New Zealand and Australia
May-June 2010

LAUNCHED: 1 October 2010.       LAST UPDATED:

Accessed at least many times since 1 October 2010.

OVERVIEW: This was a trip of just under two months. From Manchester, New Hampshire, to Sacramento, then by train to Oakland and then to Santa Barbara; LAX to Auckland, then by car to Wellington, ferry to Picton, car to Christchurch and later to Dunedin; Christchurch to Brisbane by plane and later to Noosa by car; Noosa to Sydney by car; Sydney to Canberra and back by car; train to Adelaide, train to Melbourne; ferry to Devonport, car to Hobart; Hobart to Melbourne by plane, then plane to LAX and later on to Boston. Whew!

You can scroll through and have a look at my entire trip or just go to the section that interests you:
Go to the CALIFORNIA section

Go to the NEW ZEALAND section

Go to the SIAFU reunion section

Go to the AUSTRALIA section

Go to the SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE section

Go to the SOME ANTARCTIC SITES in California, New Zealand and Australia section

Go to the AURORA AUSTRALIS section


I was in California from 30 April until 8 May.

Toph and Emily's house in East Sacramento.

Larkin, Phin and Toph, chicken farmers.

Outside Sutter's Fort.

On the train to Oakland.

Karen and Steve's house in Oakland.


Lunch in Berkeley with my two favorite Karens.

The cable car approaching the Buena Vista where Irish coffee was introduced to America.

The world's most beautiful bridge.


The train from Oakland to Santa Barbara.

John and Lucy's house at Rincon south of Santa Barbara.

Watching the surfers at Rincon.

Lotus Land where Lucy's a docent.

The Spot in Carpinteria has great burgers.

The bank in Brentwood where I worked in the summer of 1962 and the same building, different bank, in 2010.

Dinner in Santa Monica before heading to the airport:
My brother John, Jo Heathcote, Michael and Sheila Rosove.

NOTE: There are more photos of my time in California up in cyberspace at [yet to come]


I spent about two weeks in New Zealand from 10 May until I left for Brisbane on the 23rd. A good bit of the time I travelled with Luci Edwards from Calgary who was also on her way to the SIAFU reunion in Queensland. In Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch we stayed in service apartments which worked out pretty well—lots of room, a place to make breakfast or a sandwich, and comparable in price to a hotel room.

We took bus tours in Auckland and Wellington, had a rental car to take us from Auckland to Christchurch, sampled the food and drink and generally had a good time.

I saw changes since I was last in New Zealand—1991—but nothing like the changes between 1965 and 1991.

I accomplished nearly everything I wanted to do. I did get down to Dunedin, which was new to me, after Luci left for Australia.

The Auckland skyline.

Between Auckland and Wellington.
Looks more like Nevada or Colorado.

Wellington highrises.

Here I am with my co-star making a Bollywood movie in Wellington.

The ferry (actually the sister ship) between Wellington and the South Island.

The view from our apartment in Christchurch.

Luci and me dining out in the Christchurch.

The Museum in Lyttelton, the port of Christchurch. Lots of Antarctic treasures here.

The same intersection in Auckland, 1965 and 2010.

Cathedral Square in Christchurch, 1965 and 2010.

NOTE: There are more photos of my time in New Zealand up in cyberspace at [yet to come]

SIAFU Reunion

Back in 1972 I travelled by Landrover with a group of people from London to Nairobi. It was quite an adventure back then with many memories. Some of us have gotten together over the years and have had now four reunions, the most recent in Noosa, Queensland, north of Brisbane. We spent a week there doing a lot of talking, eating and drinking, reminiscing and touring about.

In 2012 or so we're thinking of gathering either in Spain or in Calgary.

third reunion was in Gargunnock, Scotland, near Stirling.

Our Reunion T-shirt.

The Reunioners at Noosa. The empty T-shirt is for Francie.

The Munna Beach Apartments—Our Reunion HQ.

Along the boardwalk in Noosa.

Lunch at the Surf Club in Noosa.

Dinner at the Vanilla Cafe Bar just up from our apartments.

Stopping for coffee in Montville, overlooking the Glasshouse Mountains.

The Glasshouse Mountains, so-named by Captain Cook.

NOTE: There are more photos of the SIAFU reunion up in cyberspace at [yet to come]


I left Noosa on 31 May and travelled in a variety of ways to Sydney, Canberra, Sydney again, Adelaide, Melbourne, Tasmania, Melbourne, then on Los Angeles and Boston on 27 June.

Where Captain Cook stepped ashore in Botany Bay.

The Carleton Hotel in Brisbane in 1965. The same scene today.

Brisbane's Regatta Hotel in 1965. B&B for £2. The Regatta today.

On the way to Canberra I had to have a pint in Australia's oldest pub in Berrima.

The concrete ram in Goulburn.

University House at the Australian National University in 1965.

The same scene today and the same birch trees.

The University of Sydney Union and Parramatta Road in 1965.

The same scene today.

My old college at the University of Sydney.

