Mount Ruapehu is the highest volcano on the north island of New Zealand. Its Volcanic status is currently active and the most recent eruption was an open vent eruption in 1996. Before that was the more expolive and dangerous eruption in 1995.
Along with Ruapehu there are two other volcanoes in the Tongariro National park, they are Ngauruhoe and Tongariro. The most active of the three is Mount Ngauruhoe.
At the summit of Mount Ruapeehu is a crater lake. Which is partly the reason the 1995 eruption was so violent. The 1996 eruption was much less explosive because the 1995 eruption emptied the lake and there was nothing blocking the crater for the 1996 eruption. One of the most dangerous things about the mountain is the water from the crater lake. Slowly the lake fills and water has been ejected out of the crater and onto surrounding glaciers. Causing massive lahars. In 1953 a massive lahar went crashing down the Whangaehu River with no warning. Sometime around 10:15 p.m The lahar filled with ice, boulders and tonnes of water crashed into the weak old concrete pylons of the Tangiwai rail bridge. The lahar totaly destroyed the bridge and there was a train coming. A young man named Arthur Cyril Ellis tried to warn the driver by waving a tourch at the train. The train applied its breaks but not nearly soon enough. 151 people were killed.
The most unique thing of mount Raupehu is its two ski feilds, Turoa and Whakapapa. One of the best ski areas in New Zealand.
Mount Ruapehu is a very easy mountain to climb nearly all year round.
Its not a steep moutain it is basicly just a walk in the park. But when your at the summit the veiw of the three other mountains (Mount Tongariro, Mount Ngauruhoe and Mount Taranaki/egmont east of ruapehu) is quite breath taking.
As for climbing the mountain the most common and simple ways of climbing it are simply walking up past the two ski feilds. Not a hard mountain to climb.
Tongariro National park is located in the middle of the North Island. The access points are at Taupo and state highway one in Waiouru and Taumarunui on State Highway Four. A road that takes you around the Tongariro national park. Air New Zealand also flies to Taupo.
No Red Tape.
When To Climb
December, January, February, March
On the base of the mountain there is a superb hotel called the grand chateau. This place has everything from tennis to a nine hole golf cource. And even a cinema. They have a nice heated indoor plunge pool and a mini gymnasium.
The grand chateau is located under whakapapa ski feild. The largest ski area in New Zealand. Its situated 6km up state highway 48. From Taupo it is 100km to get there which is a 1.25 hour drive. From Auckland it is a 360km drive, which will take about 4.5 hour. From wellington its a 350km drive which will take about 4 hours. From the National Park Train Station its only a 15 minute drive.
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