There were now two groups, making up 12 of us - all being together at the huts each night. The hut bookings
were made the previous September but the Oturere Hut had already been fully booked, so that is why we
stayed 2 nights at Waihohunu Hut. This meant the third day had an extra 3 hours walking, and because
of this 4 of our people changed to an easier Group B. The weather was generally fine but with cloud at
times, windy on Saturday with rain in the afternoon. Temperatures ranged from perhaps 15C to freezing
at night. Because of the long hot summer there was no snow visible on the mountains.|
We left The Bracken at 6:15am to travel to the Chateau (6.5 hours via Taumarunui incl breakfast and
stops). At 1pm we started our walk: 5 hours to Waihohunu Hut incl 1 hour lunch and stops.
reflected on the Cross: The Cost born by Christ; Emotional/relational impact of the crucifixion; Jesus
regarded as Lord above all; Fulfilment of over 300 Old Testament prophecies; All or nothing choice
Based at Waihohunu Hut, we did daywalks. We visited Ohinepango Springs 20 minutes
from the hut which appears to flow out of a cave: large quantity of clear waterflow. Also sighted a whio
or native blue duck. One group walked 1.5 hours south on the Ruapehu Circuit track and enjoyed lunch
overlooking a wide gorge and up to the brown/red peaks of Ruapehu – snow was absent. The other group
headed north for beautiful views of Ngaruahoe. Afternoon as rain set in we spent quietly in the beautiful
We tramped passed Oturere to Mangatapopo Hut, ascending to Emerald
Lakes and red crater of Tomgariro then descended southwest to the hut. Walking time 7.5 hours plus stops
1.5 hours. Our tramp started peacefully at 7am but when we reached the rim of Mt Tongariro thousands
were walking the Tongariro Crossing narrow top ridge northward - which was the opposite direction to
us. What to do? We avoided them by walking westward across the crater then ascended a spur taking us
up to the high part of the ridge near Red Crater. By 2pm the stream of day-walkers had ceased and we
were able to easily do the steep descent near Ngaruahoe and continue on down. Group B walked back to
Chateau then drove van round to Mangatapopo and walked in to that hut.
Ian reflected on Song
of Songs - Following the narrow path, Following the Good Shepherd, Keeping company with His sheep even
if you have lost sight of the shepherd.
Group B did a nature walk near the Chateau
and Group A walked 3 hours to Chateau (Whakapapa) carpark where we met Group B (11am), then drove back
to Auckland arriving by 6pm.
Ruth reflected on the titles: Lord – master of the universe; Jesus
– friend, humble servant; Christ – saviour, redeemer, bringer of peace (with God, each other and the
Two 5 minute on-track training slots were included. (a) Clothing for cold conditions:
balaclava, gloves (2 layers – glove and waterproof mitt). (b) Hazards in the snow, sinking in, different
conditions, cold, suddenness of snow storms.
Great Easter and great time sharing with friends
amid spectacular unique volcanic scenery. Everyone worked together in an excellent fashion.
$226.34 including can hire, petrol, huts, food, equipment levy