On Boxing Day our daughter and her boyfriend flew up from Wellington to join us for a week exploring the Far North. As the weather looked pretty good we decided to take them on an overnight tramp along part of the Te Araroa Trail from near Mangamuka Bridge into the Omahuta Forest. Continue reading Omahuta Forest
After a couple of hours spent parked in the main street of Geraldine using the internet and eating lunch, we headed inland along a gravel road to a DOC camp-ground at Orari Gorge.
Continue reading Huatekerekere – Little Mt Peel
The rain arrived on Saturday morning as advertised, so we decided to drive to Greymouth and visit our friend Joy. Two days parked in the hot sun with almost no driving meant that our house battery had gone flat and the fridge defrosted, another good reason for running the motor for a while.
Continue reading Punakaiki
My last visit to Totaranui was almost three decades ago when Felicity and I tramped the Able Tasman Track. That time we just passed through this huge camping area, so it has been nice to spend a bit more time here.
Continue reading Totaranui
The alpine section of our trip is over, and we spent the morning descending steadily to the Wairoa River.
Continue reading Wairoa River
Today was a rather short day, because we reached Tarn Hut soon after lunch.
Continue reading Tarn Hut
The weather had improved by morning, but the whole area was under a blanket of white snow. There was more rain forecast for the afternoon so again we decided to make an early start. Continue reading Mt Rintoul Hut
About six in the morning, Felicity started making tea as usual, and suggested that we get going early to avoid rain forcast for later in the day. It turned out to be a good call. Continue reading Old Man Hut
Our voyage across Cook Strait turned out to be very pleasant, with the sea so calm I could almost have kayaked.
In December we are planning a five-day tramp in the Richmond Range with a couple of friends who have recently been trekking in South America, carrying full packs up over 5000 metres, so Felicity and I feel like we need to increase our fitness level significantly. Today seemed like a good opportunity to head into the bush out near the west coast for a hike.
Continue reading Goldie’s Bush
The final section of the Old Ghost Rd cycleway follows the Mokihinui River gorge past the Glasgow Range to the end of the road at Seddonville.
Continue reading Specimen Hut to Seddonville
Back on the cycleway, we made pretty good time following the South Branch of the Mokihinui river down to Mokihinui Forks.
There are a couple of kilometres of cycleway either side of Stern Valley hut, but it wasn’t long before we were back on a tramping-only route leading straight through the bush.
Continue reading Stern Valley to Goat Creek
In the morning, the valley below the hut was filled with cloud, but up where we were the sun was shining brightly.
Continue reading Ghost Lake to Stern Valley
As we were making breakfast in the Lyell Saddle Hut, we watched six kaka flying over the valley below us.
Continue reading Lyell Saddle to Ghost Lake
When it is finished (supposedly late 2015), the Old Ghost Road from Lyell to Seddonville will be one of New Zealand’s premier mountain bike rides. We decided to walk over it before it becomes infested with cyclists.
Tonight Felicity and I are staying in the Okaka Lodge, about 800m above the south coast of NZ, on the edge of Fiordland National Park. This isn’t your average tramping hut; we’ve shared a hot shower (which cost us $10) and purchased a bottle of wine to drink with our dinner. There are even 12v electric lights!
Continue reading Hump Ridge Track
We’ve spent a fantastic week tramping around the edge of the Cobb Valley. It was rather wetter than we hoped, but a good time was had by all.