What we're about

Welcome to Feet First … One of Auckland's longest running , and very popular walking and hiking groups..Founded in 2010 by Stephen F.

Events with lots of fresh air..and outdoor fun with other people..

We welcome all who like to walk in the wilderness , as we stop lots to rest and relax, take photos..and talk about what what we are seeing ..instead of rushing quickly from A to B, and to the end ...

Exercise is important however so is the strong social interaction between people and that's what's makes Feet First Events Interesting and fun..join us and find out ..we are a group that has been going for ten years..

Please note..No guests, dogs, children, or smokers, or those using a drone are welcome.

Please leave your responsibilities at home and come along and enjoy our amazing outdoor experiences...get some exercise...and make new friends .

Feet First is one of the longest running Meet Up Walking and Adventure Groups in Auckland establishing itself in 2010 by its Organiser and Main Walking Guide Stephen French, a long time resident of Auckland who has spent decades roaming and exploring the many parks, tracks and trails around Auckland and throughout New Zealand .

Along with Mike K and Boyd and other Event Leaders , we believe, Feet First, offers an unique walking experience in nature in Auckland, with lots of enthusiasm and good times to be had, by all the different members from many countries that come out with us..Here's hoping you do too !

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FEET FIRST is ideal for people wanting easy to medium graded guided Urban Walks and Hikes of around 4 to 6 hours on an event on a Saturday or a Sunday covering about 8 to 10km . Sometimes more ..sometimes less. We stop lots along the way to take in the views and relax..

We do a mixture of guided coast, bush and urban walks within a few hours drive of the CBD and sometimes a little further some weekends.. It is assumed you like nature, and photography and slowing down and looking around when walking on tracks or trails or at a local park or reserve in our urban areas... at a slower pace than a hiking group sometimes.. plus interacting socially with other members and enjoy taking photographs ...if not this group may not suit your needs as we are more than just walking quickly from A to B then C .

You will learn about the local history and environment and information on Auckland's history and wildlife and plants and trees .

We Carpool/ Share rides to get to our Events, and it's up to you to be proactive prior to an event you like, to arrange transportation or drive your own car, and its better to share your journey with another FF Member who contributes money towards petrol.

Our Events are graded in difficulty on a scale of 1-5 , and if you are an active regular Walker, or new to Auckland's outdoor activities, there will be a local or out of town trip that may interest you .

We ask for a $2 Gold coin donation on the event you attend to go towards the Meet Up Website.

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Unlike most other Meet Up Hiking Groups , on Feet First we also take the time, to slow down and look around ..while we are out walking in nature, to learn other things such as the names of native trees, the birds we hear, and often see, and some of pioneering history that Stephen likes to share.

This is where this group is different. So come prepared to Slow Down and Look Around ...

Sometimes we stop and listen to the sounds of nature too..for a few minutes, a special time to be still and practice mindfulness , to relax and not to use your camera, and just hear the wind in the trees, the drops of rain, or the many hundreds sounds that are often missed by lots of talking and rushing quickly through the forest ..

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It's up to you to come prepared with grippy shoes and carry everything in a small backpack with your lunch, water and snacks for the days hike.

Check out our previous photo's from our past Events to see the wide range of outdoor activities we do, camping, social night hikes, and recently ( 2017 March 18th ) we were filmed by a Japanese Film Crew making a documentary on What to Do when visiting Auckland, as part of a the Sky Network, Bravo TV, and they followed us through the bush, to spot some kauri trees ,and cross streams and we learned about other things nature has waiting for you too , to explore with us.

More things about what to wear, or bring along on our events, and carpooling, is listed on the Event listed normally a week before our hikes or urban walks so you have time to arrange transportation amongst each other.

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So join us, and walk yourself happy in and around Auckland with Feet First on a weekend that suits you!

Thanks for stopping by ..

Slow Down and Look Around next time you go walking outdoors..

