Thursday, November 28, 2013


Volcanoes of the south wind
By Karen Williams

NOTE- Publication next Wednesday  6 December 2013

 A fascinating and comprehensive field guide to the volcanoes, volcanic features and dramatic landscapes of Tongariro National Park.

Approximately one million people visit Tongariro National Park each year, with around 80,000 completing the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, the country’s most popular one-day trek. With its handy size making it perfect to throw in your backpack, A Volcanic Guide to Tongariro National Park is essential reading for anyone who wants to get the most out of their trip.
New Zealand sits precariously on the collision zone between between the continental Australian Plate and the oceanic Pacific Plate, one of the most active tectonic settings in the world. Asettings in the world. The famous volcanoes of Tongariro National Park are located at the southern end of the Taupo Volcanic Zone – an area slowly widening as the Earth’s crust is stretched and thinned by the relentless forces beneath.
A Volcanic Guide to Tongariro National Park provides a comprehensive introduction to the area and the volcanic forces that shape and mould the landscape. It tells the turbulent history of the volcanoes, explains the inherent processes at work with beautiful photography and detailed diagrams and clearly identifies the volcanic features found in the park – vents, peaks and lava flows. The book also shows you where to find these features on the park’s famous walks and tracks, with a useful chapter found at the end of the book detailing the different walks available in the area, with information on duration, distance and difficulty.
Included are the post-eruption events of Ruapehu in 1995-1996, the long-predicted burst of the Crater Lake and safe passage of the lahar in 2007, as well as the Te Maari eruptions from Mt Tongariro in August and November last year. The book also updates the research work of New Zealand scientists, including the study of ash layers using improved techniques to refine the age of the volcanoes in the area.
An easy-to-read guide that is perfect for students, tourists and anyone with an interest in the area’s geology, A Volcanic Guide to Tongariro National Park is a profusely-illustrated, must-have for visitors to the area.
About the author:
Karen Williams is the author of Skiing on the Volcano and Ruapehu Erupts along with several other titles. Her latest book A Volcanic Guide to Tongariro National Park is a complete rewrite of Volcanoes of the South Wind, first published in the mid 1980s. After graduating from university, she worked for the DSIR’s Antarctic Division in Christchurch and spent a summer working as public relations officer/photographer at Scott Base in Antarctica. She has worked as a newspaper and radio journalist, and managed the Taupo Museum for many years. Karen is now a full-time writer, specialising in local history and natural history. She is also a longstanding executive member of Project Tongariro, a voluntary conservation society working in and around Tongariro National Park.

 A Volcanic Guide to Tongariro National Park
Author: Karen Williams
RRP: $39.99
Publication: 6 December 2013
Random House New Zealand

                                                     Photo above  by Peter Otway -  page 127

Photo left by Karen Williams - pp.162-163

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