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New Zealand’s inland waters: Lake Tarawera

June 1, 2010

When the last of the morning passengers had boarded the water taxi, the boat set off through the falling mist making its way around the lake, the first in its daily schedule. Only a group of ducks remained on shore: lined up like soldiers in the rain, resting from their morning feed, waiting for something to happen.

The mood on the lake was sombre that morning; a combination of unsettled weather and an unsettled history I was familiar with.

by Cate

Neighbouring the lake is Mount Tarawera. A volcano with attitude, destroyer of an old Wonder of the World — “The Pink and White Terraces”, a Maori village, and scores of lives. Mount Tarawera was never considered volcanic in both European and Maori history there were no past volcanic activities, no oral stories depicting a might fire; there was nothing. Until early one morning in June 1886, the mountain erupted. Tarawera had made its way into New Zealand’s history.

by Cate

Tarawera has been asleep ever since, but its stories and myths continue from within tourist spots like The Buried Village and information plaques overlooking the lake, Tarawera’s destruction has not been forgotten.

Despite its tranquil appearance through the camera lens, I couldn’t stop thinking about the possibility and probability of another blast occurring at some point in my life; and hopefully when I wasn’t around shooting pictures.

Could I live in this area knowing the mountain’s unpredictable nature?

Thankfully there are those who take life in their stride. Water sports and fishing are very popular activities on Lake Tarwera during summer, walkers frequent the numerous tracks during the day and holiday homes and mansions keep popping up in new and obscure spots around the lake — challenging engineers and builders.

Like the ducks that sit and wait, I’ll take the sideline away from the mountain, visiting it from time to time, wandering around the trails but that’s it.

by Cate

Lake Tarawera is located outside the city of Rotorua an easy drive if you have a vehicle. It can also be reached by bicycle, not too sure about whether you want to walk out there. Intercity also stops at the Tarawera Tavern, check its site for the timetable.

Caffeinated Traveller

  1. Jennifer permalink
    June 1, 2010 8:18 pm

    New Zealand is a favorite destination of mine, and when I go, I definitely like to stay in places that are less industrialized and offer more intimate and tranquil housing. The Grasmere Lodge has modern amenities but it’s a wilderness retreat, it even offers homemade cookies!

  2. June 1, 2010 11:38 pm

    thanks for your awesome blog cate!

  3. Lulu permalink
    June 2, 2010 3:33 am

    I love the pictures! Green is nice, don’t you think?
    There are around 150 active volcanoes in Indonesia, and only recently did I visit one of them. I was wondering how if the mountain erupted while I was there admiring her?
    Nature is indeed powerful.

  4. June 2, 2010 5:05 am

    Very nice review and nice pictures. Makes me want to go on holiday again:)

  5. June 2, 2010 6:38 am

    ” I couldn’t stop thinking about the possibility and probability of another blast occurring at some point in my life; and hopefully when I wasn’t around shooting pictures.”

    Haha! Hopefully not! Who would continue this fantastic blog?! 🙂

  6. June 2, 2010 12:03 pm

    biscuitjim, The Outerscene, Lulu and Chris,

    happy you enjoyed this post. Green is a good photo colour, can’t go wrong with nature and green. I didn’t know that Indonesia had that many volcanoes – that’s alot of unsettled land.



  7. June 2, 2010 2:04 pm

    Hi Cate,

    Thanks for your very interesting post and very nice photographs.
    I agree with you to watch out for angry mountains.
    And thank you for looking at my stuff and for your kind comment.

    All the best!

  8. June 3, 2010 8:38 am

    And, thank you Jan!

  9. June 4, 2010 11:32 am

    This place looks gorgeous, worth taking the risk to visit. A sneaky volcano can be intimidating though. I don’t think I would leave near it but I’d visit it often enough to get great pix like these!

    • June 4, 2010 3:38 pm

      Thanks Rosalind, even though the weather was a little grim, the shots game out alright.

  10. June 14, 2010 8:37 pm

    If only I had a greenback for each time I came here.. Amazing article!


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