Saturday, July 23, 2011

Rotorua

Yesterday was the start of the "way back when..." series when I catch up with the old blog. Today, we revisit a trip to Rotorua quite some time ago.

Rotorua is near the center of the North Island, and is a hotbed of geothermic activity. The whole place smells like rotten eggs from the perpetually bubbling mud and geysers. This type of activity shows itself down to the south end of Taupo.


Rotorua the town was nice enough. Some people call it Roto-Vegas because there is a lot of neon, but I hear there is no night life. Go figure. The lake was cool though. In the end though, we didn't stay too much longer than a snack and some rather quick lake time.

Instead we went out to Lake Tarawera, where we hung out for the afternoon and camped. As you can see below it went from low clouds and blowy to sunny and blowy.



We even had an interesting sunset.


The next morning the wind had died, so we had nice flat water, and could even see the massive crater that had been looming over us overnight.



Before leaving, we stopped at Tarawera Falls, which is the product of an underground river exiting the rock. It was really quite impressive, but perhaps more so is the fact that there are freshwater eels there that can climb it. Well played.


Lake Karapiro may have been the real hidden gem. Just south of Cambridge, which is just south of Hamilton (so sort of in the middle of nowhere) was this lovely lake. Perhaps it was because the light was just right on a lovely autumn day, but we were really jealous of the folks in the campervan who clearly weren't going anywhere (what, with their wine and all). I don't recall wanting to clear out.







Photo of the Day


Thursday, July 21, 2011

Pinnacles

Quite a while ago now, Shannon and I took a little overnight backpacking trip to the Pinnacles over on the Coramandel Peninsula. It was our first time staying in a DOC hut, and naturally, we stayed at the largest one in the country.

Despite being fully booked in the middle of winter, half by a school group (when did my high school take me out in the woods like that??), it was a pretty good experience, and we met some cool folks.

The weather was variable (being mid-winter), but we managed to have a dry hike up to the hut, and a staggeringly clear view at the top of the Pinnacles, albeit, quiet windy.

The photos below show some of the way up, including one of the many swing bridges, a quick shot of the top of the hut (and how large it is), and the Pinnacles themselves. No view from the top, because my camera battery died after giving me quite an ample warning. Special note in the last shot of the stairs going to the top.








Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Monday, July 11, 2011

Sunday, July 10, 2011