Cheers,

Stephen F. ( Plus Mike , Boyd & Steve )

Feet First Organisers

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Upcoming events (5+)

Te Rau Puriri Park- South Head plus Hot Pools at Parakai

Te Rau Puriri Regional Park

Hello All.. 🔊Update - Half price deal for Hot Pools out on Treat Me is now available on again.. Check out this deal at TreatMe: From $3 for an Entry Pass to the Hot Pools & Waterslides https://treatme.co.nz/auckland/Activities/deal/from-dollar3-for-an-entry-pass-to-the-hot-pools-and-waterslides--0060I00000daS20QAE?utm_source=treatme&utm_medium=android Also available on discounted website Group On which has the same Half price deal for a limited time.. https://www.grouponnz.co.nz/deals/parakai-springs-15-auckland?utm_source=&utm_campaign=UserReferral_ma If not... Entry to the pools and Waterslides at full price is $26 on the day... 🌼🌼🌼🌼🌼🌼🌼 Here's another Social Event with Feet First, afternoon hiking and hot pools again...out in Auckland West. More details below. 😎🌼🏖🤙😉 After a very scenic drive this easy going loop walk starts at the Te Rau Puriri Regional Park on the way to South Head which overlooks, the Kaipara Harbour, NZ's biggest . This Event is mostly an Open Farm and Coastal Walking experience around 4 hours , so ideally suited for new members and those who want an easier day. A few ups and downs, but no gut busters, and with a side trip visit to the edge of the Kaipara Harbour, this makes for an interesting walk , with a stop over at the Hot Pools and Waterslides at Parakai on the way home. On our scale of difficulty of 1 to 5, this is a 2, so mostly a very easy day. Some hills up and down. About 90 minutes drive each way out in Auckland West near Hellensville. Meet and Greet is at 1pm. 🌼Please answer the RSVP question which determines your interest and participation.. 🌼This special event will be followed by a visit to the nearby Hot Indoor Thermal Pools and Waterslides at Parakai in Hellensville.. 🔊🔊Normally entry to these Hot Indoor Thermal Pools and outside Hugely Fun Water Slides is $26 for an Adult.. 🔊🔊 However - The Treat Me Website is offering for a Limited Time, HALF PRICE ENTRY..at $13.00 for an Adult. 🔊🔊😊Check out the deal here, ( Click on " View Latest Deals " when using hyper link below.. ) Use your credit card and take advantage for this Feet First Walking Event coming up.. 🔊🔊Carpooling- Transportation. Sort this out amongst each other prior to this event . List your mobile phone number and area where you live..Suggest you give your driver $20.00. Or maybe reduce if you're taking a full car. Petrol prices have gone up, so be aware of this. How Long - We will probably walk for about 4 hours, then spend the evening with each other in the Hot Pools from around 5.30pm when most of the family's with children have gone... We can do Socializing and have lots of fun on the very popular Outdoor Waterslides.. These are amazing..Huge tubes with water flowing through them..50m high..fun can be had laying down or sitting up on a foam pad. Zooming through several tight bends..then coming out the bottom into a pool..then repeating..Two levels of tubes available.. Heaps of FUN...🤙🤙 Main hot pools are inside. Tables and chairs available here to for anyone eating. # Food ...Hot Chips, and Ice Creams..and Milkshakes available at Parakai Pools, ( no alcohol) or we can eat afterwards nearby at various places in the Helensvile Township, a few minutes drive away from the Hot Pools. Then drive home is around 1 hour to the CBD via Highway 16 and the Motorway. Happy walking everyone 😊 Cheers Stephen F. Mob[masked]

Cornwallis Beach Explore & Ramble - 3 hrs

Cornwallis Beach

Hi Everyone.. Come out on this Sunday Explore and Ramble to walk along Cornwallis Beach which overlooks the Manakau Harbour ..located halfway between Titirangi and Huia , on the way out to Whatipu , just off Huia Rd, about an hour from Queen St. Cornwallis is a popular destination for people and families who enjoy exercise, picnics, walking the dog, and going fishing ( there is a 200m long wharf at the end of the beach) plus the Mclachlan Monument , a tribute built to honour a previous resident sits on a hill . http://slightlyintrepid.blogspot.com/2010/03/mclachlans-gift.html?m=1 This is a very easy going fun adventure walk of around 3 hours with views out over the Manakau Harbour and over to Awhitu..Virtually no hills, except a 10mins basic climb up to the monument.. 🔊So only come along if you're interested in beach walking at a slower pace, looking for crabs under rocks, taking pictures and relaxing with other Feet First members . Low tide is at 9.30am..So swimming opportunities will be off the wharf if you're keen. We'll also check out two short trails to honour the dead, at the Orpheus Graves Walk, NZ'S biggest marine tragedy ever, with the loss of 189 lives in the late 1800s on the nearby Manakau Bar. More details on the day. https://www.theswimguide.org/beach/5882?set_language=en Cornwallis Beach Pine Ave, Cornwallis, Auckland 0604 https://g.co/kgs/z3ssCA Difficulty - On our scale of difficulty this is mostly a 2 out of 5 ..Could be some slippery rocks on the beach . 🌴When - Sunday September 22nd . 🌴Meet and Greet is 10.30am . 🌴Finished by around 3pm, with the opportunity to visit the Huia Cafe a bit further along Huia Rd, or simply go home. 🔊Where Meeting- Carpark at the end of Pine Ave, off Huia Rd. 🌴Carpooling - Organize this amongst yourselves and other members. Suggest $10 per person in the car . Bring your lunch, snacks and water etc, and a sense of adventure and be prepared for an easy going fun beach walk.. Opportunity for some great outdoor photography. Hope you can join us on this Sunday coastal walk at Cornwallis Beach. Kind regards Stephen F. Feet First Walking Guide. Mob[masked]

