Thankyou to the DOC maintenance team working on fine tuning the supports on the swingbridge at the end of Koura Street.
This bridge and the Red Hut Bridge were originally erected by the NZ Army as a project for CMT(Compulsory Military Training) engineers. Now they are maintained by DOC.
Over the last five years, their use has increased more than ever before as the anglers access tracks are now part of the Tongariro RIver Trail – a 15 km loop catering more for tourist bikers.
This track is now over 100 years old – probably the oldest trail in NZ. Now all that is needed are tourist information panels along the far side – the TRB – to inform tourists of the rich history of the Tongariro River Pools.
Until they were rebuilt after the major 1958 flood, a flying fox provided the only access to the TRB (True Right Bank looking downriver) above the Red Hut to the Fence Pool. The photo below is of Robbie Cadogan fishing back in the 1950’s and pulling the trolley across the Red Hut Pool looking down to the Shag Pool. It looks very different today flowing at about half that volume..
A separate smaller bridge provided anglers access up the TLB by crossing over from the old SH1 across the Poutu River. That bridge has now been removed.
The DOC maintenance team advised both swing bridges were rebuilt again about 1980-81 but the next big 100-year flood in 2004 dealt to them again. Photo below of the Koura Street bridge repairs after last major 100-year flood in 2004 flood by Jared Goedhart.