Yeti Walks: Hiking the Lonely Mountain

There is a rumor that Mt. Taranaki is going to be used as the Lonely Mountain in The Hobbit.  It’s no rumor that it stood in for Fuji-san in “The Last Samurai.”  It’s an amazing mountain.

I know because I’ve seen pictures of it.  But we never saw it in it’s glory on our 3 day hike of the Pouakai Circuit; instead we walked through rain and hail and wind and even some occasional sunshine.

The weather was bad enough on the second day that I didn’t even take my camera out.  We were all fairly wet and muddy but some hot tea and many hours of Catan made for a great afternoon once we reached the Pouakai Hut.

The huts were wonderful; warm, cozy, and dry.   Even with 12+ hours of drying by the wood fire, some of our clothes remained wet.  Discomfort and hypothermia weren’t the only dangers, though.

There are tales of flesh-eating snails that haunt the hills.  Apparently, in the early 20th century a circus elephant escaped a nearby event and wandered to Taranaki.   Legend has it that its chewed up body was found months later, covered in flesh-eating snails.

Luckily we avoided the crawling little beasts and suffered from nothing more than too much couscous for dinner.

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5 responses to “Yeti Walks: Hiking the Lonely Mountain

  1. I like this song. What is it?

  2. Wow, you brave brave souls! That was such a rainy weekend! Love the video!!

    • I read somewhere that Taranaki gets 8000 mm of rain a year. So I guess our weather was somewhat inevitable. Super glad that you liked the video–another one of Tongariro is coming soon.

  3. albrechtsebastian

    It’s not only a tale but the flesh-eating snails do exist! They’re called “Powelliphanta snails” and they only live in New Zealand.. I hope you will get to see the Taranaki Mountain on your next trip. There is a reason why it’s been used in movies!

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