Visited on January 28 2013
It’s gone by the names: Otara Hill, Te Puke o Taramainuku, Mary Gray and Smales Mountain but call it what you want; it doesn’t really exist anymore 😦 This is one of the sacrificed ones. Sacrificed for scoria. Sacrificed for land. Sacrificed for progress, businesses and ultimately, the people of Auckland.
We started our walk from the part of Sir William Ave not visible on the above picture. We entered from the North and turned left onto Lady Ruby Drive. As far as I was concerned this was just going to be a simple walk for the sake of getting some exercise. I had no hopes of photographing anything of interest. It is, after all, an area of business. This road sign was the first thing of note we came across.
Next we came across a plot of land for sale. In the far distance you can see the only remaining piece of the tuff ring that once surrounded a 500 metre explosion crater.
We continued on Lady Ruby Drive until we came to Barmac Place and I was in two minds whether to go in… But we did, if only to get to the closest point to where the largest 60 metre high scoria cone once stood. We noticed quite a few rows of rocks around the place. Almost every business had a token rock.
These concretions provided an unusual backdrop to the donuts in the cul-de-sac.
I got a surprise when we came across this…
It kinda takes some of the mystery away. As a child I assumed the club premises were wonderful -filled with books, tree huts, story tellers, cartoon characters, giant cushions and fun for all, much like Mr Willy Wonka’s Chocolate factory. I must admit I was a little bit disappointed. Were you ever lucky enough to be part of The Lucky Book Club? I was. I got one book when I was 8 years old and thought it was wonderfully special.
Incidentally, the ring road we walked around composed of both Sir William Ave and Lady Ruby Drive was named after this man and his wife. Which is fitting as it was his company that quarried and carted away this volcano. Upon further reading I see it’s not all bad; he might’ve levelled a volcano but he certainly gave back to his Auckland community in many other ways.