Most weekends, weather permitting, we find somewhere to walk. It used to be that I would normally want to head for the forest or a rugged coastline, or over the hills at a regional park. These days, though, I find that walking absolutely anywhere is, well, just great! And this is because of my recently-acquired love affair with my fixed 50mm lens. I just aim, at anyone or anything, and click, on the move, from the hip, and even through the viewfinder. It makes the promise of a relatively ordinary afternoon turn into a series of unexpected events, of hits and highs and complete misses. One recent afternoon typified this, on a walk we have only just discovered, the section of coastal track linking Milford Beach to Takapuna. The North Shore Coastal Track runs from Long Bay, just down the road from where we live in Torbay, all the way to Devonport, a long haul that would take all day — maybe more. Having neither the time nor inclination for such a trek we randomly chose the Milford bit. It turned out be a fascinating choice, not least because of the magnificent houses that hug the rocky coastline. It must be disconcerting living in such homes, though, having endless streams of people gawping at you. The walk is best undertaken at low tide so the rocks and pools are exposed. Geologically, like most of Auckland, the area is volcanic in origin and it has shaped the coastline here in a unique manner. Just inland from the track lies Lake Pupuke — well, it’s a lake now but was once a volcano explosion crater. When it exploded the lava oozed out towards the sea and fossilized a forest, the unique remains of which you see today next to Takapuna Beach car park at low tide.

All Images  © 2012 Mark Meredith

Split level
Volcanic boulders abound on the walk, while Rangitoto volcano is an omnipresent reminder that underneath us lies the Auckland Volcanic Field, bubbling away . . .
The Takapuna fossilized forest. Lava from what is now Lake Pupuke flowed through a dense forest of small trees and left the stumps as lava moulds.
The coastal track hugging palatial properties in Takapuna. The tower is called The Sentinel, the tallest building on Auckland’s North Shore, where the views must be sensational.

Easy and flat, this bit.
This bit, on the other hand, is a bit of a clamber, especially at walkers’ rush hour, shown here
The “houseboat”
Ice cream eaters by the fossilised forest at Takapuna car park

Shellfish hunters
This heron spent ages walking up and down the railing of this smart Milford house, fascinated with its own reflection in the windows
Urban heron

Preparing the yacht on Milford Bach

2 thoughts on “Milford-Takapuna Coastal Track

  1. Hi Mark, congrats on getting the blog going, you will love wordpress if you don’t already!! Also well done on the 50mm lens, I remember us discussing this some time ago!!! I maintain more than ever that prime lenses are such a joy to shoot in the main because the force you to think. Keep posting, all the best, Jason

  2. Hi Jason — Well, thanks for the encouragement! It’s appreciated. Yes, WordPress is really cool, though it’s taken me quite a lot of time to get my head around it, and I am still very much learning my way around. Amazing technology, really. Yes, I never go anywhere without the 50mm. You are right, it does make you think, to make a picture. Thanks again!

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