Tongariro National Park is one of only a few UNESCO ‘mixed’ cultural and natural World Heritage sites, famous for its spectacular active volcanoes, endemic vegetation, and cultural heritage. At 2797 m, Mt. Ruapehu is North Island’s highest peak and supports New Zealand’s northernmost glaciers. This field trip will include accommodation at a local lodge, a full-day (~8 hour) mountain walk known as the ‘Tongariro Alpine Crossing’, as well as a soothing visit to a nearby geothermal pool. Alternatively, a range of shorter walks (~1-4 hr) are also available. It is a five hour drive to Tongariro National Park, and guests will depart by coach from Wellington on Friday, February 10th, returning in time for the symposium icebreaker on Sunday, February 12th. The cost per person will be approximately $350 NZD per person, depending on the type of accommodation selected. Field trip registration must be carried out via the IGS website as part of the conference registration process. Spaces are limited.
The coach will leave from Platform 9 of Wellington Railway Station at 10 am on Friday 10th February. Coaches will be marked with the conference logo and the words ‘pre-conference field trip.’ Platform 9 is a 5 minute walk from Rutherford House (click here for directions to Platform 9). Please be on time or the coach may depart without you!
Please find here the itinerary for the pre-symposium excursion. It is very important you read this.
The Icebreaker, sponsored by the University of Otago, will be held on the Mezzanine floor of Rutherford House, the conference venue. Refreshments and finger food will be available between 5 – 7 pm on Sunday 12th February. Delegates can also use this opportunity to complete their registration and collect their conference bag.
MID-CONFERENCE FIELD TRIP
On Wednesday 15th February, we will visit Martinborough in the Wairarapa, approximately 90 km east of Wellington, across the Rimutaka Range. This region is well known for its sunshine, fresh produce and fine Pinot Noir wines. We will stop en route to examine the remarkable geology and geomorphology of this region. The conference fee includes transportation to/from Wellington by coach, wine tastings and a meal in Martinborough.
Coaches will leave from Platform 9 of Wellington Railway Station at 1.15 pm on Wednesday 15th February, returning to Wellington by approximately 9.30 pm. Coaches will be marked with the conference logo and the words ‘mid-conference field trip’. Platform 9 is a 5 minute walk from Rutherford House (click here for directions to Platform 9).
The banquet will be held at Macs Brewery on the evening of Thursday 16th February. It will include a 3-course meal in this spectacular location on Wellington’s waterfront.
POST-CONFERENCE FIELD TRIP – Organizer: Dr Heather Purdie
A 4-day field trip will be organised to immediately follow the conference. The field trip will depart from Christchurch at 1pm on Saturday 18th February. This departure will be from the Geography Department, University of Canterbury (corner of Forestry Road and Arts Road, Christchurch) at 1 pm, followed by a second pick-up stop from outside of the International Antarctic Centre on 38 Orchard Road adjacent to Christchurch Airport, approximately 15 minutes later (we suggest that people are ready by 1 pm). A walking path (5 minutes) to the International Antarctic Centre is clearly signposted from the airport terminal, and it is marked by penguin feet on the pavement! The field participants will spend 3 nights based at Aoraki/Mt Cook village. On Sunday 19th there will be a guided walk up the Hooker Valley to view the Mueller and Hooker Glaciers, taking in the majestic alpine scenery, and tales of early exploration en route. On Monday 20th we will go for a cruise amongst the icebergs on Lake Tasman and engage with local scientists about their research on the highly dynamic Tasman Glacier. There will also be opportunity for participants to take a scenic flight around Tasman Glacier and the summits of Aoraki/Mt Cook and Mt Tasman (weather-dependent, at own cost), and there are a number of other walks and activity options in and around the village. We will depart Aoraki/Mount Cook on Tuesday 21st at 1 pm; arriving in Christchurch around 6pm. Accommodation is bunk/dorm style and includes breakfast and a packed lunch each day. There are a variety of dining options (self arranged) for evening meals depending on taste and budget. Cost per person will be $450 NZD (includes coach transport to/from Christchurch, 3-nights accommodation, breakfast/lunches, and boat trip on Lake Tasman). Field trip registration must be carried out via the IGS website as part of the conference registration process. Spaces are limited.
Participants will need to organize their own transport from Wellington to Christchurch (1 hour flight, >10 flights per day, see http://www.airnewzealand.co.nz/ and http://book.jetstar.com).
Note: participants are welcome to arrange more expensive accommodation at Mt Cook village, with the cost of participation adjusted accordingly.
MORE ABOUT WELLINGTON
Wellington is the capital city of New Zealand. Known for its quality of life and consistently featuring as a top destination on tourism hit lists, Wellington is affectionately known as the ‘coolest little capital’. It is a dynamic small city of approximately half a million residents, well known for its culinary scene, coffee and microbrewery culture. It has a strong university and government research sector, and several hundred earth and atmospheric scientists are based at the Wellington campuses of Victoria University, GNS Science, and NIWA.
Wellington is situated at the southern tip of the North Island of New Zealand in a hilly, harbour-side setting. Nature is close at hand; pockets of temperate rainforest, penguin and seal colonies are situated within the city limits. Outstanding mountain biking and sea kayaking can be found within a few minutes of the city centre. Oriental Bay offers good swimming in fine weather (30-minute walk from conference venue).
February is a lovely time of year to visit Wellington. The weather is at its warmest, and most settled; mean daytime temperature is 20°C, and rarely exceeds 25°C. Overnight temperatures average a cool 13°C. It is also the best time of year to enjoy New Zealand as a whole.