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Mt. Ruapehu

Listed under Volcanoes in North Island, New Zealand.

  • Photo of Mt. Ruapehu
  • Photo of Mt. Ruapehu
  • Photo of Mt. Ruapehu
  • Photo of Mt. Ruapehu
  • Photo of Mt. Ruapehu
  • Photo of Mt. Ruapehu
  • Photo of Mt. Ruapehu
Photo of Mt. Ruapehu
Photo by mikelyvers
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Mt. Ruapehu is New Zealand's most frequently erupting volcano. It was responsible for the Tangiwai Disaster of Christmas Eve 1953, when a crowded express train from Wellington to Auckland happened to pass beneath Mt. Ruapehu at the worst possible time – when the natural dam of volcanic ash that had held back the hot acidic crater lake collapsed, causing a massive lahar (volcanic mudflow) that rampaged across a dozen or so miles to meet the train just as it crossed a bridge, killing 153 people. More recently the eruptions of 1995 and 1996 were the most spectacular of the last century in New Zealand. Smaller eruptions from Ruapehu's crater lake are possible at any time and may occur without warning. The volcano is most easily climbed from the Whakapapa ski area where a chair lift brings one to within 2.5 hours hike of the crater. The views of the Ngauruhoe, Tongariro, and Taranaki volcanoes and Lake Taupo are magnificent on a clear day.

Written by  Mike Lyvers.

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