Friday, January 16, 2015

Tongariro Crossing II

Discovery Lodge cabins and Mount Ngauruhoe

Chateau Tongariro and Mount Ruapehu
A visiting cousin seemed like a good reason to walk the Tongariro Alpine Crossing a second time. Actually, I wanted to run it, but I was vetoed. There are not a lot of accommodation options near the Tongariro Crossing. We opted for a cabin at the Discovery Lodge. They are slightly bigger inside than they appear. Next time, I am going with a bigger budget and staying at the nearby Chateau Tongariro. Maybe Nico can come.

Steven Lasko climbing Mount Doom
Because my cousin is an experienced mountain climber, and also because he is somewhat of a Lord of the Rings fan, and also, also because 19.4 km is just not long enough to walk for some people, our hike had to include an ascent of Mount Ngauruhoe. Hobbits aside, climbing Mount Ngauruhoe is less fun that in sounds. It is steep, sandy, and really, really high. 

When the clouds clear, the view from the top (or near the top for this picture) is unbelievable.
The most emerald of the Emerald Lakes

                                                 ` Total walking time was a little over 11 hours. I am so running next time.

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