Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A Stack Of Rocks

Our arrival at pancake rocks was announced not by the iconic land formation, but instead by the numerous cars that filled the parking lots and lined the sides of the highway.  If it hadn't been for all the different rental stickers on the vehicles I could have sworn that we had just pulled into a Camper Van Rental lot.  
To be truthful my heart sunk a bit.  I knew that with so many other visitors I would never be able to fully appreciate the "sight" we were about to visit--I much prefer those private, silent moments with mother nature.
We made a quick call into to the tourist office and then headed over to the Pancake Rocks walkway.  A sealed track leads visitors through a brief section of rainforest and a forest of flax before reaching Dolomite point.  

Here visitors can observe--if they take time to slow down--limestone rocks that have been carved by the sea. The formations resemble stacks of pancakes--hence the name Pancake Rocks. 

In addition to sculpting the rocks, erosion has also left holes in the limestone.  The combination of a high tide and a heavy sea swell force the sea water through these holes, high into the air.  Unfortunately, even though we had arrived at high tide, the sea was calm so we didn't get to see the blow holes in action.

The crowds were a bit overwhelming, especially with everyone trying to get a great picture.  There was also a lot of disappointment because the blowholes were not providing a photo op.  In order to fully appreciate Pancake Rocks we did return just after sunrise the next morning.  The sea was still calm, but so was the trail and we were able to take our time and really enjoy our surroundings.  


  1. Hi Maya, the sea can create some interesting rock formations. Great views towards the ocean. I'm enjoying your posts about your NZ trip a lot. Thanks so much for sharing.

  2. This brings back some memories. Yep, we did stay here. I remember going on another walk/trek the opposite way to some cave. Don't remember much - just very dark and wet walk. Did you go to it?

  3. Hi Kathy, I am glad you are enjoying reading about NZ. It is taking me longer than I expected to write the trip up.

    Marta, we were at the cave that was right on the road. I am not fond of dark, wet places so we didn't go in very far. I think there may have been another cave in the area but we didn't visit it.