Our trip took us down the west coast of the Northern Penninsula. We felt that we had to stop along the way to see Kauri trees in situ, having spent so much time seeing them in swamps. These are huge, slow growing trees which were harvested aggressively by the British and others back in the day. They are now rare and reforestation efforts are underway. They are also being attacked by a withering disease, spread through soil transfer on shoes and the like. One of the national parks has been established to protect the trees and this was our stop on the way.
We arrived and took the short walk in to see the largest living Kauri in New Zealand, and it was impressive indeed. Pictures do not do justice to this 2,000 year old giant. Its huge, straight trunk thrust up above the rest of the forest and it was awe inspiring to see. It was also easy to understand why the trees were so tempting to shipbuilders, and to the Maori who used the trunks for canoes.
As we carried on driving, we drove through the forest where many of these trees still stand, some along the road side.