Letter received regarding road closure
I have been especially enjoying the mountain these past few weeks. I cant recall ever seeing so many people spread over the mountain. It could be because it is spring, or that the road is closed while repairs take place closing the road to traffic.
I spoke to a coach driver tonight. She was parked at the bottom, backed up adjacent to the toilets while her group walked up the mountain. There was room for just one bus in that spot. She was very relaxed, had walked up herself and enjoyed it. Some of her tourists stayed with the bus, it was their choice. She said there was plenty of time for passengers to walk up. She was under no time pressure to get the coach and passengers up and away. She could easily adjust the extra time in their schedule. She said many drivers do not enjoy driving to the summit, especially in the summer when it is busy. The road is narrow and difficult for bus drivers but the mountain is on their advertised itinerary so they include it.
Sometimes there can be 15 or so buses and they must queue by the 'big tree'. I believe this might be adjacent to the final right turn to the summit. But they all know the drill, how to wait, and use the turning bay. She observed that Mt Eden is the only remaining Auckland summit with access, so felt it would be a shame to lose it. She observed that it is great place for tourists to see all of
Auckland without having to go up the SkyTower, the only alternative, which many did not want to do.
She may have mentioned the cost of SkyTower access. There is a coach drivers newsletter which had announced that the mountain would be open again today. She was quite relieved to discover the road still closed.
She said some of the other drivers are older and less fit, perhaps would not walk up themselves. She would be quite happy if there were parking elsewhere for passengers to walk up the mountain.
She felt Mt Eden road was not suitable for parking, too narrow, nor the Takahe reserve parking area.
I mentioned the kiosk area and she said that would be fine, if there was room for buses to park there.
From Jeremy 19 Oct 2009