Tuesday, December 23, 2008

One Tree Hill, New Zealand

One Tree Hill (or Maungakiekie in Māori) is a 182 metre volcanic peak located in Auckland, New Zealand. It is an important memorial place for both Māori and other New Zealanders. The suburb around the base of the hill is also called One Tree Hill.

The hill's scoria cones erupted 20,000 - 30,000 years ago, creating lava flows that covered an area of 20 square kilometres, mostly towards Onehunga, making it the largest (in terms of area covered) of the Auckland volcanic field. The summit provides views across the Auckland area, and allows visitors to see both of Auckland's harbours.
Due to the use of the hilltop as a nightly party stop for boy racers and other (often drunk) groups of youths, it was decided in 2008 to close off the road access to the summit at night. While walking up to the hilltop will still be possible at night, it is hoped that this move will reduce vandalism. The police intend to continue monitoring the locality after hours


The monument and the one tree were one of Auckland's most obvious landmark. However, the One tree Hill has become None tree Hill. Tourists often ask this question ,"Why is it called One Tree Hill, when there is no tree?"

Until 2000, a radiata pine tree stood next to the obelisk. This tree (one of two pines) had been planted to replace a sacred Māori Totara tree, the tree which had given Maungakiekie its English name. This totara had been cut down by a white settler in 1852 for firewood.

However, in the early 1960s during a jamboree, a group of overseas Boy Scouts cut down one of the two newer pines. The remaining tree was later attacked twice with chainsaws by Māori protesters (partly because it was not a native New Zealand species and thus considered an insult). The first attack happened on 28 October 1994, the anniversary of the 1835 Declaration of Independence.[2] A second attack on the 5th of October 2000[3] left the tree unable to recover and so it was removed due to the risk of it dying and falling down.


No comments: