New Zealand Learning Adventures
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Social Studies / Humanities in the zone
 

This a remote isolated mountain region demands a special type of people and settlements to cope with the severe mountain conditions. 

Studies:
W
e learn about the special aspects and adaptations of human activity among high mountains,  These include farms, roads, railways transport, recreation and settlements. 

History
For about 800 years Maori used the trails to access jade.

1860s European settlers opened one trail for horse draw vehicles to access gold. 

1900s The railway shortened the old coach journey from 3 to 1 day. and was use for passengers and moving coal and timber to Christchurch.

1920's The second road was opening for Now modern vehicles and industries to the north.

2000s completion of huge highway viaduct travel time 3-4 hrs.


Arthur's Pass Great Alpine Hwy

 
Great Alpine Highway
This crossing of the South Island began as a horse drawn coach road.  It is the steeper, higher and shorter of the alpine two Alpine trails in the zone.  Its special features include, karst lands, Arthurs Pass, the National Park,  Otira Gorge and a giant viaduct. more>

Lewis Pass Alpine Highway

Lewis Alpine Highway
The northern trans alpine crossing accesses Hanmer Springs geothermal pools, white water rafting and coal mining areas.  more>

Arthurs Pass Settlement

Arthur's Pass township
Workers for the rail project and now highway maintenance teams and tourist stay here. The area around the town is National Park land and its information centre that explains the human activity with the development of the alpine trails. We see the adaptations needed for high mountain communities. 
 

Mountain farming

High country farming 
Near the Alps, we find tough independent people.  They farm tough breeds of animals and cultivate resilient grasses all to best able to withstand violent snow storms and dry searing summer sun of the high mountain areas.  more>

Tourism
Tourism
The two highways provide visitors with magnificent views of the majestic Southern Alps, and access to the award winning, tourist highway.  We explore local transport systems, attractions and facilities provided for visitors and discuss ways the zone's tourist attractions might be economically improved. 

 Information Centres

Information Centres
The quality of New Zealand's information centres is outstanding.  They provide information on different subjects of interest. The Arthur's Pass National Park HQ the centre helps us find the places of interest and understand the nature we see.

Conservation 

Conservation 
Alpine flora and fauna struggle to withstand the  violent weather and extremes of the mountain environment. They are beautiful and unique in the world.  Their tenacious hold on life can be easily be destroyed. We witness vast areas of mountains where plants and soils have been lost.

 Transport

Transport
Two spectacular roads cross over the Southern Alps.  In addition to these, a very popular railway also crosses the Alps with its own magnificent viaducts, bridges and tunnels.

Giant viaduct

Giant viaduct
Near the Arthur's Pass this magnificent structure stands over 100 feet above the alpine river.  The viaduct was built in the 2000s to bypass the unstable valley walls and ensure the important highway remains open. 

Otira Gorge

Otira Gorge
Discover some incredible engineering feats solving almost insurmountable problems for road builders.  SCARY.   This section has to cope with winter snows the relentless destructive forces of ice along with viscous river erosions, gigantic rock slides, earthquakes and enormous rain deluges.
 

Map Reading

Map Reading
With clear identifiable natural features, students can experience feature identification, orientation and compass use.  KANES plan the study on the current level of knowledge and skill of your group.

Maori Culture

Maori Culture
In order to access the valuable jade, pre European Maori folk used the various trails through the mountains. In this zone we add to our cultural understanding by seeing the steep land, the wild rivers and  weather Maori people faced to follow these trails.

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