Yesterday (the 14th Dec), we had probably the best day of our trip so far.
We are still based in the town of Taupo, which is pretty much slap-bang in the middle of North Island.
At 11am in the morning we took off, in our little flying boat plane thingymajig from the lake, and flew for around 40mins to our destination of a small river jetty at Orakei Korako, which is a geo-thermal park.
We had a rather swift walk around the park, breathing in plenty of hydrogen sulphide (think rotten eggs), ooohing and aaahing at the mudpools, geysers, silica ledges, and caves.
On the return trip back to the lake I got to sit in the front of the tiny plane (it only seats 5 or 6 including the pilot). A pretty amazing experience. On the flight with us were two fellow Brits Julian & Graham from the Hamble (a river that empties out into the Solent opposite the Isle of Wight), they suggest that we charter a boat and go and see some Maori rock carving and try our hand at a little trout fishing.
We chartered a rather modern looking craft called Stratus, skippered by local Kiwi Marty.
Firstly we headed out to visit the Maori rock carvings, which are all very nice and pretty… but created in the late 1970’s, so not quite what most people have in mind!
Shortly afterwards, Marty switched from the main engines to a little quiet outboard and set up three rods, explaining what he was doing all along. We were fishing at a depth or around 90 feet. After about 15 or 20 minutes of naff all happening, he handed me a “lead-line”, which of course spurred the fish on *cough*, minutes later we had a double strike with Julian & Graham both landing a trout each. The three lines were reset, and 10 minutes or so later it was my turn to land a fish.. woo!
On the return to harbour, our skipper kindly gutted and cleaned up the fish, which we then took into a local pub/restuarant as part of a “bring-your-own-trout” kinda deal.
To use the Taupo terminology… an Awesome day! 😉