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Taranaki Bights, Tasman Bay and Nearby Volcanoes, New Zealand

39.2S 174.0E

December 12th, 2011 Category: Lakes, Sediments, Volcanoes

New Zealand - November 25th, 2011

The South Taranaki Bight (middle of image) is the name given to the large bay which extends south and east from the south coast of Taranaki in New Zealand’s North Island. The North Taranaki Bight begins to the north of Cape Egmont (upper part of image).

Sediments can be seen lining the shores of both bights, and the active stratovolcano Mount Taranaki/Egmont can be seen on Cape Egmont. Further inland, Lake Taupo can be seen, with the active stratovolcano Mount Ruapehu to the south of it. The volcano is surrounded by a semi-circle of clouds, but is easily identified by its white, snow-capped peak.

Visible to the south, in the lower part of the image, is Tasman Bay, a large V-shaped bay at the north end of New Zealand’s South Island. Located in the centre of the island’s northern coast, it stretches along 120 km of coastline and is 70 km across at its widest point. It is an arm of the Tasman Sea, lying on the western approach to Cook Strait.

At Tasman Bay’s western extremity, the land around the bay is rough and densely forested. To the east, the land is also steep, with the westernmost points of sea-drowned valleys of the Marlborough Sounds. The land between these two extremes is more gently rolling, and also includes the coastal plains around the mouth of the Waimea River at the bay’s southernmost point.

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