We did not let the rain hold us back and on our first day drove along the lakeside to Turangi, then drove up the SH 1 past the Pillars of Hercules and turned onto Tree Trunk Gorge Road. Here the River Tongariro forms a frothing torrent as is squeezes through black rocks, the river is described as ‘Emerald’, today it was due to the torrential rainfall it was dirty brown, and raging through the Gorge, quite spectacular and scary. We attempted to follow the trail down to the river, but due to the intense rain this was impossible, the ground underfoot was a quagmire. We drove downstream to another churning crevice of the Tongariro River to the Waikato Falls,
|In the rain at Waikato Falls|
The next day we did The Craters of The Moon Geothermal Walk. This was a 45 minute walk through an area that appeared in the 1950s, when a nearby power station lowered underground water levels. As hot water was withdrawn from deep within the field, the water level in the deep reservoir dropped and the water that remained boiled more violently, producing more steam. This extra stem was able to escape at The Craters of The Moon. The walk guides you through bubbling craters, mud pools and steam vents. There were many interesting plants that have adapted themselves to the hot steamy conditions to see. Even though we had done the Rotorua Thermal ‘thing’ Craters of the moon was different again, In fact it was a absorbing walk all for $5.00.
|Craters of The Moon|
We then drove up the Wairakei Terrace road to the Borefeild Lookout. All that Natural power being harnessed by Man...fascinating!
|Free Hot Springs.|