Ruapehu Vol.1

Published on April 5, 2015, by in News.



A few weeks ago while on the Jungle Journal assignment, we worked with the tourism Ruapehu to shoot a few staples of the region.  Mainly, a 20km hike through the volcanic landscape of the Tongariro Crossing which has become a hell of a tourist destination after some guy named “Frodo” decided to throw a ring into one of it’s main attractions Mt.Ngauruhoe.  Tourist trap or not, the crossing is a wild landscape that needs to be experienced.  Take vibrant mineral infused pools and place them amidst venting craters of red and orange, towering peaks, and pungent musk of sulphur… it’s as close to Mars as any of us will get.  That being said, you can’t just go to Mars for 2 days, it’s just not right… It’s rude.  You need time to take things in, maybe skip over and give Mercury a gander.  But given the schedule our convoy had to roll on.  Putting Mt.Doom in the rearview we parted ways but knew we’d be back.



Now fast-forwarding to last week.  We had just weathered Crankworks in Rotorua when Mike and Claire the fine folks at Tourism Ruapehu invited Traharn and I back to show us what lies in the woodwork beyond Frodo throw.  What was meant to be a short two day excursion turned into one of the best weeks I’ve had in New Zealand.  Jungle trails, Volcanoes, Helicopter, Jet Boats, Waterfalls, Rivers, a ridiculously cool Eco Lodge… The place is Insane!


In the shadow of the crossing lies a whole other playground, and it’s better than fiction!  Take Jurassic Park and that crazy island King Kong lives, blend them together, substitute all the deadly “hunt your in the dark” creatures for Goats and Boom! You have yourself our destination.  Waterfalls peeling into gorges of moss, the Whanganui River bisecting ruggedly lush rainforest, the echoing pitch  of songbirds, one seriously interesting trail that transports you through history, and  eco-warrior/conservationist/All around good guy Dan Steele.



Knowing that people in general don’t like to read anymore, I’ll leave this post where it lies and expand later.  On a closing note, I’ll say life has been functioning on the level of “Unreal!” for quite some time.  Loving Life on the Road!

Follow the Adventures via Instagram: @Mikejhopkins

Life on the Road

Published on March 30, 2015, by in News.


After 6 weeks on the move, bouncing from project to project, I’ve finally found a little down time to catch up.  Well kind of… I’m sitting in a condo in Ohakune waiting on weather to clear so our next adventure can kick off.  But hey, well we wait I might aswell fill you in.  My life has been pretty flat out since mid-February… Two weeks on the North Island working on the Jungle Journal assignment, fly to Queenstown for a day, jump another plane to Nelson to meet up with the Smith Team for a ten-day  South Island excursion, back to QT for another shoot, jet-set to Rotorua, drag the Bike Mag fellas into the Jungle for a few days, out of the forest, up to Bay of Islands, Crankworks, and that brings us to the here and now… Posted up in Ohakune waiting on a sucker hole so our next excursion involving both a heli and jet boat can kick off.  The Adventure Continues!

TR3(in) pb3.6

I’ll try to keep this o’l blog here a little more up to date from here on out.

Jungle Journal iii

Published on March 6, 2015, by in News.

And this my friends is the definition of good living. A nostalgic sunset in Whanarua Bay amidst the North Island’s East Cape. ‪#‎junglejournal‬


#JungleJournal ii

Published on March 4, 2015, by in News.

Garett Buehler try’s his hand at Jumanji, as he Disappears into the jungle of the 100 year old Pakihi Track, a 40KM stock trail connecting Opotiki to Motu. Our team took full advantage of the often overlooked adventures of the North Island’s East Cape.  ‪#‎junglejournal‬


The Jungle Journal: New Zealand’s North

Published on March 3, 2015, by in News.

For the past 2 weeks Traharn, Camilla Rutherford, Casey Brown, Garret Buehler, and myself have been  off the grid, living out of a couple vintage VW vans, touring around New Zealand’s north island. Nights on the beach, multi-day adventure rides, hiking volcanoes, bodysurfing and battling rainforest… It’s been a hell of an adventure.  I’ll be posting images from the trip over the next couple weeks but look for the story in print.  I’ll let you know when it hits stands.  Follow the trip on Instagram at #Junglejournal or via my feed @MikejHopkins