New Zealand
Whakapapa Village

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183 travelers at this place

  • Day42

    Day 42/72: Tongariro Crossing

    December 8, 2018 in New Zealand ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    We woke up early to get the shuttle bus to the start of the Tongariro Crossing! It was a cold morning and we were walking up to over 1800m so we wrapped up warm. We wolfed down big bowls of cereal, made some ham and cheese cobs and set off for the bus.

    The bus was full and we arrived at the crossing with about 40 other people. There were already lots of people there, it was a beautiful Saturday after all and the weather promised to stay clear and dry. We began the walk pretty much as soon as we got off the bus, interestingly the driver who took us there becomes responsible for anyone who they bring to the crossing, and has to ensure that they are finished by the end of the day and if not the driver has to go and find them.

    The scenery was fantastic, mountains right in front of us and snow capped peaks looming up from the lava rock that we were walking across. The crowds had come in droves though and at the start it felt a lot like quick queueing instead of hiking. But as Izzi marched on ahead, overtaking people as if she had somewhere to be, the crowds thinned out and walking became much more pleasant. The first section was all uphill and before long we'd stopped to take off all our layers, change into shorts and layered on the suncream. The scenery was brilliant all the way: you'll see in the pictures.
    The path was decent too, gravel and staired, and then we came over a ridge and for about a mile it was completely flat with mountains to our left and right. It felt like a huge crater on the moon (or what you'd imagine that to look like if you walked across it). We then had to scramble out of the crater on the other side, and at the top stopped to have a waffle and an apple, and sit looking over the rolling hills and mountains around us, truly spectacular! We carried on up the hill and below the top of the peak we saw 3 lakes steeply below us, with steam rising from random points in the ground. The walk down there was tricky, patches of loose dry mud that sank under your feet, and gravel on top of very hard dry rock which made you skid. At this point we felt sorry for the people struggling in trainers and plimsoles, and we slightly wondered at the end if they had fallen or not. It was tough going and the steam began to drift across the path, filling out heads with the smell of badly rotten eggs (this won't quite translate in the pictures). We walked around the lakes, taking lots of photos and then left quickly as the stench was getting to us.

    The hike from that point was all downhill, and the landscape below us began to reveal itself. It was stunning, and we were walking towards it and could see for miles. What a great hike! The further we got down, the more the landscape changed. The greener the plants got and the higher they grew. After a few hours, we'd gone from walking through barran desert to walking through a lush green forest. It'd taken us 5 and a half hours of walking, and we sat at the end waiting for the bus to take us back to the campsite, feeling very fulfilled and thinking about the views we'd just seen. Unfortunately, we had done it a bit quicker than expected, and the first bus back wasn't expected for at least another hour, so we sat in the sun and baked for a bit.

    The entire walk was dotted with signs of what to do if the volcano erupts, and "Caution- you are now entering a lahar flow zone- move quickly and don't stop. If you hear noise from upstream, run." which made it interesting.

    After a good half an hour on a bus, we realised just how tired we were and read for the rest of the afternoon and evening in the dappled sunlight split by trees over our campervan. It was a fab day!
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  • Day69

    Tama lake walk

    December 7, 2019 in New Zealand ⋅ ☁️ 15 °C

    We were due to do the Tongariro crossing. Our bus was meant to leave at 4.50 which meant a very early 4.15am start for breakfast and faffing.
    Got to the bus and the driver gave us the low down for the day. He said that it was 80% likely that we would see nothing due to cloud and that it would be a minus 8 wind chill with 60kph wind gusting 80.
    He asked if anyone wanted to get off the bus and try another day.
    One brave couple put up their hands, which then allowed the rest of us to also do the same. In the end, everyone got off the bus.
    Instead he recommended the Tama lake walk, still 6 hours but not as high up, so better weather. He suggested we go straight away, as we were already up.
    So we fought off the urge to go back to bed and drove to the start of the walk. We were on the trail by 5.30am. It was a lot like Dartmoor, cold, windy and only about 40m visibility from mist and cloud.
    We only saw another 2 couples all the way to the top.
    As we got to the top, the clouds started to part and we got some sunshine. Still very windy on the high ridge with great views over the upper and lower lakes.
    Very slippery underfoot from the small volcanic round stones.
    The weather got better and better as we walked back to the town where the camper was parked. Once back we made a plan to head to lake Taupo about an hour north. As the weather was still not looking good enough to do the crossing for the next few days. 15 mins in and it was bed time! Couldn't stay awake so we both had a nap in the back for an hour.
    Cruised up to the main town to find a non existent camera shop and then found a campervan site on the edge of the lake for wine, noodles and an early night.
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  • Day41

