Looking for Water

Jul 30, 2008   //   by myrakelly   //   water  //  4 Comments

Today, in the midst of a storm I went looking for water. Inspired by Daniel Vitalis, my raw vegan buddy and I drove out to the Petone Aquifer also known as Te Puna Wai Ora or Spring of Life to collect water. At the site there is a set of vessel shaped sculptures, one a fountain and the other with taps providing pure untreated artesian water direct from the aquifer below. I had been on a hunt for a local spring and this was the next best thing I could find. From what I understand the difference between spring water and aquifer water is this: an aquifer, according wikipedia, is an underground layer of water-bearing permeable rock or unconsolidated materials (gravel, sand, silt, or clay) from which groundwater can be usefully extracted. A spring is where water from the aquifer meets the grounds surface.

Te Puna Wai Ora was designed by New Zealand artist Louise Purvis to symbolise a water oasis. What a perfect place to collect water from! Two of my favourite things art and water! So how does this magical drink get from the ground into this sculpture? Well, the water originally comes from the Hutt River where it makes it’s way to the aquifer starting up in Taita Gorge. Over several years it make it’s way through said aquifer (layers of sand gravels and boulders confined by impermeable layers of silt and clay) until it eventually meets up with the Petone foreshore. It actually seeps up through the seabed of the harbour all the way out to the mouth of the harbour!

We managed to fill two 20 litre non-leaching plastic containers and a couple of extra mason jars each in the pouring rain and we weren’t the only ones there either. It’s a busy place! You can really taste the minerals in there. Seeya later tap water. Next step, vortexing…


  • I was super excited to read your blog post. THIS IS WHERE I DRIVE TO COLLECT MY WATER FOR THE WEEK TOO!!!!! I fill up lots of 1.5 litre glass bottles I have collected but this isn’t the most convenient method. I was looking for a huge glass bottle to fill but the trouble is my kids would have a hard time pouring out their water. I have been leary of getting a plastic container after all their bad publicity. Are you able to tell me where you got your “non-leaching” container and if it has a tap?? Thanks!!!!!! and keep posting – I love your blog 🙂

  • Hi Chris, thanks for reading! I bought the containers at Plastic Box on Marion Street and they have a few kinds of taps that fit onto the containers. I looked up the plastic type number online and it said it was the non leaching kind, suitable for storing water etc. But I think glass is always better. So I am still on the lookout for glass too!

  • […] packed spinach, 2 cups of frozen strawberries and about 500ml of pure artesan water from the petone aquifer blended til silky smooth. It sounds like a lot, but it’s less than a third of my calories for […]

  • Hi, I saw some great big glass vessels with lids and taps in a shop on jackson st. Might be a bit big to fit in the fridge but when I saw them I thought they’d be great for storing this water. The shop was up near the clock tower and called creative coffee or coffee creations or something along those lines.

    Enjoyed your post. Thanks

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