10 January Town Pools i.e. Bridge to Hydro Pools
12 January Middle Pools i.e. Kamahi to Red Hut Pools
18 January Braids i.e. below Bridge Pool to Braids car park.
19 January Lower River – from Duffs to Reeds Pools.
22 January Lower Pools – below Reeds
26 January Upper River – Waddells and Poutu
27 January – Upper River – Boulder Reach
30 January – Upper River – Big Bend Pool
(On right is the walking track up river beyond the Blue Pool)
So today the images are from further up river from Blue Pool to Fence Pool.
Again, the major visual change is still is the impact from milling the pine forest along the entry road at the end of 2017 – which has nothing to do with the flood or the fishing…
(On right is Andre Clarke from Auckland determined to find a trout in the murky conditions at Sand Pool)
In very hot conditions I was looking forward to a leisurely stroll up river shaded under the canopy of bush and trees leading up to the Fence Pool. Alas, most of it has gone as well. It makes the track up there much longer and any scenic qualities are ruined by the milling.
The friendly pigeons and tuis have gone too.
For anglers the main loss is the side access to the Reef. This may be developed eventually but I could not even find any remains of the old apple tree which marked that side track.
Otherwise the main pools – Sand Pool, Whitikau Pool and Fence Pool all look much the same. The Tongariro was still flowing high around 35 cumecs and recovering from a storm on the previous Friday when a slip in the upper gorge left the river pumice stained and dirty.
Toilet at Blue Pool – To many it will be a relief to hear that Taupo fishery rangers installed a new toilet at the Blue Pool car park on the Tongariro River earlier this week.
This concludes the access and facility upgrades linked to the forestry operations undertaken late last year. While the character of the access road and parking areas has changed considerably, the scenic values of the river and the quality of fishing remains very good. Anglers have returned in good numbers, confirming the popularity of the Blue Pool car park to access this beautiful part of the river.