The upper Eastern Coastline of the North Island has always had a bit of a mystical allure to it. A minuscule amount of the population live there and small holiday/fishing villages sit dormant for much of the year. The only semi permanent place of residence is Gisborne which is a sleepy surf town (until the flotillas of 18 year olds show up for 4 days over New Years for the fabled proving ground that is R'n'V)
Im not quite sure why most of the country dismisses it for a no show for all but 4 days of the year. Perhaps its the locals pulling a fantastic "Nah its shit here mate" yarn, or maybe its simply too far for the majority of city dwelling humans to journey.
All I know is we scored both perfect weather and perfect waves in a sub tropical setting in what was supposed to be the heart of winter. Below are some snippets of our week long foray into the Narnia of NZ.
After a cold and wintery night at the first campground we could find we awoke (sore and a little damp), hurriedly pulled some more merino on and loaded the boards into the car.
As we piled into the Subaru and drove north we had our fingers crossed in anticipation as the forecast had told us it was going to be all time.
And as we pulled over the the last hill and scrambled out of the car to the lookout we were greeted with perfectly groomed lines maching there way into shore.
If your ever stuck in a rut, the East Coast locals are the friendliest your likely to encounter in little old NZ. Whether your stuck in the sand in your not quite 4x4 wagon or looking for a bit of sage advice on the upcoming pattern of the wind and the waves, asking a local never goes badly.
And if the waves do happen to be flat (which is rare) there is plenty to explore. We spent our down days in a variety of ways. Skating, bay hopping, searching for rockets and climbing large hills. If your imaginative the sparkling waters and rolling hills beckon for limitless activities
On our last couple of days before heading back to civilisation the forecast lined up for magic to happen. We weren't quite sure what to expect with tales of a back breaking wave making their way into our ears but we drove the winding roads to find this unnamed gem nonetheless.
As we arrived at what we thought might be the location of this mystical wave we watched in awe as a perfectly almond shaped barrel tore through the line up. And then another, and then another. We couldn't quite believe what we were seeing.
Needless to say we enjoyed our stay. Thoroughly surfed out and crispy skinned from the salt and the sun we packed our bags and began the long trip home. We'll be back soon though. Take a page from our book and go spend an extended amount of time in the far off places of New Zealand. The adventure will reward you, rain, snow or shine.