Sunday, April 29, 2012

Under The Mountain

Theme song for this post: Going Underground

We marked ANZAC day on Wednesday by going to a mid-morning remembrance service, visiting a friends for (their) birthday tea and scones, then going up to Wright's Hill Fortress in Karori for a wander in the afternoon. ANZAC Day also marks 13 years since Fi and I got together, so it was nice to do something as a family. We finished up by having a mini-picnic (cupcakes and raspberry buns) on the lawn outside the entrance :)
I've been to the fortress a few times now, and while it is interesting to see how the restoration is going (especially compared to the first time I visited it in 1989), it can be a bit creepy knowing just how enclosed you are (besides it not being a particularly welcoming place in general). It still impresses me how hidden it is. Aside from the long empty gun-pits on the surface (in a nice piece of irony, the guns and turrets were sold post-war to the Japanese the place was built to defend Wellington from), and the external access portals, there is little hint of what lies below the summit of the hill.

Charlotte liked the wetas especially. The cool and dark is a perfect environment for them:
It is open about five times a year, and worth checking out by any Wellingtonians interested in the history of their city.

NB this post was meant to go up a few days ago, but I ran into some problems with bloggers new photo uploader insisting the images I saved in portrait were really meant to be in landscape, and thus posting everything sideways. Not an improvement when the old one never had any issues with it.


Maureen said...

This is cool! I enjoy going through dark underground tunnels. If I ever go to New Zealand, I'll have to plan my trip during a time when this is open :)

Janet said...

I took Owen up to the tunnels - he freaked out inside the tunnels, then when we got out they started firing blanks... not such a successful trip and we had to leave in a hurry....

Glad you had a good time though.

missrabbitty said...

don't you just hate it when a machine thinks it knows better than you!...i'm with charlotte. wetas are awesome...enclosed spaces, not so much.

Off-Black said...


Yeah, cavings a bit easier this way :) There are about 600 meters of tunnels and rooms to explore.

Stink! Yeah we had just come outside when they had another machine gun firing and the first round startled me too, and spooked Charlotte a bit. She got used to it though.

They had spiders too. Really big ones. Not a place you'd want to have a sudden power cut requiring feeling your way along the walls :) The first time I went there it really was BYO torch though. Lighting has improved somewhat since then.