Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Amazing Volcano Explorer Weekend Part 2

Day #1

Part one of our Volcano Explorer Weekend was all about the preparation. We ended with Riley getting his Explorer pack and then we went to bed ready to get up early in the morning. See Part One HERE

So bright and early on Saturday morning Mr Riley was up and ready to start his adventure

Since we were starting out in Takanini (South Auckland) we decided that we would work our way north.
Did you know that there are 50 volcanoes in Auckland. FIFTY! Crazy huh! We knew that we weren't going to get around to all 50 and I only put 16 in the Journal.  Riley had decided that he definitely wanted to go to Mt Wellington, Mt Eden and One Tree Hill. I really wanted to get to Devonport to North Head and Mt Victoria, plus we had a visit to the Auckland Museums Volcano exhibit.

Volcano #1 - Panmure Basin

I had never been to Panmure Basin. It was a beautiful place. You could see really clearly on the rocks on the shore of the basin the way the lava flowed, it was really cool.

It's amazing when you go somewhere with a specific purpose in mind you see things in a completely different way. I don't think I would have noticed the lava flow rocks or stopped to read the information plaque had we not had Volcanoes on our mind.

Volcano #2 - Mt Wellington

I'd been to Mt Wellington once before but I didn't really remember what it was like. When we got there we saw a whole bunch of guys running around and up the mountain. We learnt that they were league players doing training. After watching the men run looking at the Mountain crater a bit we decided we would walk to the summit up the trail the guys had been running.

After about 1/4 the way up us adults (Mum, Aunty Val & I) were thinking how on earth did those guys run up here repeatedly!
It was worth the effort though because the view was magnificent! And we got to see the full size of the Panmure Basin from up there too.

Looking at Rangitoto from the top of Mt Wellington

Volcano #3 - One Tree Hill

I have been to Cornwall Park and One Tree Hill countless times. On our way up to the summit I made a split decision to go to the Cornwall Park Information Centre. I had never been in there and I was hoping to pick up a leaflet about One Tree Hill or Volcanoes or something we could put in our Journal. Who knew the treasure we would find!!

In the Information Centre we met a VERY helpful lady who showed us to the video room!! There we watched a short video about One Tree Hills volcanic explosion, the Maori Pa sites that were established there and the History of Cornwall Park. It was FASCINATING! I learnt so much about this area that I had no idea about.
They had an area which had lots of books and information about the Auckland Volcanoes which we thought was a Gold Mine! 

After exploring the visitors centre we headed up to the summit of One Tree Hill

After watching the video at the visitor centre and heading up to the top I could look around an see everything with different eyes. You can totally see where the kumara fields were. You can see where the Pa sites were. It was just awesome!! 

Abbey takes a picture of the view

Volcano #4 - Mt Eden

Mt Eden has got to be my favourite Auckland Volcano. I have spent loads of time at the top of Mt Eden with friends and it plays such a fantastic part in one of my favourite NZ books Under the Mountain by Maurice Gee

It was super windy at the top and there were a lot of people. The kids were getting a bit tired and hungry by this stage so we didn't stay up the top as long to explore.

Volcano #5 - Auckland Domain and The Museum

Who knew the Domain was a volcano? Not me! Sadly we didn't get to explore the Domain because as we were heading there for lunch it started raining. We ate our packed lunch in the car and then ran through the rain into the Museum.

We have been to the Museum lots, and we have also been in the Volcano exhibit lots but never with eyes as wide open to the Volcanoes as we did that day. I loved it, the kids learnt new things and going into the Volcano simulation house with a new knowledge was a whole new experience!

Auckland Volcanoes

 Volcano #6 - Mt Victoria

I had been to Devonport loads of times but never up Mt Victoria. I have seen loads of friends take photos of themselves on the toadstools up there so I was really looking forward to seeing what it was like.

Riley & Abbey really enjoyed the toadstools and so did the rest of us!

Mt Victoria was a Military Command Post and there are still remnants of this on the top of the mountain.

With fabulous views of Auckland city we spent quite a bit of time looking out across the water while the kids played on the Toadstools and rolled down the hill.

Look! It's Rangitoto

Volcano #7 - North Head

I think North Head was the kids favourite of the day - leaving the best 'til last!!

I love North Head too. The history of the tunnels and their purpose I find fascinating. We got out our torches and did some real exploring through some of the tunnels that are open.

Tired little (and big!) legs and grumbles starting to come out told us it was time to call it a day.

And what an AMAZING day it was!! Full of discovery and surprises and so much fun!!!

And there is no better way to end a fantastic day than with ice cream!!

Home we went to takeways for dinner and an early night for our next big adventure in the morning .....

going to RANGITOTO!!!!!!

to be continued ............


Cat said...

A-M-A-Z-I-N-G !! !! !!

LOVE that you did this .. .. ..

My Poppa was posted to Mt Victoria on the Home Front during WWII

Neetz said...

Awesomeness!!! What a fab time!! :) ((love the adults on the toadstools!!)) hehehe..

jacksta said...

Wow! You put so much thought in to this! What a fantastic idea and learning experience.


Leonie said...

What a fab adventure!