Pig's Ear Park and Other Adventures

Month: November 2016

Herekino Forest

Is where Nik discovered his mother is a fraud, but I had warned him hills and I are not compatible…

Lady from the motel took us to the start of the 16 k walk thru this forest to Diggers Valley Rd. First shock was the time allowed to complete this walk, nine hours!!!

So we started, and I stopped for a breather after the first ten steps  and continued to take what  I called mini stops  about every five minutes  but only uphill!!!

We walked up hill and down damn dales for the next six hours. Hit about 400 m  and when we reached a sign saying it was another  four hours to Diggers Rd or 2.5 to  Pukepoto. We opted for the latter as there was also another nearly 200 m to climb…

We hit Pukepoto, all lovely down hill just after 5 pm having walked for nearly 8 hours.

Highlights today were, white rata flowering in the distance, kanuka in bloom, rewarewa flowers on the ground, two stands of kauri trees, two tom tits, gray warblers was the predominant birdsong, a few tui calls AND rosellas!!!

Really not many birds around at all and no other walkers at all, just muddy patches were they had bashed there way thru.

There was loads of pig sign,gee they dig up the ground….BIG holes.

Lowlights, the incredible steep bits both up and down, falling over a gorse stalk and gouging my leg!!

Not being  able to persuade Nik to go surf casting tomorrow so I can lollop around, nah, gotta walk , there is a trout stream in there somewhere tomorrow plus I suspect back to the tent for two or three nights..

Last leg to Ahipara

I know it sounds it sounds petulant to moan about endless walking on a beach but it does become hard work..

However all done, well for now now, next lot of beaches is I think, Paihia briefly then? Know Orewa and the Takapuna beaches are in there somewhere…will seem like childs play after this lot…

A really late start, nearly 12, ready to go at 9  but the tide was not, right up to the dunes about every fifth wave…so wait wait.

Only 17 ks but wind in our faces and sand as well, full frontal sand distribution today. Glad I have the thermal gear, wear that and a woolly jumper. I am sure it will get warmer.

No excitement today just plodding, a real bed at the end.

GLad to see my parcel had arrived but just starting to like my pack as it lightened up now have to fill it up with the next lot of food. Nik arrives tomorrow pm and the bush adventure starts the next day.

Abbie sets off tomorrow at 7.30 for Whangarei, her mission to walk 90 mile beach accomplished, like most of the people I have met, we never expected it to be quite as tough as it was..At least I never got rained on at night💦(Guess who has finally found all those cute wee symbols)

Think down to the Bluff would be enough!!!!With a yummy lodge with deep baths, a heated swimming pool, good coffee, gourmet meals and cheap as chips , ah no, that is heaven…

However Ahipara seems cute enough, may walk out to the beach settlement tomorrow, staying opposite the camping ground not too far from the school, not heaven..


Te Araroa Day 2 ,3 and 4 almost to Ahipara

To the Bluff
Up early this and away by 8 am. Abbie still hanging in there …Josephine , a French girl was also at the Twilight Camp site, she is RUNNING the trail, thought I was daft…
Finally get to see 90mile beach, always thought it started at Cape Reinga, na, at least 15 ks on, make that hard k’s..
So up and down, round and round and after 10 ks finally onto the beach. Final descent was on more beastly stairs. A counted them, over 300 steps. Legs not quite so jelly like.

