My sister left early this morning after a wonderful week for all of us. I wish we didn’t live so far apart. Yesterday we took her to Bethells beach on the west coast. I have visited most of the other west coast beaches – Piha, Muriwai, Karekare – but not Bethells. I like the west coast because of its wild ruggedness, lack of development, lush forests and towering cliffs.
The beach had the usual warning signs but with an additional one I haven’t seen anywhere else, DANGER QUICKSAND! We kept the kids on a tight leash after seeing that one.
More warnings: Large waves, strong currents, slippery rocks, unstable cliffs and tsunami evacuation zone. You might wonder why we went there. But it turns out Bethells beach has the best sand-castle-making sand.
The only brave souls in the water were surfers and there were lots of them. None of the warning signs or the icy waters were enough to deter the surfers, and they did not seem worried by the fatal shark attack on a neighbouring beach earlier this year.