Ahipara to Kaitaia – 15km (116km total)
Today was thankfully a shorter day. I had a lazy morning at the holiday park in Ahipara and even did some washing, although I’m not sure how much washing helps the smell. I updated this blog and instagram and checked out at 10am.
I then walked back down to the beach to take the obligatory 100km photo, because there was no way I was taking it the day before as the rain pummeled down on me.
It was then a road walk for the next three hours into Kaitaia. The umbrella once again came out a) to keep the sun off of me and b) to make me visible to the oncoming cars. I had read that there isn’t much of a shoulder to walk on for many of the roads in NZ and this was certainly true for this road. Well actually, there is a shoulder, but it is a steep drop off to a drain on the side of the road that you can’t walk on, without fear of falling down into the drain.
I do have to say, I might look like a crazy person with a bright red umbrella, but it has been my favorite piece of equipment so far.
The road walk was past lots of farms, and with lots of pretty flowers. By the last 5km I was ready to be off my feet again. So I am glad that it was a shorter day. I made it to the backpackers by early afternoon. I dropped my bag off, then headed to Maccas for free WIFI and then to Pak n’ Save to get my next lot of resupply.
I’m not sure what I am going to do for the next section. There is a large amount of rain coming in over the next week, but particularly tomorrow night. Which is the night before I am meant to go into Raetea Forest, which is known for being a mud pit at the best of times with challenging navigation. There are no other hikers here tonight. So I need to decide whether to push on or have a day off tomorrow to let the worst of the rain pass, then hopefully continue with other hikers into the mud pit that is Raetea.
Today I am thankful for flowers.