Saturday, October 12, 2019

Postcards from Lake Taupo

Kia ora, campers! I made the mistake of updating my operating system this afternoon and it's still doing something to my overflowing photo library, so here are a few snaps from today on Lake Taupo, between eating and doing last laundry and squeezing still more into my soon-to-be-checked suitcase.

Lake Taupo is a lake in the North Island of New Zealand. It is in the caldera of the Taupo Volcano. With a surface area of 616 square kilometres (238 sq mi), it is the largest lake by surface area in New Zealand, and the second largest freshwater lake by surface area in geopolitical Oceania after Lake Murray in Papua New Guinea.

This is a vast lake and we're staying on one tiny bay of it. We walked in the early light.

Harbor at Motuoapa

Lake Taupo is in a caldera created by a supervolcanic eruption which occurred approximately 26,500 years ago. According to geological records, the volcano has erupted 28 times in the last 27,000 years (ed. note: I'm guessing we'll be OK tonight).

Lake Taupo is a taonga (treasure or something special to the person) of Ngati Tuwharetoa from the Te Arawa waka. Ngati Tuwharetoa still own the bed of the lake and its tributaries. They grant the public free access for recreational use.[13]

Aotearoa: land of the long white cloud

After lunch we headed for the lookout, a short, mostly vertical walk.

View of wee Motuoapa

There are trees dripping with yellow fleurs in front of our little motel room deck. The tuis poke their beaks in them and the bumblebees are busy in them too. From this height they seem to be spilling light onto the lawn.

Here's one up close:

Still more spring to drink in before leaving the Southern Hemisphere.

The Queen of Flat Whites is exhausted from doing laundry, and this cafe is just across the street.

We got haircuts in Whanganui (clip clip here, clip clip there...).

 There's an enormous wall of rock behind our motel. It's very grounding.

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