New Year’s Day 2011: Starting the Year on a Positive Foot

This morning we made the most of a cooler day, with cloudy shade, and set off on a local walk at Te Raekaikau Point: Te Ranga a Hiwi Track.

The last time we did this walk we hoped to find our way through the bush and come out at Princess Bay – but got completely lost and ended up retracing our steps (but it was a glorious day with the most stunning, clear blue skies).

Since then we’ve never gone further than the lookout at the top…

Charlotte & Sophie New Year's Day 2011

Recently we’d seen new signage at the start and end of the track – and hoped this meant a clearer pathway through the bush.

Wanting to start the New Year on a good footing we decided a family walk was just the activity we needed.

This time we were determined not to be beaten by the bush and find our way through!

We started off well, with Alice more than happy to take in the view from the backpack…

Dan and Alice New Year's Day 2011

The track was clear and not too overgrown.

The girls took their time, on the steep descents

And ran up, sure footed, on the inclines.

Charlotte & Sophie watching their footing

We could clearly see the track ahead, and

onward, our leaders, confidently strode.

Sophie leading the way with confidence

‘Wow, we sure are high!’ said Sophie.

Sophie so high!

She stopped, in awe, at the far reaching views.

To Lyall Bay

And then we reached the top, where seagulls flocked.

Our goal, in sight, but a pathway not.

To Island Bay

Cliff top

We took a call, from dear Grandad in Blighty,

A Happy New Year, with haggis aplenty.

We couldn’t talk long, for the bill and the wind,

And we needed, to find, a way off that cliff.

Windy soaring on the top

We trod on through, the heavy bush, with sights set

On the beach, far below, yet, out of reach.

Pushing through the bush

Beach below

This cursed track was not what we’d sought, as we’d

Set out with glee, at the thought of a walk.

Determined to find the way

Finding the path

And yet, it was perfect, a life lesson

We said, as the grumbles grew, with thorns too.

Emerging out of the bush

We talked of machetes, early settlers

And adventures. Even Harry Potter.

Then, at last, the gorse let us pass, with a

Sigh of relief, we cheered a victory.


This just goes to show a new sign can mislead,

With innocent walkers brought to their knees.

We made it!

A happy ending I am pleased to say,

Once scratches and scrapes had been soothed away.

Princess Bay

A beach in sight, and a break in the cloud,

Time to play, and feast, on this New Year’s Day.

Princess Bay beach

Princess Bay

And feast we did!

After a wonderful play at Princess Bay beach, as well as a stop at the playground on the way home, we baked up a storm and devoured far too many scrumptious cup-cakes!

New Year cupcakes

And all the sugar needed to be burned off before dinner…. so Dan took Charlotte & Sophie for an hour of boogie boarding in the sun, at Lyall Bay; whilst Alice and I soaked in the tub and prepared dinner.

A perfect first day for the New Year.

Happy 2011!