Urban Night Walk. Western Springs- Grey Lynn Loop - Zoo Sounds

Western Springs Garden Community Hall

Ever heard the lions and elephants at the Auckland Zoo roar at night ? Join us on another Feet First Wednesday Urban Night Walk Adventure and get ready for some unusual sounds in the night, as we walk around Western Springs Park and Big Lake , and the surrounding streets, getting some mid week exercise..and get up close and personal to the Zoo, where you will hear the lions roar..and also see some ducks, geese, and the Lake.. When - Wednesday night - September 25th. Meet and Greet is 7.20pm with a 7.30pm start.. GPS - 956 Great North Rd. Western Springs- Community Hall Carpark on Left by Trees. Approximately 2 hours of walking. Mostly flat trails, with a few short hills, so a good level of stamina is required as we will walk slightly faster than we normally do. Be sure to bring a headlight...or hand held torch. Carry everything in a small backpack or just bring your rainjacket. Carpooling . Transportation..Organize this amongst yourselves. List your mobile number and area where you live..Give your driver some money..petrol is going up and up . Meanwhile, I look forward to seeing you at Western Springs Carpark. Happy Walking everyone..Roll on Summer.. Cheers Stephen F. Mob[masked]

Puhoi Valley Hike - Northshore - Easy Med- Followed by Dinner- Puhoi Rural Pub

🌱🌲🌳🍀☘🌿🌾🌴 Hello all. Please answer the RSVP question which determines your interest and participation.. And helps me with health and safety issues..Thanks. SF. 🌼🌼Join us for a 2pm Saturday afternoon starting easy going Hike of around 4 hours as we take a visit to the very scenic Puhoi Valley to hike in Dunns Bush on the North Shore... an area of bush with some big old trees that are over 1000 years old. Hidden from most of the public that seldom visit this area.....and true wilderness adventure...Feet First style.. 🌼🌼Then lets have an early dinner at the famous country Bohemian Puhoi Pub and Bistro nearby at around 6.30pm. Then it's a quick hours drive home for most .. 🔊🔊Nb..We do this Event several times a year, for its probably one of the best walks on the North Shore now most of the Waitakere Ranges are closed...So if you miss out, or have other things on..we'll repeat this popular event again before xmas. 🔊 The Puhoi delicious bistro pub offers tasty budget meals. Big burgers or fish and steak meals with salads etc ....and their quick service is amazing..so are the owners..and we have a group booking and place to eat sitting under a covered area outside under the grapevines ...Grab a beer and order your dinner inside to the left when you arrive, or go home ....the choice is yours...And a perfect way to end the weekend. Lots of free parking nearby on the streets. ⚠️About an hours drive north of Queens street. 🌼When- Saturday September 28th 🌼Meet and Greet is 2pm PM at J.Tolhopf Rd ..Puhoi. 🌼With a hike finish around 6pm. Followed by Dinner at the Puhoi Hotel and Bistro for those interested. 🔊Come earlier for Lunch, as I intend doing, at the Puhoi Cheese Cafe serving delicious food inside or outside in their gardens, then it's a 15 minute further drive to our meeting carpark on J. Tolhopf Rd. Then about 20 minutes drive back to the Pub for dinner..Yummy. Or simply drive home.. ⚠️ Background/ History of Puhoi..Bohemian early settlers came here over 150 years ago and made farms in this very rough part of rural Auckland that took many years of hard labour to establish. Many families left , but many generations remain, and on this hike, and the drive there and back, you'll understand why this particular area is so peaceful and beautiful, yet so very close to Auckland city, thanks now to the new tunnels and motorway that takes you almost to the country town of Puhoi. 🔊🔊🌼 Important Note for those Driving - Look for the turn off to the left off State Highway 1 as you come out of the tunnels to Puhoi.. 🤙👍☘Getting to Meeting place..Drive past the Puhoi pub..then stop at Puhoi Cheese Cafe to lunch and use toilets there..Or stop and sample the cheese, grab lunch or an ice cream or do some mindfulness by their lily pond.. 🔊Then continue along Ahuroa Rd for 15 minutes to our Meeting place and Carpark. 