The western edge of the city of Auckland is flanked by the forested Waitakere Ranges. In thirty minutes from the centre of the city one can be in the tranquility of forest wilderness. Maori came and occupied the fringes of the great Forest of Tiriwa, Europeans came and milled the kauri, timber used to build ships and dwellings in the cities of the Pacific rim, but remnants were saved. Today the forest is again thrusting skyward and new generations of people are appreciating beauty, once nearly lost.
The story of the Waitakere Ranges is written by many authors who tell us from various points of view, what it is about the Ranges that they love and value.
The book contains essays on the natural history, asserting the fascination and intrinsic value of the wildlife and proposing ideas to enhance it. Other essays tell the history, both the destruction and conservation of the great forest and the lives of the people who settled here. Maori past is presented as a poetic essay about the place names in history and legend. The Ranges environment has inspired some of New Zealand’s most celebrated poets writers and artists, so the book concludes with the reproduction of works of art, poetry and prose that are identified with the area.
This book has over 50 contributors and covers the natural history, history and culture of the Ranges area.
Over 500 pages, hard-covered, in full colour and lavishly illustrated with wildlife photographs, drawings and maps, historical and contemporary photographs and paintings from the nineteenth century to the present, the book tells the story of this place in many voices, an encouraging story of recovery of an area once nearly devastated. this book has something for everyone who loves the beautiful Waitakere Ranges.
Edited by Bruce and Trixie Harvey, the book is a collection of essays, articles, art and writing from over 70 contributors.
Sponsored by Waitakere City Council, Auckland Regional Council, ASB Trust, Lotteries,Watercare Services Ltd and the Waitakere and Portage Licensing Trusts, the book was a long-term project that was finally realised in 2006.