River Valley & River Rafting Grade 5
20 Dec 2005
|Only four days to Christmas!
It's so unreal. I can't believe it's so close. I guess it's because it's so warm and in the middle of the summer. Ha ha ;-)
Welcome back to my homepage. I'm glad you found your way, and please leave me a message this time, it would be greatly appreciated.
Now to business!
Last time I updated the site was on the 15'th of December. Since then I have hiked a whole lot, mountain biked and river rafted.
In Taupo there is not a whole lot to do when it is pouring down like there was no tomorrow. It rained for many days and that meant no skydiving and no Tongariro crossing, as I have already told you.
But no way I was not going to enjoy the outdoors so I rented a good mountain bike from Rainbow Lodge, and went on a long drive to Aratiatia Dam. I took the road made specially for mountain bikes... Tough work. The first stage to Huka Falls was quite steep and with many highspeed downhill strecthes, some of them quite narrow and a bit scary. I just thought it was more or less the same easy way as the hike - but no no.
Anyway, I got there rather worn out, but decided to go the whole way to the dam anyway. The road was not anyway near as demanding from this point on, so no worries.
When I got there I found out I just missed the dam opening by 30 min, and had to wait an hour to get to see it. Then the rain started to fall, and it did not stop. I made it to a Volcanic Experience Center outside Taupo and went inside to have a break and some fun. It's was a pretty cool place with a real tornado simulator. Never seen one of those before. After that I went back on the bike and it still rained quite a lot and I got absolutely soaked, but that's okay.
After my 25 km biking adventure, I had a very sore behind, and took a day off. :-) aaaaah.
The day after I was leaving for River Valley. I small place in a deep canyon in the middle of no-where. But right next to the Rangitiki River.
It's a very cool river for river rafting, it has a gorge with around 10 grade 4 and 5 rapids. For those who don't know what I'm talking about I'll explain it.
The grade for rapids, places where the river drops a little (or a lot) over rocks, goes from 1 to 6 where 6 is unraftable like Niagara Falls for instance. Another factor is that the Rangitiki river is un-dam'ed so the water level rises and falls a lot during a single day.
The day after I arrived the water level was 60 cubic meters of water pr. second, and the limit for safe comercial white water rafting is 48... The river was insane! The next day the level had droped to some 43 cubic mecs, so we had a green light for rafting - YES!
The rain stoped and we had an awesome day on the river. My boat did not overturn, but others did. The owner of the rafting company crashed - twice! Pretty cool, and he had to buy the other rafters beer - only the guides though..
When it stopped raining I went for a hike in the surrounding area and met a lot of sheep. They followed me for quite a while and I had to tell them to go back... Did not work entirely too well. Hmm.. So instead of hiking I ended up chasing sheep :-)
Thats pretty much it, and now I'm in Wellington.
Thanks for dropping by, and please leave me a message. It's Christmas you know :-)