Here I am underneath my old room at Wesley College.
There was no handy pub below me back in 1965.

The Sydney skyline from the Manly ferry.

Circular Quay and vicinity from near the Opera House.

The skyline and the Harbour Bridge from Vaucluse in 1965.

The skyline and the Harbour Bridge from Vaucluse today.

The Indian Pacific, my train from Sydney to Adelaide.

Not much to see in western New South Wales.

Public pig art in Adelaide.

Eureka Tower, Melbourne's tallest (91 floors).

Splurging on dessert on the overnight ferry to Tasmania.

Gordon and Pat Bain—my Hobart hosts.

Elizabeth and Macquarie Streets in Hobart in 1965.

The same scene today.

The Custom House Hotel in Hobart in 1965.

Still serving beer in 2010.

Murray and Macquarie Streets in Hobart in 1965.

The same scene today.

Hobart's Salamanca Place in 1965.

The same scene today.

Richmond, Tasmania, or is it Scotland?

NOTE: There are more photos of my time in Australia up in cyberspace at [yet to come]


The Sydney Opera House was under construction when I spent my year in Sydney (1965-66). Every day there was an article in the Sydney Morning Herald, usually on the front page, about the Opera House. It was either about the project being over budget (it was financed by a lottery so no one really cared, as far as I recall); or there was some engineering problem or challenge; or the architect was getting difficult; on and on. Well, it was in-construction when I arrived in Sydney, and still in-construction when I left. And it was some years after that before the curtain went up.

Sometime during my Sydney stay I toured the building site with some local architects and planners. One thing I remember vividly is how like marble the concrete was. There were fibreglas forms used in the casting of the various structural elements and what came out of these were surfaces like glass.

Back then we—and all of Sydney—thought the outer surfaces of the 'sails' would be solid and white. That may have been Utzon's original idea but that's not how it turned out once the engineers (Ove Arup, mainly) got involved. The upshot was that the surface was made up of many square ceramic tiles (imported from Denmark), glazed and a little rough on the outer surface, with deeped unglazed ridges on the under side. How do I know? When I toured the site I picked up a discarded tile and took it with me. I still have it and place my beverage of choice on it nearly every evening!

So here are a few images from back in 1965 and a few from 2010. Does the building really work well? I can't tell, but it is a beautiful piece of sculpture!

You can learn all about the Sydney Opera House at the Opera House's
website and at Wikipedia.



NOTE: There are more photos of the Sydney Opera House up in cyberspace at [yet to come]


A good bit of my time in New Zealand and Australia was spent tracking down what I call "Low-Latitude" Antarctic sites, i.e. places with some Antarctic connection but not located in the Antarctic. There are close to 1,000 that I have identified and in many cases have visited. (These are detailed at

I'm including some but not all of those that I saw during my trip. (The numbers refer to my LLAG database.)


The Amundsen monument in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco (584).
For years the Gjøa stood here until it was returned to Norway in 1975.
It's now at the Fram Museum in Oslo.

New Zealand

The Auckland Institute and Museum (036).
Not much Antarcticana on display, but a lot in the back room.

The Byrd Memorial near the top of Mt Victoria overlooking Wellington (044).
The original version, dedicated in 1962, was rejuvenated, altered and rededicated in 1993.
The tentlike structure faces south and contains a bust of Byrd.

Thomas Orde-Lees' gravemarker at Karori Cemetery, Wellington (140).
They got it wrong: it should be "T. H. [for Hans] O. Lees".
Not far away is 'Chips' McNeish's grave.
It's a lovely very hilly spot.

I'm sharing Harry McNeish's slab with his famous cat, 'Mrs Chippy' (140).
Both Orde Lees and McNeish were members of Shackleton's Endurance expedition.

Captain Scott in Christchurch, sculpted in Carrara marble by his wife, Kathleen.
It was unveiled on 21 May 1917 (026).
It nearly duplicates the version in bronze that stands in Waterloo Place, London.
As with Orde-Lees' marker, there's a misspelling here: A. E. Wilson not E. A. Wilson.

Christchurch Cathedral (actually Christ Church Cathedral)(043).
Several Antarctic connections including flags and two plaques.

The Antarctic Visitor Centre's Penguin Express shuttle.
This and a variety of other Antarctic-related organizations and government facilities
are at the Christchurch Airport (059).

The Operation Deepfreeze warehouse at the Christchurch airport (972).

The Operation Deepfreeze office at the Christchurch airport (972).

This totem pole near the Christchurch airport was given "by the people of Oregon in appreciation of the warm hospitality
extended to the Officers and men of the US Air Force and Navy during Operation Deep Freeze." (340)

Polar historian David Harrowfield in front of the California Redwood tree in North Hagley Park, Christchurch,
that was presented in 1976 to express appreciation for "hospitality to Deepfreeze." (342)

The Antarctic corner at the excellent Air Force Museum of New Zealand on the outskirts of Christchurch (343).

Shackleton planted this Oak Tree at a school in Christchurch in 1917 (346).

Some of the Antarctic memorabilia in Baillies Bar, Warners Hotel, Christchurch (406).

