Posts Tagged ‘Wairarapa’

October 13th and 14th: Southern Wairarapa

October 22, 2008

Last week we spent a couple days in the southern Wairarapa area, at the southern tip of the North Island. We visited Cape Palliser and Aorangi Forest Park, hiking into the Putangirua Pinnacles to check out the badlands structures along the riverbed. They were pretty impressive, though we still favor South Dakota’s version.

The sculpted badlands of the Putangirua Pinnacles.

The sculpted badlands of the Putangirua Pinnacles.

The area was teeming with sheep, some so overloaded with wool it looked like they might topple over, and some newly shorn and looking cold, naked, and startlingly clean. And lots of cute baby lambs. Also in the background of the picture below are some mountains on the South Island, possibly the Kaikouras.

Look at those faces. And Jonathan doesn't understand why I want to take one home.

Look at those faces. And Jonathan doesn't understand why I want to take one home. It could graze on the Mall.

In order to better see the South Island, Becky climbed on top of the car.

Becky is king of the world!

King of the world!

Cape Palliser is famous for its fur seal colony, one of the only mating sites in New Zealand. The road runs right along next to the water, so when we pulled over we were right in their backyard. Jonathan was a little terrified when one just a few feet away opened its mouth to make a noise we interpreted as either a cry of attack or a yawn. “Big teeth! Pointed right at us!”

These beasts are clearly fearsome.

These beasts are clearly fearsome.

We also climbed our way up to the Cape Palliser lighthouse on a long, rickety, steep staircase that felt like something out of Indiana Jones. (Okay, not quite, but only because there were no Nazis chasing us.)

they built the lighthouse *before* they built any access to this ledge. Crazy much?

Fun fact: they built the lighthouse *before* they built any access to this ledge. Crazy much?