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Mr W, Prince, the well-known electrician, arrived in town on Saturday from Lake Te Anau, where he has spent the last six months. He was commissioned by a number of gentlemen to report as to the attractions of the district from a tourist point of view, and has returned deeply impressed with the many and varied attractions it possesses for the lovers of the grand and the beautiful in nature. Consequent on his report, it has been decided to provide, at the southern end of the Lake, suitable accommodation for travellers in the shape of a largo hotel. We have been favored with a look at the plans, which disclose a handsome design—one quite in keeping with the picturesque surroundings, and at the same time fulfilling all pratical requirements. The area of ground secured will enable the promoters of the concern to lay off pleasure gardens, in which a lagoon in the vicinity will, when the work of ornamentation has been completed, form an exceedingly attractive feature. Its waters will also be utilised in generating electricity, the intention being to light the hotel by this means. Although a good deal of delay has occurred in connection with tho granting of the site, it is hoped that the hotel will be ready for visitors by the time the Dunedin Exhibition is opened, when a large number of tourists may be expected. Tho little steamer placed on the lake by Captain Brodrick, under circumstances that would have daunted all but the most persevering and energetic, has proved of great service, but Mr Prince is convinced that the most suitable means of conveyance on inland lakes is an electric launch. Its cheapness, tho ease with which it can be worked, and other features make it far superior to the ordinary steamboat for such a purpose. The Lake offers splendid facilities for such an adjunct. The lagoon already referred to is fifty feet above the level of the lake, and it could be readily turned to account in generating electricity for charging the accumulators or 6tor»go batteries in the launch. In conjunction with the hotel and launch another idea is entertained—that of establishing a regular service once a week from Mossburn, the present railway terminus, to the Clinton River, at the head of the Lake, on the lines of a passenger train, so that persons living at a distance who wish to make the trip would know almost to an hour the time that would be occupied —in a word, uncertainty would be exchanged for certainty, the only disturbing element being, of course, the weather. The terms would be fixed at so much per day. The tourist would be taken possession of, so to speak, at Mossburn, and attended till his return from the Sounds, the sum paid including all hotel, coacb, boatirig, and other charger. The traveller would be relieved of all trouble with these matters en route, and would be quite free to enjoy himself to the top of his bent. The idea is, to put it briefly, to model the service on the lines so familiar to Cook's tourists. If anyone came along during the "off" days they would, of course, have to make the best terms possible. Under the new syptem tho pleasure-seeker would know beforehand how long the trip would occupy and its cost, and it is hoped that when this is possible the district will have a great many visitors during the coming season. But this is not all. At present the track from the Lake to the Sounds takes about three days. It is rough, and the journey involves more or less of hardship. It is understood, however, that a much shorter route has been discovered—possibly the one used by the Maoris in olden times. It is said that the journey from lake to sea can be covered in about ten hours, and if this is the case it would be well worth the while of the Government or the local body interested to offer a suitable reward to the finder of the "short cut," and so make it available to the public. The arrangement might be drawn up in this way "No pass, no pay." It is understood that the Union Company intend to establish a regular service next summer, despatching steamersf rom Greymouth to the Bluff via tho Sounds every week, so that, taken all together, there will be no lack of facilities for visiting a district that is worthy to rank, in point of natural beauty, with any in tho world. " You don't need to go prospecting for scenery up there," said Mr Prince in the course of a conversation with a member of our staff; " but there are other things worth looking tor," saying which he laid before us several very likely looking specimens of coal, taken from two different seams—one of the gaseous nature, and the other partaking more of the lignite form. Its quality remains to be tested; its quantity is practically unlimited, one seam having been traced from the level of the lake to the summit of a hill 2,000 ft high, the outcrop occurring in both places. The opinion has long been held that there was copper in the district. Traces of it have been found in various places, both at Te Anau and Manapouti, and quite recently the outcrop of a lode of copper was found. Two samples of copper, one being oxide of copper and the other sulphate of copper, were brought down by Mr Prince, and have, with the other minerals, been forwarded through Mr H. Feldwick, M.H.R., to Dr Hector for assay and report. This "find" was obtained in a place exceedingly difficult to reach—from a precipice about 150 ft above the level of the lake, comeatable only with the aid of a ropo ladder. One block, weighing about half a ton, and which might be almost correctly described as being a mass of oxide of copper, might, Mr Prince thinks, bo detached with a charge of dynamite and secured as a trophy for the Dunedin Exhibibition, where it would form a striking ad v'er tisement of tho mineral resources of tho district. Mr Prince has also brought with him samples of tin stone. He is not a miner or mineralogist, andhissole or jtct in bringing down the mineral not company promotion, but to try and inspire others with more knowledge and experience to go and do better. His firm conviction is that the district is' metalliferous, and Hince a great part is totally unexplored and nearly all unprospected, tho presence of one or more good mining men might load to its hidden treasures being disclosed. He states that Captain Brodrick will be glad to give every facility to anyone desiring to try their hand at prospecting, and will undertake to convey j them in his steamer to any point at which they may wish to land. Now is the very best time for work of this kind, the lake being calm and the creeks low. Since Mr Prince reached town great interest has been shown in the minerals already referred to, and it is to be hoped that this may lead to something practical being done. Mr Prince informs us that there are comparatively few rabbits in the district, and that the ferrets are very destructive to the native game. Mr R. Henry, who has lived for a number of years in the district, and who is a very keen observer, has repeatedly | called attention to the matter through the Presß, and it would be well if something were done to give effect to his suggestions I oa the subject.

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Bibliographic details

LAKE TE ANAU., Evening Star, Issue 7937, 19 June 1889

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LAKE TE ANAU. Evening Star, Issue 7937, 19 June 1889