Owhiro Bay, New Zealand – December 26, 2016
The day after Christmas, Boxing Day was a beautiful day. There was plenty of sunshine and blue skies. It was a perfect day for our favorite drive; a trip around Miramar Peninsula. To get there, one drives toward the Wellington International Airport. However, instead of turning right to go to the airport, one turns to the left instead.
Nearly the entire 15 kilometers (9 miles) of the drive around the Miramar Peninsula is along the coast. The views of each bay and Wellington Harbour are each like postcards.
At Seatoun, the road leaves the coast, goes over a rise and then down to Breaker Bay. At the height of the rise, there is a trail; Benoit Trail. I decided to walk a little way up the trail so I could see Breaker Bay from the high point. I am happy I did. The views were spectacular. Since Leslie and Lorraine were waiting for me in the car, I hurried back and continued our drive.
Approaching Moa Point, one sees a sign warning of crossing penguins. The sign is in both English and Maori. Little blue penguins nest in the area. Based on what is in the news, the more significant danger to penguins is dogs. Frequently the newspaper features stories about penguins killed by dogs. The dogs are not feral; they have just gotten loose.
Another area of Moa Point parallels the flight path of the airport. That is our favorite beach to look for paua (abalone) shells. Especially after southerly storms, there are usually dozens of paua shells washed up on the beach. We collected several and began our drive back home.