- Departing Kinloch Marina
Ian truly loves his job and taking people on our three-and-a-half-hour Adventurer is the highlight. Your day begins as you climb aboard our seven-metre catamaran in the Kinloch marina, some twenty minutes from the Taupō Township.
Once out in the bay, Ian gives you a quick rundown on where you're headed, then smiles as he pushes the throttle forward, causing Taxicat to surge up onto the plane and you're off.
The north-western parts of the western bays are where waterfalls abound. Nosing onto the beach at Kotukutuku landing you'll disembark and make your way up a bush-clad trail following a stream which tumbles its way over rocks, down the ravine before flowing into the lake. It's not far and you can hear the falls before you see them and beautiful glimpses of the bay can be seen from the trail on your way up.
The next two waterfalls are experienced from the boat, the first tucked in a rocky corner, but standing on the front deck you can get your hand into the falls as Ian noses the boat right in.
The second is Otupoto falls, a majestic waterfall that tumbles down a shute carved into the cliff and on into the lake. Stand on the bow as Ian pushes Taxicat closer into the spray at the base of the falls.
Cruising south now, along rocky cliff lines that plummet from high above you into the depths of the lake, you will come across the beautiful Waihaha bay, a long sandy beach at the end of the Waihaha valley on route to one of Ian's favourite places, Te Papa bay which protrudes out from the corner of two cliff lines and if it weren't for a stream bubbling out of the rocks in the corner where each cliff meets, there would be no bottom to see. But! Over hundreds of years, the stream has washed tons of sand into the lake creating a sandy bottom about an eighty-mitre radius from the corner just below the surface. The perfect spot to anchor and enjoy a swim in the crystal-clear waters.
Next up is a mysterious hidden ravine where Ian noses the boat in, and in, the bush closing in around you. Then out and around the point to the escape cave which has its own story.
From there you head across the bottom end of the western bays to the mighty Karangahape cliffs which tower hundreds of feet above the Lake as if guarding the southern end of the bays, where time seems to have stood still, seemingly impervious to a changing world. A place where nature rules.
Having travelled just under 50 k/m, you arrive back into Kinloch marina.
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