A time and place for rāhui

Visitors to the West Coast bays of Aotea may have noticed they have company. Carved figures or pou appeared shortly after the discovery of exotic Caulerpa brachypus seaweed in island waters as symbols of the concern and care of Ngāti … Read More

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Artistic Expression

Port Chalmers-based, Ireland-born writer Majella Cullinane spent nine weeks in a one-room log cabin on Aotea as part of a writing sabbatical funded through an Auckland Museum Research Grant. The cabin belongs to her partner’s family, who acquired land on … Read More

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Passion Projects

I’m sitting on the veranda of what was once the villa homestead on a 400-acre farm running down to the beach at Mulberry Grove, near where the ferry arrives. Derek Bell bought it on a sub-divided acre in 2005, then … Read More

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Beautiful women – the Yoginis of Aotea

“My goodness, what a beautiful group of women,” says Anne Kernohan of the island’s Aotea Yoga Collective. When former island yoga teacher Julie Stansfield offered to sell her practice just over a year ago, six yoginis (female master yoga practitioners) … Read More

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How Barrier surfing became cool

Who was Great Barrier’s first surfer? Tryphena resident and retired island chemist Mike Gardiner can claim that title. He first visited the island in 1957 fresh out of school and camped in a cave near the mouth of Kaitoke River, … Read More

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Moving the middle ground

From the deck of the Aotea Track’s Mt Heale (Matāwhero) Hut the vista at twilight is awe-inspiring. It faces west towards Te Hauturu-o-Toi / Little Barrier Island. To the left is the distant glow of Auckland. Ecologically, Aotea Great Barrier … Read More

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Wonder

Recently I watched a near total eclipse of the moon. I watched it from the bush clearing that surrounds my house. The moon rose above the ridge about 9.30pm. There were faint wispy clouds in the night sky. Through binoculars … Read More

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Aotea Fiction

There’s a climactic scene in Don E McGregor’s latest book where a Barrier guerilla fighter and a wily Japanese soldier stalk each other in the rocky crags around Ruahine above Rosalie Bay. Defiant Great Barrier Islanders have played a crucial … Read More

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The history keepers

Tony Christiansen is the Chair of the Great Barrier Island Historical Research Group Incorporated, which has recently erected The History Hut in Ben Sanderson’s paddock next to the radio station in Claris. It serves as the archives for the island, … Read More

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Through the lens

As lockdown brought travel to and around the island to a halt I reached out to several island professional photographers, asking them if they would share a favourite image and about how Aotea has challenged and inspired their work. Hillary … Read More

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