    Day 41/72: sledging and Tongariro

    December 7, 2018 in New Zealand ⋅ ☀️ 11 °C

    We woke up, as promised by Peter (who ran the campsite) with a loaf of warm bread outside the door. It was wonderful. After the fun of rafting the day before we had signed up to do sledging with the same company. It was just me and Tom and 2 guides in a group, and we hiked to the same stretch of river that we had rafted the day before, only just below the huge waterfall. We watched a few rafts come down the waterfall: one flipped over and no one managed to hold on. Amateurs.

    Then we jumped in the water with our sledges and flippers and kicked our way down the huge rapids. It was so much fun, diving under the rapids and getting pulled around. Our guides pushed us into the insane bits of the waterfalls and cruised ahead to catch us when we eventually got spit out.

    At the end of the stretch of river they announced we were going to do some river surfing. This involves going straight for the rapid from underneath, and balancing on the bit where the water falls down the short waterfall on your sledge. Absolutely great, and we both nailed the flip the first time, something the guides were impressed with.

    One near drowning incident and one swollen and huge nose (Toms- very amusing) later, we got back on the bus and headed back to our van. After buying Tom a bag of peas to put on his face, we started the drive to Tongariro: the mountain area we are walking from tomorrow to do the Alpine Crossing. The drive was beautiful; going past Lake Taupo and the mountains in the background.

    When we got to the campsite we both decided to go for a shorter walk to warm up for tomorrow, so headed out on the trails to a waterfall about 2 miles away. The trail was beautiful and the sky was blue and cloudless.

    After a huge dinner, we settled in early for the night. Another action packed day ahead of us!
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  • Day98

    Wandertag

    January 30 in New Zealand ⋅ 🌧 14 °C

    Aufgrund des regnerischen Morgens starteten wir gemütlich in den Tag bevors dann zum Waitonga Falls Track ging. Der Track führte zu einem 39 Meter hohem Wasserfall, welcher der höchste im Tongariro Nationalpark ist. Gross hat er aufgrund des wenigen Wassers nicht ausgesehen. Zurück beim Camper musste ich mich zuerst aufwärmen, denn nach eineinhab Stunden im Regen waren meine Hosen durchnässt. Kaum im Whakapapa Village angekommen waren wir bereit für die zweite Wanderung; der Taranaki Falls Track. Der etwa 6 Kilometer lange Weg führte uns über Alpine Grasweiden und grüne Wälder. Den Gipfel vom Vulkan Ruapehu konnte man leider aufgrund der Wolken nicht sehen. Morgen geht die Wandertour weiter, sofern unsere Beine noch mögen.Read more

  • Day150

    Noch 1 Woche....

    June 3, 2019 in New Zealand ⋅ ⛅ 6 °C

    ... und dann bin ich hier weg.

    Weiter geht es nach Wellington. Da möchte ich gerne arbeiten für 1-2 Monate bevor es auf die Südinsel geht.

    Diese Entscheidung traf ich vor einigen Tagen.
    Ursprünglich wollte ich ja bis Ende Juli bleiben doch haben folgende Umstände:

    - seit 4 Wochen zu 95% nur schlechtes oder mindestens trübes Wetter
    - so gut wie keinerlei Gesellschaft oder Kontakte
    - insgesamt „relativ“ wenig zu tun

    dazu geführt dass ich Ende Mai wirklich am Ende war.

    Und soll mir keiner sagen „Beschwer dich nicht“.
    Manche kommen damit klar, ich nicht. Aus diesem extremen Tief haben mich meine Mama😘 und meine beste Freundin😘 rausgeholt und zu guter Letzt auch mein Chef der mir den finalen Schubser gab indem er sagte, dass ich nicht bleiben muss wenn ich nicht will.

    Heute war seit mindestens 2 Wochen mal wieder ein wunderschöner Sonnentag und ich konnte auch mal wieder fotografieren.

