so hard neither of us got any sleep, we decided to cut that stop short and movetiri-blog-7Our second stop was in Ohaupo where we caught up with a bunch of friends for dinner.  It was a great night and staying at Jacana was just brilliant. We woke up to the sounds of birds calling right outside the window.  I heard warblers, cuckoos, tui, kingfishers, fantails and so many others.  I have some images from there that I will share in another post. I highly recommend this B & B if you are passing through the Waikato.  We also visited Sanctuary Mountain while we were in the area but the terrain was no good for my feet, so I have no images to share from there.  I should have picked up on the mountain bit in its name.tiri-blog-2

Our next stop (after a bit of time visiting family in Auckland) was Whangaparaoa where we stayed in a lovely motel for two nights and caught the ferry to Tiritiri Matangi Island for a day trip.  All of the images in this blog are from there.  I was so pleased with the images I got of the whiteheads, they came down so low it was great.  My kokako image is not the best but there was always a twig or something in the way.  He was a beautiful songster though – we really enjoyed listening to him.tiri-blog-4The hihi surprised me.  He was there one minute and gone the next.  He was also way too close for the lens I had on, so I just pushed the shutter button and hoped.  I am happy with the result even if it is not sharp all over.  We saw so many different birds on the island but I didn’t seem to get that many images. We had a lovely time however, unless my level of mobility improves it might just be my last trip there.tiri-blog-5

Our next stop was to the Muriwai Gannets which I have already posted one blog about.  Now that I have the time to process the images I might be able to find enough for a second post on them.  They really are amazing birds. Watch this space!  tiri-blog-6

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