Cue the guys pulling up in the van for another day on the road. Tunes pumping, sun shining, sunnies on, singing & dancing to the music & enjoying the views. Perfection!
Our first stop was the Te Waikoropupu Springs* (Te Pupu) the clearest spring in the world. It is just 7Km from Takaka & has a little bush walk. The water looked amazing & I just wanted to jump in. You are prohibited from touching the water here to prevent contamination. It has underwater clarity of 63M horizontal visibility – now that IS clear! My pictures don’t do it ANY justice. Sorry.
I love this laid back cruising where we stop as we wish, see where we fancy from the signposts & explore on a whim.
We stumbled upon Aorere Goldfields Track** which was the site of a gold rush in the late 1850’s. I really wished we had a guide to describe what the area used to be like. I found an interesting eyewitness account online, Tarakani Herald newspaper article***, by a digger based at Aorere for 4 months. It’s a fascinating occupation & one I would like to read up on.
We walked uphill for almost an hour stopping at a beautiful stream & caves. I couldn’t climb down the cave due to my slippery flip flops & (sadly) overly cautious nature. The cave was really impressive! As soon as we stepped out of the humid rainforest towards the cave the temperature instantly dropped. It was eerie, chillingly cold & damp. The guys explored the cave for a while & found glowworms. I instantly regretted not joining them…..
My advice is to wear decent footwear, bring a head torch & if you’re a mountain biker – the track looks awesome!