Formed about 65,000 years ago, Mount Tauhara was not a violently explosive vent, instead slowly oozing a viscous dacitic lava. It is the largest mass of dacite within the Taupo volcano, whose material is 98% rhyolitic.
This is the Maori legend about Mt Tauhara:
“All the mountains, Taranaki, Putauaki and Tauhara were deeply in love with Pihanga the mountain that stands above Turangi at the southern edge of the lake. But Pihanga only loved majestic Tongariro. A battle erupted and the victor was Tongariro. He banished the others and Taranaki fled west, Putauaki fled north and is now known as Mt Edgcumbe. But Tauhara was sad and with a heavy heart he traveled reluctantly. When overtaken by dawn he had only reached the north eastern shore of Lake Taupo. Here he stands to this day looking mournfully across the lake towards his lost love, Pihanga.”
"Tauhara" is Māori for "slow mover".