A Walk on the Wild Side…

Ohakune Sign

Day 2 of our Road Trip saw us going for another Bush Walk. I wasn’t sure if the Little Ones Legs would be up for it but they skipped out of the car like mountain goats so off we went.

Old Coach Road Sign

The Ohakune Old Coach road follows the road of the old bridle path that was finished in 1886. It was used for coaches to carry passengers and goods between the two railheads of the main trunk line from Auckland to Wellington in the North Island. You can still see the rock pavers that were added to the road in 1885 when it was updated to a dray road and so needed to be more durable.

Auck towellie sign

The walk begins with wonderful vews of farmland

Just like DevonLike Devon againThistle

I couldn’t help thinking of Devon with those lush, rolling hills and farm gates. Then, as we rounded the corner into the Kiwi bush we entered Hobbitville…..

Hobbitville

with towering rimu….
Tall Tree

the ubiquitous ferns…..
Ferns

moss covered trees….

Moss on treeNative Plant 2Native plant 3

and what I think might be Himalayan Honeysuckle or Leycesteria Formosa….but I could be completely wrong. I’m no Alan Titchmarsh I’m afraid….!

Native Plant 5

As we came out of the bush we saw the spectacular Hapuawhenua Viaduct that was built in 1907-1908 to finish off the main trunk railway.

Old rail track

I loved the symmetry of the design with it’s 13 concrete piers and it’s gracelful curves. It was designed by Peter Seton Hay, Superintending Engineer of the Public Works Department and has a Category I Historic Places status from Historic Places Trust. The viaduct is 284 metres long and at its maximum it stands 45 metres high. Impressively it was still in use until 1987 when the line was realigned and a new viaduct was built. A spectacular piece of railway engineering heritage even if you’re not the typical Trainspotter type of individual (and I’m not at all I promise….no navy anorack for me!!)

We also saw buckets….

Buckets

It was at this point that my family and friends thought I’d lost the plot (“Mummy, why are you taking photos of rusty old buckets?”) so we set off steadily munching jelly snake lollies.

Lolly Bribes

Ah lovely…..

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I do love a Road Trip

The summer just doesn’t seem to want to end this year. We’re into May and still enjoying warm temperatures and blue skies. Perfect excuse for a little road trip to end the school holidays. My lovely Sporty Friend had mentioned an event in the Tongariro National Park a while ago and we decided to Give It A Go with our hubbies and various little rascals. The Tongaririo National Park is a place of Exceptional Natural Beauty and this event enables you to cycle 48km, run 11km or walk 6.5km whilst enjoying the surroundings including the impressive (and not a little bit scary) Mount Ruapehu which is an active volcano; one of the world’s MOST active in fact. It translates as “pit of noise” or “exploding pit” from the Maori language. I thought the walk sounded like a Good Idea especially with little legs to encourage along the way. So, off we went.

Mt Ruapehu
Mt Ruapehu is there amongst all that cloud – honest!

I was a bit surprised at the pace everyone set – especially the older children in our group. I hung back to take a few photos of the beautiful scenery (and to snatch a sneaky breath!)

Walk view 3Walk View

Walk view 2

There was a real buzzy atmosphere to the event and the children got a lot of encouragement from other eventers. This gave me the warm fuzzies and made me Very Glad to have Made The Effort! My Crazy Friend ended up carrying her Small One up the final hill. A cyclist whizzed past her yelling “You’re the best Mum in The World!” Ahhh…. I love the kiwi people!