Wellington Walks: Skyline Track to Mount Kaukau

I’m not going to lie: I’m out of shape. The twenty-six set of stairs it takes to get from the car parked onto the street to our flat, and I’m out of breath. Needless to say, this walk didn’t start out too well for me. The first 15 minutes of it, and I was instantly reminded to how I felt climbing : I was ready to quit. Though it wasn’t as grueling as that hike in British Columbia, the initial climb started out with stairs.

And plenty of them.

Hiking to the radio tower on Mount Kaukau.

I’m bringing back the tie-your-sweatshirt-around-your-waist-look.

Once we finished the 15 minutes of stair climbing through the trees, we made it to a clearing. Conveniently located to my right was a bench. How sad, I thought to myself. It has only been 15 minutes, and I already need to sit down. I blame it on the weather, as it was probably the hottest day so far since we’ve been in Wellington. I told Daniel I needed to sit as I felt weak.

He gave me some trail mix, and instantly felt better. We continued on up toward the radio tower on Mount Kaukau, which you can see in the photo above.

A gigantic cloud hanging over Wellington, New Zealand.

Dan promised the walk would get easier after the initial 15 minutes. Keeping his promise, the views from Mount Kaukau were quite stunning. Mount Kaukau, still unsure of its pronunciation (Mount Cow-Cow), is the highest point overlooking Wellington City and the harbor. Luckily for us, it was a clear enough day, except for the gigantic cloud sitting over Thorndon.

Overlooking downtown Wellington from Mount Kaukau.

Mount Kaukau compass.

A panoramic view from Mount Kaukau in New Zealand.

Handstand on top of Mount Kaukau in Wellington.

After taking in the view of the Wellington harbor, it was time to take a handstand break.

Eating a raspberry slice in New Zealand.

The one way Daniel bribes me to come along on these walks is with food. A New Zealand confectionery invention (but Daniel says they may exist in England) that I’ve enjoyed since living here is the slice. The slice comes in a variety of flavors, including a raspberry slice in which I was in the middle of devouring. It was the perfect treat.

The slice is another Kiwi invention.

At the summit of Mount Kaukau you don’t only see views of Wellington City and the harbor, but on the other side of the hills is the countryside with a wind farm.

A view of a windfarm from Mount Kaukau in Wellington, New Zealand.

Walking up a hill on Mount Kaukau.

It’s amazing to me how farm life and city life are so close to one another here.

A scenic view of Wellington New Zealand.

Now I usually enjoy my encounters with farm animals on our walks. That is as long as there is a fence between me and the animals. When Daniel and I housesat on the farm, there was an incident where the cows started to run after Daniel and it has made me hesitant to be around cows.

They often just stare at you, and it makes me uneasy. What are they thinking?!

A cow at Mount Kaukau in Wellington, New Zealand.

As we continued walking, we saw some kids in the distance waving their arms at us. (You can see them in the photo below.)  “What do they want? Do they need help or something?” I asked Daniel. He said he didn’t know, and that we should continue walking.

We started walking, but the kids kept waving to us. Daniel yelled over to them asking what the problem was. The kids yelled back, “They’re aggressive!” They, being the cows. Among the cows were two calves in which they may have been protecting. Scared of the possibly-aggressive cows, I told Daniel that I didn’t want to continue.

Gang of cows blocking the trail.

This was the day I let two 12-year-old boys put in my mind that if I were to walk by, the cows would run toward me and I would fall down the huge hill and die.

A Kiwi playground invention: the roktopus.

Fortunately this 12km (about 7 miles) walk has many entry and exit points along the way. We ended up cutting our walk short to go back home. Along the way we came across this strange kiwi contraption called the Roktopus. Having absolutely no idea how it worked, we sat on it for a few minutes until Dan pushed off with his legs.

Though we didn’t get to finish the entire walk, we ended on a good note: riding the Roktopus.


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