Now I am only 2 days behind in writing these posts.
We walked to the train station early this morning and caught the long distance train from Wellington to Tongariro National Park. We were scheduled to leave at 8:00 but were delayed a bit because of a computer glitch in the ticketing. The train ride was great fun. I spent a lot of time on the platform by observation car.
These are some of the photos I took of the rolling hills and Ruapehu Mountain from the train.
We went around several curves and I finally got a photo of the front of the train.
I remember seeing cows like this in Ireland and somebody told me they were from the Netherlands. I think these are the same kind of cows.
This is Ruapehu. It means two peaks.
What a fabulous train ride. We arrived at the Tongariro National Park a little after 1:00 and were picked up by our shuttle ride to the Tongariro Chalet.
Here is a view of Mount Tongariro. It is an active volcano.
Here are some facts about Mount Tongariro.
- November 21, 2012 – eruption, ash plume from Te Maari Crater.
- August 6, 2012 – eruption, first since 1897. …
- The Tongariro volcano is a massive complex of volcanic cones formed by at least 12 vents erupting over more than 275,000 years.
- Mt Tongariro itself is a complex of craters that have been active at different periods
- Mt Tongariro is the northern-most of three volcanoes that includes Mt Ngauruhoe and Mt Ruapehu
- Geologists describe Tongariro as an “active stratovolcano”, or composite cone, made up of alternating layers of ash and lava flow
- Tongariro in Maori means “fire carried away or seized by the cold south wind”
- Popular walking track Tongariro Alpine Crossing bypasses the volcano
- Parts of the Lord of the Rings trilogy were filmed in the Tongariro National Park, where Mt Ngauruhoe was cast as Mt Doom
After settling in a bit we went to the visitor’s center to find out about a hike for today. We then looked for a restaurant for dinner after our hike.
We decided to walk to Taranaki Fall. The trail was very pleasant.
The trail then became a bit of an uphill climb. I was not expecting much of a waterfall, so I was pleased when we arrived at the first one.
Then we arrived at Taranaki Falls.
It was quite a surprise to see a couple come up the other side of our hike with a pram and a 7 day (that’s right – 7 day) old baby. I was amazed. I took photos of them with their camera.
On the way to the pub for dinner we saw both Ruapehu
I had a great lamb burger. After dinner I was very tired and we had to get up to catch a 7:00 am shuttle for our hike in the morning. So it was off to bed.