Poolburn Dam

Poolburn Dam on Rough Ridge in the Ida Valley is isolated with rugged, beautiful scenery.

Poolburn Dam is a quiet,  exposed spot,  the surrounding land is very open and tussock covered. The hills around the lake have many interesting rock formations (and there are some rocks that rise to just below the surface in the lake itself so if using a boat be careful).

Poolburn, was the setting for the city of Rohan in The Lord of the Rings film trilogy. There is access to Poolburn Reservoir from either Omakau in the Manuherikia Valley (30 kilometres) or from Oturehua in the Ida Valley (43 kilometres).  There is also access from Paerau over the Rock and Pillar Range (24 kilometres), but this  “dry-weather” road should only be negotiated by four-wheel drive. However in saying that we did take our ageing Holden Commodore station wagon over there one summer!! Luckily it was very dry. The road does get quite a bit of 4 wheel drive traffic and this makes for deep ruts and boggy puddles. The road from Paerau via Poolburn Reservoir is part of the Old Dunstan Road that gave gold diggers access to the gold fields during the early days of the Otago Gold Rush. The journey from Dunedin to the gold fields took five days.  The high parts of the road are closed from early June to late September each year.

Serpentine Scenic Reserve is a spectacular high point on the Rough Ridge mountains which features historical treasures: a stamper battery, water wheel and church. Good 4WD conditions are necessary to get access.

In wet weather or when there is snow around it’s advisable not to go on your own, the road can get very boggy and you wouldn’t want to get stuck up there!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Our first caravan – very cute and comfortable  but not robust enough for us! We decided to sell it after about 18 months(it had gone a lot of places it really shouldn’t have gone) before we did a “Top Gear ” and completely destroyed it. If you haven’t seen the Top Gear episode where they destroy the caravans it’s worth a look – very funny!!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

 

 

There are some cribs and huts around the Dam

Just caught the last of the light in this photo and the ones below.

 

 

 

 

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 Serpentine Church OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Serpentine Scenic Reserve has a feeling of remoteness and offers viewing of intact historic relics. From the ridge, you decide to turn left or right to see either the Serpentine church or the water wheel and stamper that sit within the ‘mining complex’. 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s