Fotoeins Friday: Crossing New Zealand’s Cook Strait (Raukawa)
14 July 2012.
It’s a cold wet winter morning in mid-July, and I’m on New Zealand’s Interislander ferry from Wellington on the North Island to Picton on the South Island. With the seasonal weather, visibility and skies are limited with low-lying stratus cloud creating some showers, mist, and fog. Fortunately, light winds create only small chop on the water, sun rays occasionally break through the grey canopy, and some geographical features begin to appear.
We bid goodbye to the North Island with this sighting of Sinclair Head, known formerly as the Māori settlement Te Rimurapa (giant bull kelp). The trailhead is faintly visible at right leading to Te Kopahou (“bent or folded feather”), whose 485-metre (1591 feet) summit is buried in cloud in this picture. The end of the ridge running as a cliff down Rimurapa is known as Taumata Patiti Pa. The strip of land jutting out to the left and into the water is Tongue Point.
Cook Strait is named after England’s famous circumnavigator Captain James Cook, but the strait’s name in Maori is “Te Moana Raukawa” (also this). This latter name may be a shortened version of “rau-kawakawa” for the leaves (rau) of the kawakawa plant used to make makeshift visors to prevent voyagers crossing the strait from unintentionally seeing islands and rocks considered too sacred to view.
• “The Land of Tara …,” by Elsdon Best (1919), courtesy of Wellington City Libraries
• NZ History
• Rimupara – Maori sites, Te Whanganui a Tara
• Te Ara – Encyclopedia of New Zealand
• “History of Māori of Nelson and Marlborough“, p. 41, Hilary Mitchell and Maui John Mitchell, Huia Publishers (2004)
The Māori names for the two largest islands of New Zealand (Aotearoa) are:
• Te Ika a Māui (Maui’s fish) for the North Island, and
• Te Wai Pounamu (waters of greenstone) for the South Island. An alternative name is Te Waka a Aoraki (Aoraki’s canoe).
During my year-long RTW, I made this photo on 14 July 2012 with the Canon 450D, 18-55 kit-lens, and the following settings: 1/40-sec, f/8, ISO200, and 33mm focal length (53mm full-frame equivalent). This post appears on Fotoeins Fotografie at fotoeins.com as http://wp.me/p1BIdT-9VC.
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