Raoul Island Diaries: In need of a drink

DOC on Raoul Island —  29/01/2010

Raoul Island diary #2 by Mike Fawcett

In need of rain

Making friends with the local seabirds.

Making friends with the local seabirds.

Parched. That’s the word that comes to mind when thinking about the month been. Heading into the Christmas season we all look forward to having a drink and a bit of Christmas cheer! Mighty Raoul herself is in need of a drink! November 2009 has been the second driest month on record.

With less than 10mm of rain in the last two months this fire and brimstone goddess of the South Pacific is in need of rain! The weed teams have noticed the effects of the lack of rain: the heat stress plants are going through, and the dust that invades our eyes, hair and climbing equipment.

Down time

Oneraki beach. Photo: Gareth Rapley.

Oneraki beach. Photo: Gareth Rapley.

All this talk of drought, we can’t complain about the wonderful weather that comes with this dry spell. Days and evenings have been spent down at Oneraki beach swimming and surfing; weekends exploring and lazing about.

With endless BBQs and sampling home brew, along with an outstanding idyllic setting, one can be excused for the blissful ignorance when informed of news from home, international current affairs and humanity in general!

International visitors

In early December we had the privilege of sharing our island with guests from the cruise ship Clipper Odyssey. An international contingent from USA, Canada, Norway and Germany anchored out in the bay off Fishing Rock. Nearly 50 people landed on the island and received a guided tour of the hostel and local surrounds.

On board the Clipper Odyssey.

Free lunch! On board the Clipper Odyssey.

An amazing effort was put in by the Raoul team, who rattled up batches of scones and tea. A devious plan to butter them up with home baking, the team were rewarded with an invitation aboard the cruise vessel for a BBQ lunch and an afternoon of snorkelling around the Meyer Islands. A thoroughly enjoyable day was had by all.

Back to work

Track clearing on Raoul.

We do some work out here! Track clearing on Raoul Island.

Back to semi normality, and the team have been working hard weeding, doing track maintenance and the daily running of Raoul Island’s infrastructure.

Two months have passed already and we are quickly moving into a new year. What can we look forward to? An air drop supply? Rain from the heavens? A few things are a certainty: good home brew, plenty of weeding and good company!

From the team at Raoul Island, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

DOC on Raoul Island


The Raoul Island diary is written by "Raoul Islanders" - DOC staff and volunteers living and working on Raoul Island in the Kermadec Island group. DOC staff include a team leader, mechanic and rangers. Up to 10 volunteers spend approximately 5 to 6 months on the island helping DOC staff get rid of weeds.

2 responses to Raoul Island Diaries: In need of a drink


    Nice work. It sounds like paradise out there. You need to give me some tips on how to make weeding enjoyable though. I can’t even keep our backyard weeded.