November 22, 2023 The End of the Roads-Coromandel Part 2 (Day 56)

We woke to a muted sunrise looking out over Colville Bay and Hauraki Gulf.

A beautiful pink sunrise.

We got the binoculars out to view the islands and as the sun broke through the clouds we discovered that we could see the SkyTower in Auckland! It is in the distance as you look straight through the gap between the two islands in the center of the photo! We enjoyed breakfast on the deck and packed up to drive north to the end of the road at Port Jackson.

A lot of the drive was along the waterfront with huge Pohutuwaka trees growing along the beach. Several were in bloom with crimson puffs of blossoms! (Not visible in this photo though) You can see the road winding along the distant bluffs.

At Port Jackson (just a few farmsteads) we found that the road continued another 7km to Fletcher Bay, so of course we went!

Approaching Fletcher Bay from the single lane winding road over the hills! Square Top Island sits off the point.

There is a DOC (Dept. of Conservation) campground, and a welcome rest to stretch our legs. A storm damaged concrete building sits at the edge of the beach, built for what use I don’t know.

A vantage point for a view of the beach.

Walking the beach was relaxing. I even found beach glass.

We returned along the winding road, admiring the views and avoiding the campers and cars coming towards us.

A wide spot to stop with fantastic views!

We returned almost to Colville (where we got coffees on our way out to the end of the road) and took the Port Charles road to traverse the peninsula to the end of the road at Port Charles. We ascended the Moehau Range (avoiding the grader, roller and water truck that were working on the road) and stopped to overlook the forest at the summit.

The Kiwi Lookout at the summit. It is apparently “one of the best places to hear kiwi in NZ” according to the signage. You have to be there at night though!

Again, we went a few km past Port Charles to a lovely beach on Port Charles Bay.We climbed back over the mountain(?)range and returned to the town of Coromandel, past the Driving Creek Railway! What a curvy ascent & descent, rivals anything we’ve done in the US! We found a boat yard and Robert rigged up a hose to spray off as much of the mud and gravel from the car as we could! We then traveled the 45 km to our B&B for the night in Whitianga where we grilled some veggies and fish we picked up at the grocery in town.

Another beautiful sunset!

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