Monochrome Madness — Country Theme

Leanne Cole’s suggested theme for this week’s Monochrome Madness Challenge is “Country.” For my entry I decided to combine two meanings of the word. According to Wikipedia, “A country is a region that is identified as a distinct entity in political geography.” According to, another meaning of country “is rural districts, including farmland, parkland, and other sparsely populated areas, as opposed to cities or towns.” The country I chose is New Zealand and the photo is a picture of a plant in a rain forest in the middle of the country. But not just any plant. It just happens to be a silver fern, which has become the symbol of the spirit of the country. And it’s also the logo for many of the country’s products and organizations, including the country’s beloved rugby team, the All Blacks.


Silver Fern in Kaitoke State Park north of Wellington on New Zealand’s North Island. The Rivendell scenes in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy were shot in Kaitoke.

Here are a few more pictures from our trip to New Zealand:


We flew out of San Francisco one Spring morning in 2011 and ventured south of the Equator for the first time in our lives. After a long, long flight we landed in Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city. Here is the view of the city from the balcony of our waterfront hotel.


After four days in Auckland we flew to Wellington and spent another four days there. On one of those days we joined a day-long Lord of the Rings tour and one of the places we visited was Kaitoke State Park. Here I am posing as an Elf in Rivendell. In The Fellowship of the Rings Legolas the Elf (Orlando Bloom) shot an arrow from this platform. Our tour guide thought that a bow and arrow might be too dangerous, though, and so she supplied the sword and scabbard instead. And the Elf ears.


After our four days in Wellington we flew to Queenstown on New Zealand’s South Island and spent our last three days in New Zealand there.  Here’s the view from our apartment along Lake Wakatipu.


On our last full day in New Zealand we took the bus from Queenstown to Arrowtown and walked along the Arrow River for a spell and came across this scene where Arwen (Liv Tyler) rescued Frodo Baggins (Elijah Wood) from the Ringwraiths at the Ford of Bruinen.

From Queenstown we flew to Sydney, Australia for a week. Leanne Cole found one of my Sydney postings and we have been following each other’s blogs ever since. Why don’t you drop by her website this week to see what other photographers came up with for their country theme in Monochrome?


About crowcanyonjournal

I am a family man with interests in family history, photography, history and travel.
This entry was posted in New Zealand, Travel, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Monochrome Madness — Country Theme

  1. Awesome choice for the Theme! I was torn between Country…my own which is the USA, or Country like in rural. You’re so blessed to have been able to travel to both Australia and NZ! Both are on my bucket list, but who knows if I’ll ever get there. What a treat to recreate a scene from Tolkien’s Lord of the Ring series and find another spot from the movie as well! The Hobbit is favorite book in the Saga. I’ve never felt Frodo was worthy of the ring…I think Sam would have been a better choice myself. Frodo was not made of the same stuff that Bilbo Baggins was en mon avis.

    • We saw several other LOTR locations that day. Remember that scene in Fellowship of the Rings where Sam and Frodo hid under a tree when they were being chased by the Black Riders? Well, that scene was filmed in a forest overlooking Wellington. The founders of the town cut down all of the trees nearby to build their houses. Then they sent for Monterey Pine seeds from our own Monterey Peninsula to replant their forest. That’s why California trees appear in the movie!

  2. disperser says:

    Love the elf ears . . . but where is the long silky hair?

    • Ha-ha! Those were the only props supplied by our tour guide. Also, it rained a lot that day (after all, we were in a rain forest!) and I don’t think the long silky hair would have held up. I probably would have looked more like one of your aliens from outer space than one of Tolkien’s elfs (elves?)!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.