We are going to Motutapu Island to hike around the middle section of the island, and also visit the eastern end of Rangitoto Island. Highlights include 2 contrasting conjoint twin islands that are far from identical, beaches, great views of Hauraki Gulf, old military sites, historic baches, farm animals, and some areas of native bush. For a short period, Rangitoto ferries are going to Islington Bay giving us a great opportunity to hike around Motutapu from there.
Duration: About 6 hours on the island, including stops.
Difficulty: 3 on our 1-5 scale for day hikes. Easier than average in most respects - on walking tracks, grassy farmland, and beaches, with not a lot of climbing (max elevation 121m), and no significant technical difficulties, but longer distance and duration than usual pushes the whole route up to a 3 (average). Will be easier if choose not to do some optional sidetracks (can rest and wait for group).
Weather update (10pm Wed): Metservice forecast for North Shore on Sunday: "Fine. Westerlies. (sun symbol)". This hike will go ahead if showers are forecast but may be postponed if more rain is likely.
- Pier 2 Ferry Terminal, near west side of Ferry Building, Quay Street, Downtown. We will gather somewhere visible near the ticket booth before getting on ferry.
- We will land at Islington Bay.
- 09:00 - Good time to meet at Pier 2, meet and greet
- 09:15 - Ferry departs Auckland
- 09:25 - Ferry departs Devonport
- 10:00 - Approx arrive at Islington Bay, introductions, start hike
- 16:00 - Ferry departs Islington Bay
- 16:45 - Approx return to Auckland
- NZ topo online map of hike area
Hike Route Description:
The exact route may be decided to some extent on the day, depending on time and how we are feeling. Starting from Islington Bay on Rangitoto, the route may be as follows (looping clockwise):
- Walk to Motutapu Island via Causeway.
- Walk Islington Bay Track via West Point, Pig Bay, to Administration Bay and probably continue on to Sandy Bay, and possibly further north if time permits.
- Head inland to Northern Junction and explore old military sites.
- Sidetrack down to Mullet Bay and back if time permits.
- Walk Rotary Centennial Walkway through bush and on road to Home Bay.
- Walk Motutapu Walkway via highest point back to Causeway.
- If time permits we can explore eastern parts of Rangitoto before get back on ferry at Islington Bay.
- lunch and drink
- clothing suitable for spring
- footwear suitable for walking tracks, farmland, and coast.
- sun and rain protection
- torch for exploring military sites
- plastic bags for muddy boots
- first-aid items
- money ($27 ferry return to Islington Bay)
(1) We have previously had a weekend trip to Motutapu (2 & 3 Apr 2011). This will be the first time we hike Islington Bay Track via West Point and the sidetrack to Mullet Bay. It will also be the first time we start from Islington Bay.
(2) Ferry leaves Auckland at 9:15am, and Devonport at 9:25am (if this suits you better). Best to arrive at least 15 minutes before ferry departs. Arriving early is good :-)
(3) We aim to hike as a group with stops for group to catch up at all track junctions, but there's no guarantee this will happen so prepare for this hike as best you can (study map, description, etc).
(4) We'll walk at a casual moderate pace that is comfortable for most people in the group, with stops at places of interest along the way, and one or two lunch stops, probably on beaches.
(5) Low tide is about 2:10pm.
(6) On this date we have options to ferry to Islington Bay or Home Bay and hike the same route from different starting points. Ferry to Islington Bay is a little cheaper, allows more time on islands, is a rarer opportunity, and this is where we are planning to start and finish.
- If you are interested to attend it will help if you: read all these details carefully; RSVP online soon, and update your RSVP later if you decide not to attend or anything you specified is no longer accurate.
- There are several RSVP questions about certainty of attending and meetin place. Answering these will help with planning, thanks :-)
Are you interested to attend? :-)