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A Long Weekend in Mangawhai

After returning home from Great Barrier, life on the mainland is somewhat overwhelming and hard to get back to. To forget about it, we decided to rent a bach up north and on the Friday of a long weekend, we head north to a place called Mangawhai.

Every morning, we were waking up to the most intense red sky of a beautiful sunrise, streaming in through the kitchen. We would sit on the deck gazing upon the powerful sky and the rays of the sun colouring it as it surfaced from the water.

The first waves of the day would be caught at the Mangawhai bar…. Locally known to be a left hand bar break, but for us, the right hander on the bar was working in our favour each morning. I’d take off on a glassy right hander, starting with a bottom turn, then a stall, setting me up to hang high, gliding along a wave that goes on forever.

After our bar sessions, we return to the bach, pack a lunch, put the boards on the roof of Matts 1961 red Beetle and pile in, heading to Te Arai for the rest of the day. We perch on the dunes seeking out the best banks that we can surf for the rest of the afternoon. It has taken awhile for the warm water to filter down the east coast, but this weekend surely proved it had arrived. We ditch our spring suits and just head out in our bikinis. I paddle out over the clearest turquoise water, illuminated from the shimmering of the sun, looking down at the white sand meters beneath me. I look over at my friend and we both agree that we could easily be in the tropics.

Our days were filled of cooking ourselves in the sun, surfing and laughing. Sleep was not our main priority over this magical long weekend as our summer nights consisted of going to gigs at the local tavern and partying with mates till the early hours. But really, what else could we ask for?

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