It was still raining when we unloaded the car. The day was unpleasant and it felt quite cold in the house. We lit the fire immediately and I put the jug on. It was only me plus kids and Sue who got to the house first while the others joined in the next day. Sitting down quietly in front of the fire and watching the kids rambling through every corner of the house. It's funny to see them doing that. Just like cats who moved into a new home. Sniffing every corner, searching every button and going through things. My son kept telling me that he liked the house, which was good. While they started settling down and playing with one another, I was sitting down chatting away with Sue.
We did not have any plan that day as we arrived just for afternoon tea (4 hours drive from our farm--make it 5 with small children), so we sort of preparing things like we normally do at home. Bed-making, brewing coffee, making tea, you name it. It was just nice to be able to stay at a house where everything you need is stored in the fridge and there's a lounge to sit around. It gives the homey feeling.
When we went out to search for information the days we advised to be able to go skiing or whatever we could do up on the mountain, the day started to go gray again. Rain and all. We decided to go to a garage out of Turangi because we really need to get the car checked as we caught burning smell during our trip to Turangi. The town is called Otarua, which is about 15 minutes out of Turangi. It took us about an hour to get it fixed and there was a magical thing happened. The gray clouds which were skirted the top of the mountain was lifted a little bit and gave us a clue what was stored up there. The white snow.
Back to the house, we walked along the river where we could see some people were trout fishing. It was unfortunate for us really because not many of them we could see as the rain made them hiding back to their lodges. Not at my luck to get a good capture of them as well.
However, the next day was quite alright. As the other troops had come, we kicked ourselves out of the rain and moved up to the mountain. It was still drizzling with a rhythmic of heavy rain every now and then during our drive up. Mount Ruapehu is situated at the Tongariro National Park where millions of red tussocks are massively spread on the ground. This park is recognized to be World Heritage Site. Although it was raining, I still could see the beauty of this park.
Up on our way to the day, I took a snap while we were driving. As you can see, the skirt of the clouds were too heavy to lift up. However, you still can imagine how beautiful it will be on a fine weather. I wished I could go up here again in Summer.
After we were shuttled by a bus from the car park 10, we decided to just do tobogganing and did not bother to go to the summit. The weather was unpleasant with lots of icy rain with thick condensation in the air. At the end of the day, the place was almost disappeared and our faces were slapped by mung-bean-sized ice which were coming with the wind. We were still tobogganing and my kids did not care of such weather. They just wanted to slide down. Woo Hoo!
Here are some more photos I took on our first day at Mt Ruapehu. If you click each photo, you will be brought to its description on Flickr. I hope you're having fun reading them.