November 8, 2023 Zipline! (Day 42)

We had made reservations for the zipline over Okere Falls before we visited the area on Nov. 5. So today we got ready for our first zipline ever! We arrived at the venue and got suited up with our harnesses before noon.

Robert is all harnessed up and carrying his zipline trolley.

Our guides got our group of 8 all geared up and onto the shuttle bus and off we went the short distance to the start of the zipline tour. We started at the head of the falls and those folks who were planning on doing the raft trip afterwards went down the staircase to see the water rushing by the viewpoint towards the class 5 rapids over Tutea falls! We all continued on to the first of several ziplines.

Robert’s view of the river from the first zipline trip. A beautiful view of a huge tree fern and several rafts lined up ready to go over the 22 foot falls!

My view as I went down the zipline, a kayak and at least one raft had gone over the falls successfully!

After we went over 2 ziplines our guides had us “roll back” over Tutea falls in pairs to suspend over the falls and take in the beauty of the view.

As Robert and I hung over the falls we saw a raft come over the falls!

As we tramped through the bush from zipline to zipline (I think there were 4 total, with a suspension bridge also!) our guides gave us historical and natural history information. They described several of the bird species including the New Zealand pigeon, the Kereru (ke-RARE-oo), a chicken sized pigeon! We saw several perching and flying between trees in the canopy! They also pointed out the kawakawa plants along the path, and their medicinal value as an antiseptic, analgesic, and general rejuvenating tonic. They pulled a few leaves off for us to munch as we walked between the zipline sites. At a covered hut on the edge of the forest where they are planting native trees to rejuvenate the forest they offered us hot kawakawa tea to rejuvenate us! It was mild and herbal tasting. The leaf I chewed did numb my tongue just a little.

After our 2 hour fun and informative zipline tour we had a picnic lunch in the parking lot at the end of the tour and hiked back the 20 minutes to the Tutea falls observation point and the stairs to the caves that were closed on Nov. 5. Along the way we spotted more kawakawa, and I picked a leaf to munch.

The kawakawa is distinguished by the knobby trunk and the heart shaped leaves. The holey leaves have the best medicine because they pump the healing chemicals into the leaves that have been munched on by insects!

We took the staircase carved into the gorge wall to the cave at the base of Tutea falls and practically crawled through it.

We were told that at night the paths and the cave are lit up with glow worms!

At the base we were almost level with the river and we could see the rafts as they emerged from the drop over Tutea falls!

A raft that made it over the falls unscathed! The adrenaline rush must be incredible!

For videos click HERE!

We returned home to a relaxing evening and a fairly clear sunset!

The clouds grew and then shrank over the 15 minutes of our viewing them this evening!

3 Responses to “November 8, 2023 Zipline! (Day 42)”

  1. Sammy Says:

    Thanks for introducing me to kawakawa, and spurring me to look up glowworms.

  2. rmj Says:

    We haven’t seen any glow worms yet, mostly because we don’t want to drive at night!

  3. Sammy Says:

    I totally understand.

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