    Schicksalsberg und Erebor mit Schnee
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  • Day76

    Gollums Pool & Taranaki Falls

    January 18 in New Zealand ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    Der legendäre Tongariro Crossing Track war uns dann doch zu viel wandern😬. Mit unseren angefressenen Kilos haben wir uns nicht genug fit gefühlt und abschreckend war auch, dass es schon um 5 Uhr los gehen würde😱😴. Der ganze Track dauert zwischen 6-8 Stunden, insgesamt 19km.
    Deswegen haben wir uns Gollums Pool (aus der Szene von Herr der Ringe) und die Taranki Falls angeschaut. Wir sind in 2h auch 6.2km gewandert und das hat uns dann gereicht🤪. Also die Gegend ist schon super hier, ich glaube hätten wir noch mehr Zeit dann hätten wir uns auch ans Crossing gewagt. Aber wir haben ja noch ein paar weitere Highlights auf dem Plan und leider nicht mehr soo viel Zeit! Los gehts in Richtung Roturua.
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  • Day74

    Whakapapa Village

    March 9 in New Zealand ⋅ ☁️ 12 °C

    Was hatten wir für ein Glück gestern! Unser Puffertag für das Tongariro Crossing sieht sehr grau aus. Genau vor uns die Vulkane Tongariro, Ngauruhoe und Ruapehu. Wie man sieht, sieht man nichts.
    Also machen wir einen faulen Tag im Besucherzentrum mit Film, Broschüren und Souvenire kaufen.
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  • Day13

    Tongariro

    November 27, 2019 in New Zealand ⋅ 🌙 12 °C

    Highlights des Tages:
    - Das Hotelpersonal, das dir (schon wieder) sagt, dass du richtig Glück mit dem Wetter hast und es ein toller Tag wird:)
    - Mit der Gondel hoch hinaus zum höchsten Café Neuseelands. #Whakapapa #kaffeepäuschen
    - Wenn die Wanderung durchs tröge Vulkanland des "Tongariro National Parks" schöner wird als erwartet.

    Lowlights des Tages:
    - Der Kellner, der im Snobby- Schloss beim Abstellen deiner Tasse seinen Finger in deinen Kaffee tunkt.
    - Der unendlich hässliche, künstliche, mit einer blinkenden Lichterkette vollbehangene Weihnachtsbaum in der Hotellobby.

    Erkenntnisse des Tages:
    - Die Gondeln hier haben Ledersitze und bodentiefe Fenster.
    - Für alle, die ihren Job satt haben: Schnapp dir einen Ring aus einer Reifenrutsche und eine Schaufel. Fahr hoch zum "Whakapapa". Baue eine Rodelbahn aus den letzten Schneeresten. Teste und optimiere sie. Hoffe darauf, dass die 50 Meter irgendjemand cool findet und Geld fürs rodeln ausgibt. Werde "Slidebahn-Optimierer". #bewirbdichnochheute:D
    - Ende November: Die Skisaison ist beendet, Wanderpfade werden für den Sommer hergerichtet. #verkehrtewelt
    - In der Alm im Skigebiet gibts unter den Tischen Ablagen für Mützen, Schals und weiteres Zubehör. #schonwiedercleverdiekiwis
    - Ein Vulkan schaut unfassbar friedlich aus, wenn er nicht aktiv ist.
    - Wenn man hier wandern geht, sieht man ziemlich viele Steine und kaum einen Baum. #imhochsommerwenigerschön
    - Sonnenbrand auf den Knien ist unangenehm.
    - Beim Wandern grüsst man sich halt.

    Frage(n) des Tages:
    "Das hat der jetzt nicht wirklich gemacht, oder?!"

    Fazit des Tages:
    Wenn du die Wahl hast zwischen dem "upper way" und dem "lower way", geh nach oben. Deine Anstrengung wird belohnt.
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  • Day29

    Hike to Taranaki Falls

    March 2, 2019 in New Zealand ⋅ ☀️ 57 °F

    After the big hike yesterday, we stretched our legs on an easy 3.5 mile hike to Taranaki Falls. Along the way, we could see views of the volcanoes we hiked around yesterday on the Tongariro Crossing. Heather and other wildflowers were in abundance!Read more

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Whakapapa Village

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