🔊Look for side road on left at top of hill , called J. Tolhopf Rd..Turn left here. Drive past houses and look for cars parked on left ..This is where our Feet First Hike begins and ends... See you at 2 PM for Meet and Greet.. No toilets here..plenty of Bush.. 🤙👍Note - This is an easy going social hike, walking in a loop..talking about the trees and enjoying the afternoon , and getting some exercise with the mix of walking in nature at a gentle pace.., with other feet first members interested in outdoor photography too. Hiking at a slower pace , so not suitable for those members in a rush to get back to Auckland . On our scale of fitness 1-5 - this is a 3 . There are some steep hills - up...and down...and some tracks are likely to be muddy so a hiking pole is very helpful ! The actual hike will start around 2.00pm till around 6pm - followed by dinner for those that wish at the famous nearby Puhoi Pub on the way home around 6.30 pm. See Puhoi Pub website for inspiration and pictures.. http://www.puhoipub.com/ Limited to about 50 Members... Our RSVP numbers often change on the day of the event depending on car pooling and other commitments.. This area of bush on the North Shore is really quite different to the Waitakere Ranges . This large bush reserve was donated by a family that farmed this area of Puhoi for many generations to help protect its big trees. The tracks are rough, so come with good grippy footwear, with a sense of adventure, as its easy to get lost and found again as we've done on two previous trips. The rewards are amazing - We'll be visiting three enormous kahikatea trees which is our tallest native forest tree, growing beyond 60m in some places, which isn't hard to believe when you see these monsters that have been spared from the axe man of 100 plus years ago. One is thought to be at least 900 years old as shown in first picture . Bring your camera, and take some time out to listen to the sounds of the bush as we explore the hinterland of Puhoi, which is about an hours drive north from Queen St. ⚠️⚠️⚠️ Carpooling - Arrange this amongst yourselves. List your request on line with your mobile number and area where you live. We suggest $15 be given to your driver to assist them with petrol costs. We may even see some spring lambs like last year ! Check out Puhoi Valley website for opening times and their lunch menu at http://www.puhoivalley.co.nz Come earlier if you want to park..Great toilets here too..None at our start.. About the area we walk in for those interested - 🌼🌼🌼🌼 More History - Dunns Bush is a fantastic find, and quite challenging for hikers with some steepish hills ,and was donated by the family that owned this land in 1994. A small grove of Kauri are here also and lots of native nikau and taraire trees . The Dunn family ( Arthur and Val having farmed the area for 36 years ) were somewhat concerned about the amount of farmland and native bush in the local area becoming destroyed and going into pineland, and came to realize that this area of bush could be destroyed for pines. Hence their decision to find a way to legally protect the native bush , gifting over 96 hectares of land to QEII National Trust, in the belief that, in time, the native bush would become an important asset for the future of all NZ citizens . For more on former Puhoi.. Read on..... German settlers had drifted east from Bavaria over several centuries and by the middle of the 19th century Bohemia was inhabited by a mixed population of Czechs and Germans. Puhoi’s settlers were ethnic Germans who spoke a dialect which was similar to the Bavarian dialect in southern Germany. General unrest in Bohemia was one reason why the settlers were prepared to leave their homeland, and also, settlers were being offered 40 acres of free land per adult with an additional 20 acres for every child over eighteen, an irresistible incentive. These settlers had no idea of what old growth NZ rain forest looked like, nor how isolated they would be and that there were no other villages nearby. The main road was a bridle path and the river could not be navigated. One wonders how they coped and how they survived the first six months, 150 years ago. Contact me..if you have any questions. Come prepared for an easy medium bush walk...at an easy going pace...and expect heaps of fun. ..😁😁 Regards - Stephen F Mob[masked]. Feet First Guided Hiking Organizer..

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