Day 313 on the Road
Highest waterfall in the Tongariro National Park!
Today we are checking out the mighty Waitonga Falls in Ohakune. If you like this video, then you might want to check out more videos on our epic YouTube Channel!
Today we are doing an alpine hike to the majestic Waitonga Falls.
Today our activity of the day is only a few kilometres away from Ohakune. It’s the Waitonga Falls walk it’s a really awesome and short walk cos we really need a short one, if you remember a couple of days ago we did the Tongariro Alpine Crossing and our legs are still sore.
The Waitonga Falls Track is a short trail, only 1h20min to tackle tacking us at first through amazing mountain beech forest. Along the way we see loads of different birds and the vegetation is wild and wonderful and we just love that.
Believe it or not this is again another walk where the vegetation is surprising us. It’s the something we’ve never seen before especially those really intriguing ferns.
This ferns are really different than the ones we usually see. It’s really cool.
As usual, I am in awe in front of the amazing luxuriant vegetation it’s absolutely incredible how many different varieties and species of plants there are in every single walk and that’s why every walk we do around New Zealand still feels absolutely unique. We have done hundreds of walks around this country and we say that but every single one of our videos feels different.
It looks like, it looks so perfect. It looks manmade.
As we are making our way through this amazing beech forest, the vegetating is thinning the higher we go to slowly reveal amazing breathtaking views of the mountains.
Look at the mountain. It’s a pristine view of the mountain.
As soon as we step out of the forest we arrive on this amazing alpine wetland with a boardwalk crossing right through the middle of it. Right next to us as well we have amazing views of Mt Ruapehu which by the way is the largest volcano in New Zealand and it looks absolutely stunning from here.
Even if we don’t see a waterfall today the walk to see this view would be worth it alone. There’s also lots of different pools on this wetland some of the pools known as Rotokawa Pool and on a calm day unlike today cos it’s really windy, usually you can see reflections of Mt Ruapehu in these pools. It would be the perfect photo opportunity.
After crossing the wetland we are back into the forest again to see a lot more native wildlife including some really cute little birds which are super close to us. that’s the intriguing thing about New Zealand wildlife. They have evolved away from humans and land mammals that are likely to threaten them so they are not scared to come right close to you.
Soon enough, we arrive at the sign for Waitonga Falls but we are a little bit confused. All we see is a little bit of a stream next to us. The sun is blinding us so we can’t really see much so where the hell are these waterfalls?
All we see in front of us is a little bit of a rapid and I highly doubt this is the famous Waitonga Falls there must be something else so Laura and I keep looking around and after quite a wee while we actually finally spot them they were right in front of us all along.
So we have a tip for anyone that comes to the Waitonga Falls come in the afternoon. The later the better. You will be able to see them without the sun right in your face.
But Laura and I are determined to get ourselves an awesome picture of this waterfall after all, it is actually the tallest waterfall in the Tongariro National Park so we are gonna be finding a way to take a shot.
Struggle your hard SASS out of the way and try to get a better angle. It works as well.
Oh my God that’s absolutely beautiful.
The Waitonga Falls is 39m high and there’s loads of different sections to the waterfall as well there’s this towering one that comes all the way from the clifftops cascading onto multiple different bits of rock and there’s a little bit of a side waterfall as well surrounded by gorgeous and lush moss.
Needless to say, Waitonga Falls is an amazing picture opportunity and we do spend a long time here looking at the various different formations of the waterfall taking way too many photos, and soaking in those amazing waterfall views.
In fact, Laura is taking that many pictures and spending that much time in front of this amazing waterfall that I’m getting the time to go live on Facebook so I grab my phone and join the conversation with you guys. If you guys didn’t know yet we are on Facebook every single day so join us it’s @backpackerguidenz
Look at this waterfall even. It’s amazing.
Although the Waitonga Falls is only about an hour and 20 minutes walk away from the Ohakune Mountain Road it’s actually part of the Round the Mountain track which is a 4-6 day hike going right around Mt Ruapehu and it’s actually a really awesome alternative to the Tongariro Circuit Great Walk if you want to do a mountainous multi-day hike around awesome volcanic landscapes.
Because we are doing 365 activities in 365 days we only have time to do one activity per day and we are making our way back on the track now back toward the car park getting more of those amazing forest views along the way.
Tonight we are spending one more night at the Kings Ohakune which has been our accommodation for this portion of our trip. It’s an awesome place and on top of that they have their own bar. In fact, it’s a burger saloon and there is no way we’re missing out on that so we are joining them for dinner.
The Kings Ohakune is a texas style saloon bar it looks really awesome and inside we don’t just find a lot of awesome memorabilia we also find a ton of locals and it’s perfect because tomorrow the weather is supposed to be super rainy as we are leaving the Ohakune region to get to the Timber Trail and we need to find out some awesome pit stops and there is no better people to to ask than the locals. They’re telling us all about a really well hidden waterfall called the Tawhai Falls it’s a really short walk so in case it’s raining we’re gonna be able to get back to the car really quickly but I don’t know much more about that because after that we did shots.
After doing some shots we are tucking into some amazing pub grub we’re having chicken wings, we’re having the famous Duke Burger, calamari and all sorts of really amazing and we go to bed a little tipsy.
Can I sleep on this tonight. It’s actually quite skinny underneath.
We’re having some calamari, and chicken wings, you know just proper delicious pub grub and then with that we are hitting the sack. Then with that we are heading straight to bed it’s not far from the Kings Bar.