Shakespear Again, Pt. 1

My friends, it’s time for a drive.

Specifically, a drive up to Whangaparaoa and Shakespear Park. That’s right. Get ready for some sheep.

Longtime readers will recall that I’ve been to Shakespear several times, so much so that I wasn’t quite sure how to title a post about a place I’ve posted about so many times before! I’m going to try and make this post just a highlights reel, since I’ve documented the walking trails sufficiently by this point.

Hopefully this post isn’t too boring to those who have read the previous ones!

As always, I started out by going through Waterfall Grotto. Since I had my tripod with me, I tried a long exposure of the waterfall just for fun. Compare the below to the above and let me know what you think!

(This one is a 5-second exposure; anything more than that and it started to get pretty blown out.)

Walking up the hill to the lookout yields the usual lovely views :)

I like this one looking back at the town of Whangaparaoa.

Of course, Rangitoto.

Notice something weird in the left-hand part of the photo? Yeah, me too. Let’s Zoom and Enhance(tm) using the big lens:

Why, it’s the HMNZS Otago! She’s a patrol vessel in service to the Royal New Zealand Navy. It’s nice to have a big enough lens that “hey, what’s that boat?” questions can be answered pretty definitively :)

I love New Zealand and her rolling hills! What a beautiful country.

It’s Tiritiri Matangi! Every time I see that island it warms my heart. My overnight stay on Tiritiri last year is one of my fondest memories of the last time I was here.

Whangaparaoa Peninsula sticks out far enough into the gulf that the city is visible in the distance. This is Auckland at paltry 200mm zoom.

We can do better :)

At these distances, atmospheric refraction actually becomes an issue. It’s 27 km (16.7 miles) from the lookout to the Sky Tower, and 27 kilometers’ worth of water-laden air makes a difference.

Still cool looking though!

Looking out the other way…oops! Looks like it’s raining out over the gulf. Maybe I should start to hoof it around the track!

As I continued to walk, the clouds rolled in. Fortunately I managed to complete my hike and make it back to my car before the precipitation started.

I absolutely love Shakespear Park. I could come here every week. Once I decide to retire from my desk job I’d love to work as a conservation ranger in the NZ park system! But for now I need to take the path back home.

Don’t worry, though, we’re not done with Shakespear yet! Next post will be the obligatory Bird Photo post! See you then :)

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