The rains began in Hamilton at 1.55pm and by 3.53pm the umpires had seen enough.
Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor made centuries on a rain-hit final day of the second Test to frustrate England and secure a series win for New Zealand. He promptly swept Root for a four and two sixes to bring up his 19th Test hundred and two balls later, the covers were being brought on.
England had hoped to force a fifth-day victory to level the series but their chances of doing so had vanished long before the rain arrived to wash out much of the last two sessions as Williamson and Taylor shared an unbroken 213-run stand for the third wicket to take New Zealand to 241-2.
Taylor is the 51st player in the history of test cricket to reach the 7000 run mark and did it in his 169th innings for the Black Caps.
The Black Caps captain, on 62 and attempting to save the test, was fooled by a delivery from paceman Jofra Archer and pushed the ball gently in the air to the England fielder at a short mid-wicket.
But while Archer was celebrating this apparent breakthrough with a scream, Joe Denly was looking down at the ball on the grass in front of him.
Pope was only behind the stumps in this second Test due to Jos Buttler's back injury and though he has been a wicketkeeper since school days, his lack of first-class experience - and thus a fully honed technique - means his back-up status on tour is one that England will likely park come their next series in South Africa. Somehow, despite it being an easier chance than most warm-up drills before the start of play, he had fumbled at knee-height and no one in the ground could quite believe it.
The tourists earned a 101-run first-innings lead after they were all out for 476 on the penultimate day of the second Test - largely thanks to Joe Root's sensational 226 which marked the Yorkshireman's return to form.