Out the Front Door with Richard Hodder on the North Island of New Zealand
After settling into a new home and a new zone on the North Island of New Zealand, Richard Hodder steps out his front door to explore the surrounds in the Arrowood Lux WP. We all know it - every adventure big or small, starts with that first step out the front door.
Last week I moved house. Nestled in the bush with its very own wood-burner and view of the ocean, my new zone has an instant, distant feeling.
The rain had been falling for over a week which is pretty common for this time of year where the winter is trying to end and spring is not quite ready to start. Every now and then there are moments of golden light as the sun slotted itself into a gap between the horizon and the clouds.
I would find myself looking out the window at the raw and powerful ocean, wondering if tomorrow would be the day this weather would change and the clouded sky would make way for infinite blue.
There is really only so much of staying in one place I can take. After a few days of being dry and rugged up by the fire between stormy surfs, while the rain poured outside, I was itching to get out and explore the surrounds of my new home.
My girl popped out to visit and after a quick tour of the new abode, we decided to get out of the house and explore the neighbourhood. Like an agitated energizer bunny I jumped around excited to be heading out in the fresh air for finally, the rain had stopped.
We left the house with only a short walk in mind but no real plan of where we were going. It was bound to be the first of many ‘aimlessly wandering’ moments spent out the front of my place in the summer months ahead.
We made our way down the bush path to the beach, on a track that was pretty sloppy with pockets of mud and water. The stream was overflowing and a tree had presented itself as a bridge to the other side. The challenge of crossing without falling in seemed like a fun game but it didn’t last long before we worked out the risk of failure was far greater than the reward so we carried on down the path.
Walking out from the bush over the sand dunes and onto the beach it was hard to ignore the strong salty smell in the air after leaving the damp bush. There were areas of foam built up on the beach and as we walked, we kicked the foam at each other, watching it blow about aimlessly in the wind. Mini rivers poured down from the hills, breaking up the beach which tested our long jumping skills as we made our way towards the headland.
After walking through the mud, water and sand, it wasn’t too surprising that the wet rocks at the end of the beach added another obstacle underfoot. We took our time making our way around the headland and ended up back in a valley behind the beach where we heard the sound of water crashing down a rock face before we could see it.
This little waterfall often trickles down the rocks, but after all the recent rain it had a lot more energy than normal. We watched while the water cascaded down to a small cave and out to the ocean below. The rain started falling heavy, urging us to head home and after a quick lookout over the bay next to the waterfall we made a dash to shelter from the weather.
Everything soaked (including my camera) we lit the fire, our shoes having a front row view of the flames. After drying off, we sat and put our feet up with cups of hot tea as the wind and rain lashed at the corrugated roof in the darkness outside.
It feels like only a matter of time before the weather will clear and make way for warmer, drier days. I can’t help but wonder if I even want that yet after the peace and quiet at the beach, others warded off by the stormy weather, and coming home to cosy up by the fire, as shoes dry and wood crackles. Either way there will be plenty of opportunities to explore, all just out the front door.
We like to go everywhere, do everything. Keep up with us on our blog with stories of adventure, frills & wide-eyed wonder.
Post of the month
This one's for the mums. For the ones who instilled in us our keen sense of adventure. For the ones who let us wander and roam free. For the ones who showed us the magic that happens when zealous human spirits and mother-nature collide. We've pulled together a few ideas of how to say thanks, Mum!