Beach Tramping New Zealand

Beach Ginny

Ginny Stones wanders along an isolated beach track on Moturua Island. Photograph © Jeffrey Cardenas

New Zealand has more than 15,000 kilometers of coastline bordered by the Southern Ocean, the Tasman Sea, and the Pacific Ocean. James Cook mapped the entire coastline. My explorations have been more modest.

Flying Fish arrived in the Bay of Islands five months ago. Much of the time here was devoted to refitting and repairs. The tradesmen and services for ocean-going voyagers are excellent in Opua. Once the work was done, I took off my shoes and began wandering the many beachside tracks of the Bay of Islands.

These are not the sugar sand beaches of Polynesia shaded by coconut palms. New Zealand is recently born geologically. Evidence of volcanic activity, earthquakes, and geothermal areas can be seen throughout the landscape, especially along the shoreline. The beaches vary dramatically from cold fiords in the South Island to towering hot sand dunes in the north. For the most ambitious walkers the Te Araroa Trail is a 3,000 kilometer route of spectacular New Zealand landscapes featuring beaches and volcanoes, forests and cities. The walking track stretches from Cape Reinga on the North Island to Bluff on the South Island.

A person could spend a lifetime walking in New Zealand, but aboard Flying Fish I am beginning to feel the pull of time and tide. Winter is fast approaching. In the coming month as the cyclone season ends in the South Pacific, I will watch for a weather window that will provide safe passage for Flying Fish over the next horizon.

Click on individual images for high-resolution display

Below, a meditative ebb and flow along New Zealand’s Bay of Islands. Add a little volume and enjoy the sound of the shoreline.

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Text and Photography © Jeffrey Cardenas 2019

All rights reserved

20 thoughts on “Beach Tramping New Zealand

  1. Well written as always my brother, safe passage over the next horizon!

    *From:* Flying Fish [] *Sent:* Thursday, March 28, 2019 1:31 PM *To:* *Subject:* [New post] Beach Tramping New Zealand

    flyingfishsail posted: ” New Zealand has more than 15,000 kilometers of coastline bordered by the Southern Ocean, the Tasman Sea, and the Pacific Ocean. James Cook mapped the entire coastline. My explorations have been more modest. Flying Fish arrived in the Bay of Islands fiv”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh my goodness (said Shirley Temple)! What a beautiful description and photos to entice us to hike those trails. You are a Jolly Man 💕💕and intrepid sailor. Safe passage ✨ moon 🌙 day 🌊.
    God be with you. Just finished listening to Waiting for Snow in Havana by CarlosEarie on audible. Thought of your fathers family and the history behind Castro…..

    Liked by 1 person

    • This is an amazing part of the world, Renard. When I look at these maritime landscapes I get the sense that this is a newly created world. It is also a world where people have not yet become politically cynical and distanced from one another. I am thankful to have had these months in New Zealand.


  3. Beautiful. Love seeing Virginia on the sand. I feel like I am reading about a modern-day Ferdinand Magellan. Takes me back to my youth and how mesmerized I would be by the travels of these early explorers. What a feeling. God bless you and thanks for sharing. Elena

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for reading Elena. I’m no explorer; more like a wanderer. The next passage through Indonesia and Malaysia will be more remote. I am truly blessed and grateful every day to have this opportunity.


  4. Reading your installments is like reading National Geographic.I love it and look forward to the next episode of the Adventures of Jeff.Hope You don’t encounter any Cyclones after your dararture from NZ.SAFE SAILING

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Jeffrey, your global adventure is almost beyond belief, and certainly an inspiration for myself and others. Thank you for sharing your experience in beautiful photographs, and equally beautiful words.

    I so look forward to reading about your Indonesia/Malaysia experience.

    Be safe.


    Liked by 1 person

    • I have loved New Zealand, Bill, but the anticipation of seeing what’s next is causing sleepless nights. I cannot even imagine sailing into Fiji, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Borneo, Bali, Java, Sumatra, Phuket. Someone suggested just taking it one day at a time. Good advice…


  6. The important question of course is: How were the waves?! Good to read that your biomechanical upgrades are serving you well. As always, thank you for including us on your trip.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank YOU for following Herbert Benjamin Bridwell. If by biomechanics upgrades you refer to my fake knee, I would encourage anyone considering such a surgical replacement to avoid it at all costs. Surfing on a prosthetic joint doesn’t work so well. I’ll report in from Cloudbreak in Fiji.


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