Monday, May 16, 2011

Geothermal Activity

Rotorua is a town in the only other area of the world that has geothermal activity like that of Yellowstone National Park.  The difference is that the various geothermal areas are privately-owned so you have to decide which features you would like to see the most.  Jake and I chose one that had numerous hot pools, mud pots, and a geyser like Old Faithful (well kind of like it....).  Its name was Wai-O-Tapu, Thermal Wonderland.

Notice the two of us in the reflection.

Here is some of the beautiful scenery that we saw.


At 10 am, we headed to a different area of the "wonderland" to see the Lady Knox Geyser.  This is when it got a little interesting for us...


The Park Ranger came out and talked about geysers and told us that this particular geyser wasn't very predictable.  He went on to explain that he would be adding organic soap to the geyser to make it go off for the tourists.  (Jake and I couldn't believe it.  For people from the Yellowstone Park area, you can understand our surprise that a Park Ranger would put something down a geyser to make it go off.  It seemed tremendously funny to us.)

Here is the park ranger carefully putting the soap down the geyser.

Soap bubbles!

And there she blows!

You can see Jake's excitement!

Kim wanted her photo taken in front of the geyser just like everyone else.

After leaving the "wonderland" park. we stayed in Rotorua for another night.  This time in a hostel.  We were able to dry out all of our gear from the night before so it worked out great.  Before leaving Rotorua, we stopped at the local thermal park that is open to the public.  

 The whole area is geothermal underneath so you had to be careful.

Jake posing next to some geothermal carnage in the park.  They tried to mark a new geothermal spot with orange cones.  They melted.

All in all, Rotorua was definitely worth the stop.

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