Tag Archives: Eaves Bush

Kicking It Old-Growth in Eaves Bush

It’s probably true that a person can get jaded about anything.  I had been doing Auckland in every way I could think of for more than two years.  As beautiful as her parks and reserves are, it was getting hard to find a place that really blew me away.  Then I discovered Eaves Bush.

Old North Road entrance to Eaves Bush
Old North Road entrance to Eaves Bush

Formally known as Alice Eaves Scenic Reserve, this is 16 hectares of old-growth coastal kauri broadleaf forest.  It contains such other species as kahikatea, karaka, kōwhai, mataī, puriri, rewarewa, supplejack, taraire, and nīkau

Eaves Bush
Eaves Bush

Eaves Bush is located in Orewa, about a 30 minute drive from Auckland’s city center.

Below is the map from the info board at the entrance showing the tracks in the reserve.

Eaves Bush map
Eaves Bush map

The bush is impressive immediately upon entering the park.

Eaves Bush
Eaves Bush

I started by following the track to the old hollow kauri.

Old North Road to Kensington Park track
Old North Road to Kensington Park track

The old hollow kauri is about 800 years old.  It’s not very large for its age, apparently due to having endured storms, lightning, fire and at least one axe.

Old hollow kauri
Old hollow kauri

The distortion in the image above is due to the fact that it is a panorama shot vertically.  The boardwalk that keeps visitors off of the kauri’s roots kept me too close to get a good single picture of this big old tree.

I continued on past the old hollow kauri.  The bush kept on being stunning.

Old North Road to Kensington Park track
Old North Road to Kensington Park track

The track continues past the Kensington Park bridge, but it gets much muddier, and the bush gets a bit less interesting.  I walked on for maybe ten minutes before turning back.

Old North Road to Kensington Park track
Old North Road to Kensington Park track

I returned to the old hollow kauri and took the path up to the lookout.

Hollow kauri to lookout track
Hollow kauri to lookout track
Hollow kauri to lookout track
Hollow kauri to lookout track

The trees blocked any view from the lookout.  It’s sort of a shame, since Eaves Bush is very close to the Hibiscus Coast, and it would probably offer a pretty sweet view.  But I can understand a reluctance to cut on the trees in a reserve like this.

Lookout
Lookout

A walked a short distance up the track to Hillcrest Road to see if a view opened up, but it didn’t happen.

Lookout to Hillcrest Road track
Lookout to Hillcrest Road track

I walked the Loop track next.  The bush was similar to what you’ve seen so far, but with more kauri.  Then I took the track from the lookout back to Old North Road.

Somehow I realized that I had missed the pa site near Hillcrest Road, and decided to drive there.  The Hillcrest Road entrance is prominently marked.

Hillcrest Road entrance
Hillcrest Road entrance

It didn’t take long to reach a point on the path that I recognized from my short walk uphill toward Hillcrest Road from the lookout, but I didn’t see any signs for the pa.  I looked at the map again, and ventured into the bush near the entrance, but didn’t really see anything.  Some pa are easy to recognize as such, and some are not – this was one of the latter.

I found this map online, and realized that when I was exploring near the entrance, I was exploring Nukuhau Pa.  You can read more about it here.

Nukuhau Pa
Nukuhau Pa

Eaves Bush is small, but it’s pretty awesome.

Please enjoy the full gallery of 16 pictures below.  To view on imgur, click here.