Has the eighth wonder of the world been Rediscovered?
131 years ago, travelers from around the world came to admire the geothermal springs of Lake Rotomahana in northern New Zealand. This natural marvel, hung on the slopes of the smoking mountains, laid in cascades of pink and white terraces, created by an unprecedented mineral phenomenon. But in 1886, this prodigy of nature was destroyed by the eruption of Mount Tarawera. At least, that was the accepted theory for more than a century.
Not so sure, says a group of New Zealand researchers. The latter claim that they have traced the coordinates of these ancient terraces, reports The Guardian. Better still: they would rest only 10 to 15 meters under a layer of mud and ashes amassed by the volcanic storm, the scientists say, in their study published in early June in the Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand.
“[The terraces] were never studied by the government of the time. So there was no trace of their latitude or longitude,” explains study director Rex Bunn to our British colleagues.
To find the area, regarded as “the eighth wonder of the world” by tourists of the nineteenth century, the researcher and his team analyzed the diaries of the Austro-German geologist Ferdinand von Hochstetter, who detailed the geography of the place before it was engulfed.
The hypothesis of the researchers remains to be verified. Excavations of the site will be needed, specify the researchers. Rex Bunn, who claims to have received numerous offers to conduct an investigation, is counting on a first budget of NZ $ 70,000.
He is currently working on a “voluntary team”. His team’s research, however, comes up against the findings of the GNS Science New Zealand Institute, which claimed five years ago that most of the terraces had been destroyed. However, another study conducted in 2011 using an autonomous submarine seems to confirm that some remains are still present in the lake bed.