The Myth of the Mountain
The story goes that in the days when the earth was young there were four mountain warriors: Tongariro, Taranaki, Tauhara and Pūtauaki. Also among them was the beautiful maiden mountain, Pīhanga. The warrior mountains fought for her affections and after many days and nights Tongariro emerged victorious.
The defeated mountains decided that they should leave Tongariro’s domain. Their quest was to travel as far as they could before dawn, when they would be fixed to the spot. Pūtauaki headed east and by daybreak reached his present position at Kawerau. Tauhara was not in too much of a hurry, looking pensively back at Pīhanga; he only reached the other end of the lake. Taranaki went west and still looks back, longing for the day when he might return to avenge the defeat.