Hikurangi Maunga 2012
If theirs one place on earth aside from Whangara that i could say I’ve had a profound connection to the past therefore inspiring me today, it would be Hikurangi Maunga. This was my second trip up, the first i did with my mum & her friends when i was about 10 & we went right to the top, the highest peak of the Maunga (mountain) to watch Tama-nui-te-ra rise in full glory. It took two days to complete spending a night in the hut located half way up, ending the road access. From there it’s nothing but shear climbing! Back then I didn’t understand the significance of the experience, i just remember it being long, cold & exhausting.
This time was the complete opposite. It was shared with the entire crew at Toihoukura (70+ including staff), which was really special because this is where my journey of discovery about my culture & identity began. I was also blessed to be able to bring along my husband & children to share this amazing experience as well. I/we saw & felt nothing but awe-inspiring beauty.
It took several 4×4, trailers & walking shifts to get us all safely to the half way point i mentioned before which is now home to the Maui Whakairo commissioned by Derek Lardelli & a small crew form Toihoukura in 1999 for the Millennium Dawn Ceremony. This was the main focus point of the trip – seeing these huge Pou (posts) standing tall; listening to the korero behind their journey, origins & feeling the wairua they shared amongst us all. It was a truly humbling experience, one i don’t think any of us will ever forget.