Windward (East) Kohala, Hawaii

Just east of us lies a turning point in the landscape. Beyond it, the weather is wetter, the hillsides greener, and the coast is shaped differently. We set out to explore as much of the shore as we could, and immediately ran into high, steep cliffs. There are some tiny patches of beach and rocksContinue reading “Windward (East) Kohala, Hawaii”

Hawaii’s West Kohala coast

Hawaii has lots of shore but not much beach. If you recall that the island is made of volcanoes, you can understand why sand is uncommon. It has to wash in from somewhere else, or form from the waves grinding up rock–a slow process. Usually a “beach” is rocky shore with a place to swimContinue reading “Hawaii’s West Kohala coast”

The Devil’s Churn, Spouting Horn, Thor’s Well: Splashing our way south

About halfway down the Oregon coast, the beaches become fewer in number, the headlands become higher, and the offshore rocks more frequent. The highway clings to the headlands and crosses inlets and rivers on a series of bridges built in the 1920s and 30s. Driving along, we’re barely aware of how difficult it was toContinue reading “The Devil’s Churn, Spouting Horn, Thor’s Well: Splashing our way south”

The Great Ocean Road

Chatting with the man next to me at last week’s concert, I heard about the Surf Capital of Australia–Torquay. We were told about the wonderful beaches and gorgeous coastal drive. Much as we enjoy Melbourne’s gigantic bay, we had wanted to get out to the ocean, and were convinced. My new friend admitted he wasContinue reading “The Great Ocean Road”

Visiting Christchurch and the Banks Peninsula

My mental map of Christchurch is a triangle. The city center is near the top. The lower right corner is the Banks Peninsula, an ancient volcano that on the map looks like a huge pinwheel. The lower left corner is Lake Ellesmere, a very large, shallow lagoon that is barely connected to the sea throughContinue reading “Visiting Christchurch and the Banks Peninsula”

North Island Highlights

This week we moved from the North Island of New Zealand to the South. During the past month we walked on beaches, collected glass, shells, and driftwood, drank coffee at a wonderful local cafe, visited museums and wineries, strolled in parks and botanical gardens, climbed hills, and watched birds. Every day held vivid and memorableContinue reading “North Island Highlights”

Northland, New Zealand

We wanted to see the far north of New Zealand. We didn’t get to Cape Reinga, the tip of a long finger of land that points north from the rest of the island, but we got to the knuckles, around Doubtless Bay. One long sandy bay after another stretches along the north end of NewContinue reading “Northland, New Zealand”