Ben, Jono and Max
As part of our blog, we have tried to capture some of the wonderful outdoor opportunities on our Waikato doorstep. Today’s edition of the #mondaycrew sees us go a bit further afield to climb the well known Mount Mauao, or Mount Maunganui as others know it as.
The car ride into the Bay of Plenty, still in the heart of Chiefs territory, was enhanced with a bit of car karaoke, washed down with some of Max’s mums tasty banana-choc chip muffins. Cheers Jan. Joining us on our intrepid journey was Alex ‘3.14lot’ King. If you can work out his middle name you’ll know that we were joined by a knowledgeable pilot, who was also able to give us valuable insight into the Maori legend and significance of this maunga. Mauao, as he explained, means ‘caught by the morning sun’. This was not the case for us as we were caught by the early afternoon torrential rainfall.
The patupaiarehe, or magical people talked about in the legend of Mauao, only work during the night meaning we were unable to summon the sun on our journey, or even get sent more suitable rain jackets for our quest. Shorts and hoodies it was. Our group of four still remained in high spirits, taking turns to do the classic primary school shoe- skid on the walkway over to the base of the Mount, until Jono fell over quite tragically and put an end to our reminiscent fun.
The early part of the climb was surrounded by lambs and sheep poo and at this point the rain wasn’t too heavy. A wide, well-maintained track paves the way up the mountain and makes for a lovely walk; RAIN, hail, or shine. A small Hop, skip and a jump and we were up the top, having conquered the many steps and windy paths of the track. With minimal visibility from the top, there would be no iconic insta pics today, but a few #mondaycrew trig selfies were taken to prove our soaked journey had actually taken place. On the way down we decided to come down the parkour way around pilot bay and it’s safe to say that stunts were on the menu. If you know anything about us you’d know these were some of the most cringeworthy, unadventurous stunts known to man. We had fun though. Ben and Jono topped off a wet, but enjoyable walk with a quick skinny dip in the moana and this was followed up by a lengthy hotpool visit.
Unfortunately today we weren’t able to make friends like on past trips mainly due to the fact that we were the only ones brave/stupid enough to hike on a stormy day. It may have also been because Ben peed in the hotpool, we’ll never know. In true #mondaycrew fashion we topped our adventure off with a delicious pie, some mexicali fresh and competitive game of monopoly back at Alex’s. Jono (is anybody surprised..?) took out top honours in a convincing display of business nouse and opportunism. What another top Monday in a beautiful part of the country, albeit with mediocre company. Jokes aside, getting out and making the most of the mount, despite the rain gave a sense of productivity on a dreary day and shows what can be done with a splash of #mondaycrew enthusiasm. We are loving having friends join us on our adventures and would love to have others contact us if you are interested in joining the #monday crew movement. Due to work commitments, it will likely become the #sundaycrew soon, making it easier for others to take part in our money-can’t-buy adventures.
Walking time: 1hr return Driving time from Hamilton: 1hr 30ish