Slice Of Heaven
By Luke Kennedy |
06 June 2012
A lonely right breaks beneath a heavenly skyline at Piha’s Lion Rock. Pic: Uge@Aquabumps
Note: The following is an extract... For the full story get your hands on July Tracks.
… Thirty minutes after flying in to Auckland our crew is weaving its way over the Waitakere ranges through a fern-flanked artery of bitumen that feels like a portal to some better place, where worries subside and the world remembers what’s important. When I see a signpost which reads ‘Rainforest Express’ it seems like a cue to kick back and enjoy the green miles. “Tim Finn lives on that beach,” our guide Lenska proudly points out as we pass another road that disappears into a leafy abyss. I can’t help but wonder if he has his ‘leaky boat’ parked on a pier down there somewhere. Lenska also reveals that her former partner was an All-Black [representative of the national rugby team], which is pretty much the highest office any New Zealander can aspire to. Run as I might, it seems in NZ I am destined to find rugby around every corner.
When the dense foliage finally tapers away we are treated to a spectacular, elevated view of Lion Rock; an imposing sentinel of stone, which towers over Piha beach. We wind our way down to the shoreline where the black sand that is synonymous with the West Coast stretches towards an emerald ocean. In the failing but brilliant light of a west coast sunset, I make a dash across the charcoal canvas, board in hand, barrels on the mind. Before darkness swallows the majestic setting, I manage to ride a few waves – low tide runners, which twist into milky green tubes. By the time I make my way to shore a mind typically plagued by the clutter of modern inessentials has been liberated by the perfect marriage of mountains and sea …
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