About 15 min ferry ride from the Auckland waterfront is Rangitoto. I went there at 7:30 in the morning with this cool group of Americans in the photo below (+1 who was late). It is the largest and youngest volcano in the Auckland volcano field. The whole island is just a big dormant volcano. Auckland is covered with them. The name translates to "Bloody Sky" in Maori. It was a pretty short hike to the top, but it was a beautiful place with cool lava tubes to explore and a ton of interesting animals I've never seen before. If you notice a stark increase in the quality of these photos compared with previous entries, it is because Amy took them with her camera (she is the short Indian girl in the far right of the group photo). Photo credit to her.
|playing in the rocks|
|A good portion of the island is this very course volcanic scoria. looks so otherworldly|
|The kind of paths that we walked on for most of the upward portion of the hike|
|Cool native bird|
|very tiny lizard (not more than 2 inches head to tail)|
|Earwig roughly the size of that lizard found under a log|
|Cool lava tubes|
|Working together to take a nail out of a show with a knife and a spoon.|
|I had to go to the bottom. Standing in a volcano seems cool.|
|Hiding like Hobbits|
|Auckland from halfway to the island|
It was a really fun way to spend the morning and I think I'd like to go again sometime before I leave New Zealand. You can camp there for free, apparently.