Cockle Bay

Day 165, Friday 2 February 2018.

I rode to Cockle Bay today, a small beach on Tamaki Strait, with Beachlands visible across the water. Cockle Bay is a sandy beach with some shelly areas, with a line of pōhutukawa trees providing shade. The tide was out when I visited, leaving a large expanse of wet sand which apparently does have large numbers of cockles and other shellfish. However, taking shellfish between October and April is prohibited. I noticed a sign saying the water was of suitable quality for swimming, however it was not attractive at low tide and there were few people around.

There’s a walkway going north and south. On the north, halfway up the hill is a lookout point over the beach. On the south, the walkway follows a former defensive ditch which was part of the fortifications of Tuwakamana Pā.

At the northern end of the beach is a huge pōhutukawa tree, which marks the landing spot of Manawatere, an ancestor of the Ngāitai iwi. Beside it is a gun emplacement from the Second World War. You can walk around the coast to Shelly Beach at low tide.

A seawall is in the process of construction. It appears this area is under threat from king tides.

For a small beach, Cockle Bay has a lot going for it!

Distance travelled: 50 km. Total distance so far: 21,842 km

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