Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Latitude 41° 36.8’ south Longitude 175° 17.4 East aka Cape Palliser

For Frank's birthday we took a trip to Cape Palliser on the east southern tip of the North Island (New Zealand).  The road to get there is a little mad but the reward is a beautiful rugged coast that is isolated and perfectly refreshing. The steep steps to the lighthouse made for an adventure that required a hand on the rail as gusty winds whipped by.  The ocean roared like a jet aeroplane taking off and blow holes next to the windy road required well timed walk by's!

More information about the Cape Palliser Lighthouse.

Position: Latitude 41° 36.8’ south  Longitude 175° 17.4 East

This light shone for the first time on 27th October 1897.  The lighthouse is notable for the 261 steps it takes to reach it.  When these steps were first built they were greeted enthusiastically as they replaced a slippery narrow path up the rock face that was especially dangerous at night.

The cast iron tower stands 18 metres high and 78 metres above sea level.  The light flashes twice every 20 seconds and can be seen for 26 nautical miles (48 kilometres).

The 1000-watt lamp operates on mains electricity with a diesel generator for standby power.  The light originally burnt oil as a light source and was converted to diesel generated electricity in 1954, and then to mains electricity in 1967.

The light was fully automated in 1986 and the lighthouse keeper was withdrawn.
The operation of the light is now completely automatic and is monitored by a computer and Maritime NZ staff in Wellington.