We say goodbye to an epic week in Waitomo and say hello to an epic day in Raglan. Yes, we’re heading back to Raglan! Not only do we want to play with the new beagle puppy at Raglan Backpackers, but we are keen to try a new activity in Raglan that we didn’t get time to do last time: rock climbing and canyoning in Raglan!
After a morning of work, we leave Juno Hall backpackers in Waitomo and make our way back to Raglan, just a 1h20min drive (this time in the rain). We leave the cow-covered hills of Waitomo and enter the winding roads of Raglan, singing to some golden oldie tunes like “The Final Countdown”.
Ocean the beagle puppy is so cute she makes us want to die so that she is the last thing we see! (too far)?
Raglan looks a bit different from last time with a haze of fog hanging over it, but we’re happy to see some familiar faces back at the hostel, and… the PUPPY!!!!! Oh my god, Ocean the beagle puppy is adorable! So soft and squishy… Laura has been anticipating this meeting since the day she spotted the poster in the Raglan Backpackers a couple of weeks ago saying they hostel was getting a puppy. We don’t have time to play for too long though, as Gareth from Raglan Rock is coming to pick us and a few more people from the hostel up to take us on a canyoning/caving/climbing adventure!
Suit up for the stream!
We wolf down a lunch of sandwiches, a carrot and a banana each from the free food shelf just before Gareth arrives to gives us the rundown of what we are doing today. Because the weather is wet, why not continue in the wet theme? He is eager to show us a spot where we follow a hidden stream in native bush with a few obstacles along the way. Let’s do it!
We suit up with some base layers and wetsuits, hop in the van and get on our way to Raglan Rock’s secret spot. We say “secret” because this is quite a new tour, so not many people can say they have been here.
After taking various gravel roads, we arrive beside a grassy field. This really IS a secret spot, because we are not spotting any streams here! To get us warmed up before we set off, Gareth gets us to do a banana dance. It’s hilarious yet effective.
We are now pumped and ready to go! The six of us in our group follow Gareth under a wire fence (crawling under like the Great Escape) and over towards a flax bush. Here’s the stream!
The flax is your friend
There’s no messing about, “Get in!” Gareth shouts as he is already wading through the water. Of course, Laura, as always, goes first and the rest follow one by one. We follow Gareth down the stream, using the flax to keep balance as there are a few rocks to get over. There’s a concrete pipe up ahead, just big enough to fit a person in it. Normal people would walk around it… We float on our stomachs through it!
More flax fondling, rock rambling and the terrain is getting more and more complex, as we enter a forested area complete with waterfalls. We can’t imagine what it was like for Gareth discovering this place!