Karangahake Gorge is one of the historic/tourist place that is a good visiting spot for both local and tourist in New Zealand. The gorge is located a couple of minutes away from a small town of Paeroa, where a famous beverage L&P (Lemon & Paeroa) originated. South of Auckland, slightly above an hour drive without much traffic, the place is great for both sightseeing and maybe picnic. Flashlight is needed if the plan to go on trekking within the gorge due to dark mining tunnels; note that mobile phone flashlight doesn’t count as a proper flashlight.
The good part of this touristy place, there is no entry fee to enter the gorge. Depending on the route taken to trek, it can go above 2 hours.
There’s seems to have couple of abandon blocks here and there. Not sure what those blocks are for; the trek would take a while and its trekkers will be rewarded with a breathtaking view of the gorge.
After walking through the touristy trails, railway tracks and through the dark tunnels, one of the caving out which seemingly like a balcony will reward trekkers this awesome view. The weather is good for trekking but the lighting is a bit harsh for photo taking.
Here’s a panorama of the gorge which the bridge on the left joining two mountains together. The bridge is sturdy hence no worries for those who have phobia with suspension bridges.
The walk path do have safety rail in various places, but not all. Thus, those who walk the path need to look down on where they are stepping, otherwise one false step would be fatal. I for one who has been constantly looking upwards enjoying the view at times and forgot to look down. It was breezy and I could hardly break a sweat due to the chilling weather in NZ.
After completing the gorge, we visited the small town of Paeroa. There isn’t much there to see in the small town except taking photos of a big bottle of L&P in which a whole lot of tourist does that.
Some rookie advise/notes on photo taking at the gorge for serious shutterbugs. Personally, I feel lighting isn’t good for photos if to hike somewhere near the noon as the lighting has been harsh. Some areas in a composition tends to be overblown due to the sun position. My opinion on best hour would be somewhere before 10:00 AM, as I arrived and trek at 10:30 AM above. If there’s any advice for me, do leave a comment below.
This trekking thought me one thing about my camera, it cannot do panorama too much. Although it doesn’t complain on screen, the firmware automatically disabled the Super Steady Shot function silently within the camera and hence some shots would appear blur due to the feature being disabled. At times I had to check and turn the camera off for a couple of minutes for it to cool down and have that feature enabled. I suppose the sensor is overheated due to panorama shots taking.