Tag Archives: Mt_Ruapehu

Quiet space

Although I do not do it often enough, I enjoy the quiet times I create to be in contemplative prayer—not praying for specifics, but simply being with God in praise and thanksgiving. It is good to uncluttered my mind.

“Prayer is the breath of the soul, the life energy of the spirit. It is the story of the interplay between God and us. It is the link between the inner and the outer life. It has its own rhythm.  It is its own reality. There is no formula for it beyond the need to nourish it with both words and silence.”  Joan Chittister

Mt Ruapehua, Tongariro National Park, North Island, NZ

Tongariro National Park from the air

Meg and I have visited the Tongariro National Park three times during our stays on North Island with our family.  Obviously, it is one of our favorite places.  To be in the center of three active volcanic mountains — Ruapehu, Ngauruhoe, and Tongariroare, the summits of which are each sacred to the Maori people — never ceases to awe and stimulate our senses. This national park was donated to the New Zealand government  in 1886 by the local Ngati Tuwheretoa Maori tribe in order to protect it permanently.  It is the oldest national park in New Zealand and the fourth oldest in the world.
On this visit we enjoyed absolutely still and perfectly clear skies and made a flight over the volcanoes.  As always, we enjoyed seeing country from above that we had seen up close through earlier hiking on the Tongariro Crossing. And, having stayed once at the Chateau Tongariro, we loved seeing its setting beneath Mt Ruapehu.

Mt Ruapehu crater lake, Tongariro_National_Park

Ketitahi_Springs, Tongariro_National_Park

Volcanic Flights, Mt Ruapehu, Tongariro_National_Park

Ngauruhoe, Tongariro_National_Park, Volcanic_Flights, Tongariro_Crossing

Mt Ruapehu, Chateau_Tongariro, Tongariro_National_Park

Crater lake Mt Ruapehu, Tongariro_National_Park

Mt Ngauruhoe, Tongariro_National_Park

Red_Crater_NZ, Tongariro_National_Park, Tongariro_Crossing


Tongariro National Park

In 1887, Te Heuheu Tukino IV, then the paramount chief of Ngati Tuwharetoa, gifted the sacred peaks of Tongariro, Ngauruhoe, and part of Ruapehu, North Island, to the English people of New Zealand. This decision kept the land from being divided up and preserved the mana (prestige) of the Tuwharetoa people.
The original deed of gift created an area of 8,000 acres  consisting of three small circles around the main peaks. Over the years that followed, large-scale purchases of land were made by the Crown, so that when the Tongariro National Park Act was passed in 1894 the area was approximately 65,000 acres. This Park was the fourth in the world to be established.
Ruapehu and Ngauruhoe are two of the most active composite volcanoes in the world. In 1995 and again in 1996 Ruapehu erupted in spectacular fashion, sending clouds of ash and steam skyward and mantling the surrounding snow fields and forest with a thick film of ash.

Mt Ngauruhoe serves as Mt Doom in Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings.”  The Mordor scenes were filmed on the flanks of Mt Ruapehu, and the scenes of Gollum fishing were filmed at several nearby streams and waterfalls.

Château Tongariro, Mt Ngauruhoe

Tongariro National Park, Mt Ruapehu

Tongariro National Park, Mt Doom, Mt Ngauruhoe

Tongariro National Park, Ruapehu

Tongariro National Park, Mt Ruapehu

Tongariro National Park, Taranaki Falls

Tongariro National Park,

The Safety of God

Love, forgiveness, hope, mercy, grace.  All these attributes come together when we move ever more deeply into truly trusting God.  My brother is now in the New England Rehab Center.  It is a good place, with dedicated staff, and Greg is moving more strongly toward trust.  His doctor has strongly urged him to cease his worrying, so Greg is receiving good advice s well as physical care.

Tongariro National Park, North Island, NZ

 Fire formed New Zealand and raised it from the sea at time recorded only in Maori mythology.  Volcanoes shaped North and South Island, and the process continues today.  Tongariro National Park is the country’s oldest park. Located in central North Island, it has been acknowledged by UNESCO as  one of the 25 mixed cultural and natural World Heritage Sites. The park consists of three volcanoes: Ruapehu, one of the most active in the world (at least 60 since 1945), Ngauruhoe, the site for Mt Doom in Lord of the Rings, and Tongariro. The summits of each of these mountains are “tapu” to the Maori. In fact,the creation of the park in 1886 came about when the local Maori tribe that lived in the area donated the land to the government to prevent its exploitation by the European settlers and insure its protection.

The Bay View Chateau sits under massive Mt Ruapehu, and looks over Lake Taupo, pictured below. (You can click on these images to enlarge them)