Wednesday, Feb 3, 2016
I have walked through “The land of Mordor” technically known as the Tongariro National Park. As Les Potapczyk had told me before I left Canada, the Tongariro Alpine Crossing was a wonderful experience.
We left the campsite in Ohakune, after we paid for the nights stay and Cheryl drove to the Mangatepopo carpark for me to start the 19.4 km walk through Tongarirro before embarking on a few sightseeing tours. We arrived at the carpark at 9:20 am.
I view from the carpark was very desolate and after I walked 6 km I took a look back at the trek. Its hard to see, but the white specks near the small hill at the top centre of the picture, are the cars in the carpark.
I climbed through the crater and over the next rim. I took a picture of the view from the rim back down the trail I had completed. You can barely make out the line of people walking through the rim of the crater.
1 km past the rim there was a view down to 2 emerald and 2 blue lakes and the red crater.
You could smell the sulphur in the air, so I didn’t stay long. I kept on walking and the landscape started to change after I had completed approximately 12 km.
As I neared the end of the trek, the landscape changed to a forest.
I finally reached the Ketetahi carpark at 2:20, shortly before Cheryl arrived to pick me up.
Cheryl spent the time taking photographs in the area, taking a ski lift and hiking on Mount Ruapehu to get some pictures of the snow patches and a waterfall, as well as the mountain views, before she returned to pick me up.
From the Ketetahi carpark we drove to Taupo to find a campsite and then embark on a sailing adventure. After a quick shower, we sailed at 5 pm on a sailboat called the ” Barbery “.
We sailed out for about 1 hour until we came to some Maori rock carvings which were created in the 70’s for the people of Taupo as a way of honouring the Maori.
When we got back, we drove back to the campsite, did some laundry and worked on our journals, before calling it a day.