Penguin Street in New Brighton near Christchurch (979).
Nearby is Shackleton Street.

The Stephen Gleeson bust of Frank Worsley in Akaroa (616).

Frank Worsley's birthplace in Akaroa (973)

This oak tree with plaque in Oamaru commemorates the return of the Terra Nova from the Antarctic in 1913 (336).
From this town the news of the loss of the Polar Party was telegraphed to the world.

The Polar Party memorial overlooking Port Chalmers, the port of Dunedin (130).
It was unveiled on 30 May 1914.
Port Chalmers was often the last port for ships heading to the Antarctic.

As Scott's Discovery was leaving Port Chalmers, Charles Bonner fell from the mast and died.
This is his grave, recently restored, in a lovely setting above Port Chalmers (338)


The suburb of Mawson near Canberra (493).
31 streets named after Antarctic explorers, ships, places, etc.

The National Museum of Australia in Canberra. A dramatic building in a dramatic location.
Hurley's camera is here (049).

Silly polar gear at the Australian Academy of Science (838).

The home-made flag planted at the South Magnetic Pole.
It resides at the Australian Academy of Science (838).

Bust of Sir Douglas Mawson on the North Terrace, Adelaide (656)

The bench near Mawson's house in Brighton, South Australia (951).

The plaque on the bench near Mawson's house in Brighton, South Australia (951).

Sir Douglas Mawson's gravesite behind St Jude Anglican Church in Brighton, South Australia
(the flat marker on the far side of the upright monument beside the bench) (590).

The Pavilion at the Oval at the University of Adelaide (968).

The plaque on the back wall of the Pavilion at the University of Adelaide oval (968).
Ernest Shackleton donated £100.

The ANARE memorial plaque in St Paul's Cathedral, Melbourne (390).

The Melbourne Club where Bertram Armytage did himself in in Room 24 (904).

Janie surveys Bertram Armytage's grave at Kew Cemetery, Melbourne (906).

The GPO in Hobart (232)
It was from here, on 8 March 1912, that Roald Amundsen
sent the telegram that told the world he had reached the South Pole.

Hadleys Hotel (233) was where Amundsen stayed when in Hobart.
You can stay there, too, and in the Amundsen Suite, Room 202.

Cornelian Bay Cemetery, Hobart (237).
The memorial to those men who died during Dumont d'Urville's expedition,
29 of whom are buried here.

Liz Truswell admiring the bust of Dumont D'urville at Government House in Hobart (363).

Maritime Museum of Tasmania, Hobart (252).
Some interesting photos and displays relating to Hobart and the Antarctic.

Steven Walker's sculpture at the Reserve Bank at 111 Macquarie Street, Hobart (245).

Amundsen bust at IMAS (Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies)
at the University of Tasmania (618).

The Bernacchi statue on the Hobart waterfront (748).

The memorial rock at the Australian Antarctic Division.
At the moment this qualifies as the "largest piece of Antarctica outside of the Antarctic" (065).

The AAD also has what is probably the largest "map" of Antarctica (065).

The Australian icebreaker Aurora Australis in Hobart harbor.
Note: Not the one on the left or those on the right with masts, but the orange one in the center!


The Aurora Australis is usually referred to as the first book published in Antarctica. During Shackleton's Nimrod expedition (1907-09), the book was written, edited, illustrated, printed, bound and issued. It is probably the most sought-after Antarctic rarity. Perhaps 80 copies were produced. I've been tracking them down all over the world for many years, now. (For far more information than you'll ever want, go to the
section of my Antarctic website on the Aurora.)

One of my goals during this trip was to inspect as many of the copies in public collections as possible. I did a pretty good job and managed to see 13 copies.

Below are the libraries/museums whose Auroras I had the pleasure of inspecting:

Wellington, New Zealand

The New Zealand Archives—temporary home of the Turnbull Library (039),
presently under renovation. The Turnbull has two copies of the Aurora.

Christchurch, New Zealand

The Canterbury Museum in Christchurch—perhaps the
largest and best Antarctic collection on display anywhere.

Sydney, Australia

The State Library of New South Wales in Sydney (546).
There are two copies of the Aurora here.

The reading room at the State Library of New South Wales in Sydney (546).

Canberra, Australia

The National Library in Canberra (938).
Looking at two Auroras with Allen Mawer and Erica Ryan.

Adelaide, Australia

The Barr Smith Library, University of Adelaide (941).

The main reading room at the Barr Smith Library, University of Adelaide.
There's a portrait of Mawson on the wall (941).

The State Library of South Australia in Adelaide (942).

South Australian Museum, Adelaide (566).
The home of the Mawson Exhibition, a large gallery devoted to the Antarctic explorer.

Melbourne, Australia

Museum Victoria in Melbourne (236).
Here I am with Leonie Cash and Museum Victoria's 'Aurora.'

Hobart, Australia

The Australian Antarctic Division in Hobart (065).
Inspecting the AAD's copy.

The State Library of Tasmania (236).
Photographing its Aurora.