49. Ash Hill

Visited 28 February 2015

Ash Hill truck park. We visited the green space by the Oak Road cul-de-sac

Ash Hill truck park. We visited the green space by the Oak Road cul-de-sac (Thanks Google Maps)

There’s a little irony behind the name of this volcano; first of all it’s not a hill, the swampy, mud-filled crater being about 30 metres below ground level. I usually talk with such passion about the volcanoes of Auckland but I’m pretty sure my friends wondered why I was taking them to a litter-filled industrial area. Much like Styaks Swamp, this is definitely one to just tick of the list. It’s not your Sunday afternoon picnic kinda deal.

It took me 5 seconds maximum to climb to the top of Ash Hill

It took me 5 seconds maximum to climb to the top of Ash Hill

View from the top :-)

View from the “top”

This shallow crater spent only a few decades as a recognised and recognisable volcano before it was flattened by industrialisation. It is thought that the site has no Maori name and was first called Ash Hill after the nearby Ash Road but, get this, the road wasn’t named for volcanic ash but originally for a row of ash trees growing there!

Slight grassy slope of

Slight grassy slope of Ash “Hill”

Truck park from the (top) of Ash Hill

Truck park from the “top” of Ash Hill

Signs of an explosive past are all around us -we just have to notice them. These volcanic rocks are on Ash Road

Signs of an explosive past are all around us -we just have to notice them. These volcanic rocks are on Ash Road itself

18. Te Pou Hawaiki

Visited on 18 May 2013

What can I say? There is no longer any volcanic cone here. Sadface. A century ago it only stood a measly 5 metres high anyway but what did it do to deserve the destruction that came it’s way (and sadly, the way of far too many other volcanic cones in the Auckland Volcanic Field)? At least there are still some remnants of it’s past life as a bona fide volcano (oh yes, did I forget to mention that after suffering the indecency of being reduced to nothing but a hole in the ground the hole is now plugged with a multi-level car parking structure?). See the boulders on the left of the photo below.

Enter the College of Education car park for this volcanic experience

Enter the College of Education car park for this volcanic experience

No Parking -volcanic rocks excepted

No Parking, volcanic rocks excepted

I suppose it is wise use of an otherwise awkward space

I suppose it is wise use of an otherwise awkward space