Wai-O-Tapu and Rainbow Mountain
The trip that was pushed so I could join went first to some pools whith boiling mud and then to Lady Knox Geysir. IT has a natural eruption cycle of 18 to 72 hours. But they help nature to a more tourist friendly timetable with an erruption at a quarter past 10 every day by adding a solvent.
Regarding ownership of the land it is part of Wai-O-Tapu which is advertised as a thermal wonderland.
The colors of the different lakes in there are very strange. The neon green of one of the lakes there is unbelievable.
Unfortunately my lens fogged up right as I the sun came out.
The tour we were on had the option of getting dropped off the bus and picked up again later so you could do a tramp up Rainbow Mountain.
Legend has it that if the whole mountain has trees on it a new eruption of the volcano is about to happen.
As the last eruption changed the whole north island and connected quite a few islands there and was visible from China and Rome it might be better not to be there when that happens.
Luckyly there were still some places without trees.
Despite the lady on the bus calling us brave for trying the hike we got got up and back down quite easily and the rain only started when we were almost at the pickup point again.
There was a small shelter we only had to use for a few minutes until we were picked up.
The hostel had won some contest between the different places as to who sold the most tours. The price was a barbeque paid for the guests. So free BBQ for us tonight! Jippie: Free food!