For a relatively small country, New Zealand seems to go big in a lot of ways. Take Northland, the northernmost region where I'm basing myself this week. Here, large is in charge.
The roughly 200 pound marlin they happened to be reeling in as I strolled the small, historic fishing town of Russell. The official highway of 90 Mile Beach on which speeding tour buses and passenger cars cruise the flat, vast coastline with sand under their wheels. The renowned, towering Kauri trees reaching up to the sky- some about 2000 years old with trunks 18 yards around. The oysters for dinner that were the size of my fully extended hand. All pretty impressive.
But perhaps most notable, the massive Te Paki sand dunes. Notable mostly for the calves-busting climb to the top of the steepest slope followed by a speeding body board ride to the bottom. With the panting and clawing through the sand you would have thought I was trekking the Sahara. The gratification after? Huge.
Here in Northland, I guess size matters.
Hei kona ra!
Te Paki sand dunes in the distance