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Posts tagged New Zealand

Great Barrier Island, New Zealand

36.2S 175.4E

December 23rd, 2011 Category: Mountains

New Zealand - December 22nd, 2011

This orthorectified image shows the Great Barrier Island, a large island of New Zealand, situated 100 km to the north-east of central Auckland in the outer Hauraki Gulf. With an area of 285 km2 it is the fourth-largest island of New Zealand’s main chain of islands, with its highest point, Mount Hobson, rising 621 m.

South of the island is the Colville Channel, one of three channels connecting the Hauraki Gulf with the Pacific Ocean to the northeast of Auckland, New Zealand. It lies between the southern end of Great Barrier Island and Cape Colville at the northern tip of the Coromandel Peninsula. The tiny Channel Island lies in the centre of the channel.

The Coromandel Peninsula (visible in the lower part of the full image) lies in the North Island of New Zealand. It is part of the Waikato Region and Thames-Coromandel District and extends 85 kilometres north from the western end of the Bay of Plenty, forming a natural barrier to protect the Hauraki Gulf and the Firth of Thames in the west from the Pacific Ocean to the east. At its broadest point, it is 40 kilometres wide.

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.

Glacial Lakes Near Southern Alps, New Zealand – December 10th, 2011

44S 170.1E

December 10th, 2011 Category: Image of the day, Lakes, Rivers

New Zealand - November 25th, 2011

Three roughly parallel alpine glacial lakes in the Mackenzie Basin of New Zealand’s South Island appear bright hues of blue and green in this image (from left to right): Lake Oahu, Lake Pukaki and Lake Tekapo.

All three lakes were created when the terminal moraines of receding glaciers blocked their respective valleys, forming moraine-dammed lakes. The glacial feed to the lakes gives them a distinctive blue colour, created by glacial flour, the extremely finely ground rock particles from the glaciers.

Lake Oahu is fed by the Hopkins and Dobson rivers, which have their headwaters in the Southern Alps. It is the smallest of the three, with a surface area of 60 km².

Lake Pukaki is the largest of the three, covering an area of 178.7 km². The lake is fed at its northern end by the braided Tasman River, which has its source in the Tasman and Hooker Glaciers, close to Aoraki/Mount Cook.

Lake Tekapo is the second-largest, covering an area of 83 km2. The lake is fed at its northern end by the braided Godley River, which has its source in the Southern Alps to the north.

Mountains of New Zealand’s North Island

December 6th, 2011 Category: Mountains

New Zealand - November 14th, 2011

This orthorectified image reaches across New Zealand’s North Island, from the Raukumara Range (above) to Poverty Bay (below, in full image). The Raukumara Range lies north of Gisborne, near East Cape in New Zealand’s North Island. It forms part of the North Island’s main mountain chain, which runs north-northeast from Wellington to East Cape.

Poverty Bay is the largest of several small bays on the east coast of New Zealand’s North Island to the north of Hawkes Bay. It stretches for 10 kilometres from Young Nick’s Head in the southwest to Tuaheni Point in the northeast. The city of Gisborne, visible here as a white area, is located on the northern shore of the bay.

Phytoplankton East of Banks Peninsula, New Zealand

42.9S 174.0E

November 27th, 2011 Category: Phytoplankton, Sediments

New Zealand - November 21st, 2011

The faint swirls of a phytoplankton bloom can be observed in the waters off the coast of New Zealand, east of the Banks Peninsula on the country’s South Island. Part of the North Island can be observed north of the bloom, at the top edge.

The bright bluish-green water framing the coastline of the peninsula is probably sediment re-suspended from the ocean floor by waves and tides, or washed into the ocean through rivers. In several places along the shoreline, tan sediments can be seen pouring into the ocean directly at the mouths of rivers.