10 October 2009
World's biggest carrot?
Just before arriving at Mt. Ruapeho in our previous snow adventure, we stopped by the town of Ohakune (population: 1,101 - 2006 census). Ohakune has a rich agriculture history, with the lands initially cleared for crops destined to feed local and American military troops. After the war, the lands were converted to rehabilitation farms for returning servicemen. Today, its agriculture heritage stands strong as it supplies important produce to New Zealand and various Asian markets.
On the eastern edge of the town, a lone giant carrot proudly stands as a testament to Ohakune's important vegetable industry. This 'monument' was erected in 1984. Ohakune plays host to the Carrot Festival when the town celebrates with street performers, games, shops, and loads of family fun topped with free carrot juice!
We had lunch here picnic-style in Ohakune at a nearby park. It's a beautiful place, must be a popular stop for tourists before heading off to Mt. Ruapehu.