Monday, 1 February 2010

Landslips and Late Running

The impact of the rains on the landscape here can be dramatic as much of the countryside is still just that, countryside, uncultivated and untouched by the ministrations of man. Where the countryside and man meet it is not always possible to control the impact of the elements. Today we were to drive from Rotorua to Napier and set off with the day in front of us when we heard a road report telling us that the road from Taupo to Napier was closed. The overnight rain had caused a series of landslips that had blocked the road. For those of you unfamiliar with the roads in this part of New Zealand there is only one alternative route to the Taupo/ Napier road. It goes through Palmerston North and involves an extra four hours on the road. Time was required to think about the situation so we stopped off at Huka Falls to kill some time and ponder our short list of options.

Huka Falls

Entrance to the Falls

The Falls are a popular stop off for many of the bus trips that tour the area and we had the opportunity to consult with the local experts who informed us that there was a possibility that the road would reopen but that the predicted time for this was now well past. They advised stopping in Taupo until there was further news.

Having enjoyed our diversion to the Falls we waited out the road crews by swapping authors with the local bookshop owner and taking coffee. It was with some relief that we heard from a passer by with his ear stuck to his mobile phone that the road had just opened. We hit it post haste.

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