This was a long hard day, sand blowing across the beach and the frequent nasty shower, just left my wet weather poncho cover on.
High sandhills to the left and the Tasman Sea to the right. A had two huge blisters under her toes so took her boots off and walked in the sea. She looked a sad wee picture trudging along. In the a m we met a man going up the beach in the classic ute sans dogs, said he would be back down about 3 pm, we decided we would cadge a lift but by 3.10 nada so off we set for the bluff. No cell phone coverage
for much of the beach and plan b could not be implemented, this was to ring the lady at Hukatere Lodge and ask her to come and get us..Nope , not happening.
We walked and walked and by 6 pm still could not even see thev dratted Bluff so decided a night in the dunes was the answer.
Followed a stream up into the dunes for a few hundred metres and found a good spot. It had now stopped raining but plenty of drifting sea mist..
Cooked up a curry from my collection , plopped in a boiled egg, yum, finished off with dried apricots..
In bed by 8 pm. next morning up early, sun shining, muesli and coffee for brekkie, getting the hang of the stove. Ready to leave by 8 am, knowing we had another long day ahead, but for me, a bed!!!!
Just as we were doing our final phaff around, a voice from up the creek yells’show us your tits!!!!!’ DO not think he meant mine!!!
We did not reply, but glad I was not there on my own.How long had someone been there???
Would have seen my bare bum, good luck to him!!

To Hukatere

So onwards to Hukatere, we stopped at the Bluff camping ground, we would never have made it the previous night as it was about 5 ks from where we stopped and Mr Apple said we had done 27 ks..
NEedless to say I was as stiff as a board, very nasty..
NIce day though and we met up with four Amerucans, two had done the Appalachian trail!! PLus two Getmans who had badly blisted feet, unusual for Germans to make a miatke about gear…
Had my first Magnum icecream in years, already taken in pants getting loose so icecreams are on the menu !!!
Lodge was ok, bit tired but we were fed and watered forfree!!!
Had a terrible night with back spasms, thanks Pahoia, old strain from hard yakka , does not happen often thank heavens, yet to have a good nights sleep.

To Waipapakauri
Only 17 ks today, Sunday so we dawdled.
Nice to begin with then the wind started, i have sand everywhere, when we got to Waipapkauri I had a little dusting of sand on the side facing the sea..
Met up with our man from yesterday who offered
A a ride on his new quad bike which was on the back of his ute..Backwd up to a sand bank and drove it off, Abbie had fun, i checked my phone…
MOtel here is Ok, not having to do evwrything at ground level is a huge plus.
Loads of skylarks above the dunes and young Molly hawks learning how to fly, funny as.
Saw a dead baby folphin just as came onto Twilight Beach the other day…
Long post today promise will ho back to 300 words tomorrow.

Te Araroa Trail 1

This trail has been seeping into my consciousness for sometime. Seemed a good compromise to do some of it ,it is 3000 ks long , rather than the shorter much more expensive ‘Great Walks’
Mind you by the time I had bought;tent,sleeping bag,mattress, new pack, new boots and new walking sandles plus a bucket of expensive dehydrated food plus a stove to cook same on, I was beginning to query the wisdom of freedom walking. Unfortunately there is no other way to do many parts of this trail.
Plus I had to get myself to Cape Reinga. Flew, actually felt like I had paid a part payment on the plane, to Kerikeri, then had to buy a return ticket on a tour bus to Cape Reinga…
So finally after spending the equivalent of a smallish car i arrived at 1 pm at Cape Reinga with a 22 year old English girl called Abbie.
Just added this…had a Maori bus driver who dida Karakia for us,lovely.
There are loads of steps , 300 plus, A counted them, down to a beach, no, not straight onto 90 mile beach , that was still 20 tortuous k away…
My legs had turned to jelly by the time I got to the nameless beach and the tide was coming in, sod it, drowning would be quick as my pack would hold me under…made it to walk along a k of beach. A was sitting at the bottom of a large hill, we go up here, I must have looked stunned, she had already rescued ne as their was a fast creek at the bottom of nasty hill and as I was about to fall in she lept in and grabbed me….then she offered to carry my pack up the worst bit, about 100 m, I was contemplating dragging it or throwing it in the creek and going back to the bus to use my return ticket…
Suffice to say we then walked for another six hours thru a barren landscape up and down up and bloody down to Twilight Camp, yes we arrived at Twilight to a nice wee Doc Camp, had toulets, plus a nice shelter and a tap.
About 7.45 by this tme, threw up the tent, inflated the mattress, shovelwd some dried fruit in threw off my clothes and crawled into my sleeping bag.
Day one done…oh for a b and b..and think about how I have moaned about them in the past….

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