new zealand 
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copyright 1998, james waldron design,  
all rights reserved

New Zealand:
Stories and images 
by Jim Waldron
My first stop. Fear of failure, but lots to experience too. 


Thoughts from a new world traveller
Yeah, it's some travel journal entries 
First Days Gone  - A rookie leaves home 
Horizontal Rain - Learning not to vomit underwater 
Greetings from the Shoeless - Crime folows me from NYC 
The land of smelly mud - Bus rides and volcanic activity


Some favorites

See them all at once
Look at thumbnails of all the photographs from this country. 
Each picture was made with the Agfa ePhoto 1280 digital camera. 

Auckland is the largest city in New Zealand and spreads out form the seaport and city center out over the surrounding hills. My first experiments with my ePhoto camera led me around the city taking in the sights. 

Auckland Greenhouse
Auckland Bench
Auckland blue doors
Auckland Stone Beauties

Kelly Tarlton's Underwater Experience, Auckland
Kelly Tarlton was a groundbreaking undersea explorer on the level of Cousteau. After 20 or so years of planning, Kelly opened the Underwater Experience in Auckland with the goal of recreating Scuba-diving for anyone woh came to visit. He believed that most aquariums didn't give the visitors the feeling of being in the sea. To achieve his goals he dreamed of transparent tubes directly through the huge aquarium tanks. Since no one had ever tried this he had to build it himself. The work paid off. Wallking through the pedestrian walkways with sharks, rays, and uncountable numbers of sea life floating around you in 270 degrees abouve your head is truly wonderful. Kelly died in the 1980's but he is still a very reverred person throughout New Zealand. 
Kelly Tarlton Underwater tunnels
Shark 1
Shark 2
King Penguin

Paihia is a seaside town three hours north of Auckland on the north island of New Zealand. When the country was colonized by England Paihia, and the nearby towns of Waitangi and Russell played important roles in the relationships between the local Maori culture and the interloping Westerners. 

Today, Paihia is a summer destination noted for it's fishing, sailing, and scuba-diving. The economy is driven by tourism, and to a lesser extent by fishing. Arriving from New York city I was especially surprised by the friendlyness of the locals. Everyone says hello and is more than willing to help you with anything from the best places to eat to helping you get a local doctor. 

This was the first serious amount of time I spent with the ePhoto 1280. I had lots of fun using the LCD to compose the photographs, and I was inspired by the light and openness of the land. I'd go out at 4pm and walk around town enjoying looking at the lines and colors. Lots different than New York City. 

50 Sky
25 Arrows
Paihia Tree and Light
Paihia Tree and Light 2
Building and Sky
Danni in window
Dive Deck
Pahia Dive Staff
Fire Reel
Strand 1
Strand 2

Waitangi Reserve, Paihia
The Waitangi Reserve, a few kilometers north of Paihia, was designated in the 1930s to commerorate the siging of the Waitangi Treaty. This treaty was an agreement between all the chiefs of New Zealand's Northern Maori tribes, and the United Kingdom. The Maoris accepted Englands protection, while being assured of maintaining their local rule. The treaty also halted, for several years at least, conflict between the English immigrants and the indiginous people. 

The reserve preserves both the house where the treaty was signed, and several Maori buildings, war canoes, and artifacts in the museum. Adjacent to the reserve is a 7 kilometer walkway through the local mangrove, an important natural resource for the local fishery and bird population. 

Waitangi ferns
Stone and Grass
Mangrove Walk 2
Mangrove Walk 3
Maori War Canoe
Waitangi Face 1
Waitangi Face 2

When Western shippers discovered New Zealand Russell was the first major port in the North Island. Whalers, traders, and the like based their operations in Russell, which became a very busy port. Eventually, the town became known as, "The Hellhole of the Pacific" due to the preponderance of visiting sailors to indulge in recreational activities that broke many of the ten commandments. 

Russell today is a sleepy port town, and popular destination with sailing craft from around the world. My impression of the town was heavily influenced by the hundreds of boats. Still working with abstracts, the different craft provided plenty of subject matter. 

Bay of Islands
Blue Tables
Funnel 1
Funnel 2
Funnel 3
Old Boat
Russell Police Station
Long Beach Shells

Rotorura, when you say the name of this Nort Island town around New Zealand, locals faces scrunch up and they make the universal expression of having experienced something smelly. In fact, Rotorura is the land of smelly mud. An active volcanic reigon, Rotorura is dotted with innumerable vents spewing sulphuric gas, boiling water and interesting hisses and spurts. But those same aspects also make the area fun. You can trek, drive, boat or fly to active and dormant volcanos, dip yourself in hot springs, or shower in thermally-heated water at the local hotels and guest houses. So once you get used the the smell there's lots to do. 

Rotorura is also host to a number of Maori activities. Perhaps a little touristy, but home to lots of history, the Maori population is happy to introduce tourists and local alike to dance, culture, food and war rituals. 

Read, The land of smelly mud - Bus rides and volcanic activity 


Mount Tarawera
Just outside Rotorura is the dormant volcano Tarawera. Just a smoking mountain until 100 years ago, Tarawera exploded along a 25 kilometer ridge in just over three hours, throwing millions of cubic yards of basalt into the air and creating a mammoth gorge where the mountain once peaked. 

Volcano Scree abstract

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new zealand 
trans-mongolian railway 
united states
© (1998) James Waldron Design -- Waldron@interport.net