Puketi Campsite to Kerikeri – 22km (227km total)
Today was a lovely day. Nice weather and nice scenery.
The morning started with a brief road walk and then the track turned into a farmers field. Which was great until the very last paddock, which had multiple marsh/streams in it. I took what looked like the path of least resistance (must remember not to do this, the correct path is always the one that looks harder). The path of least resistance, ended up with me crossing several marsh (bogs). I stuck my trekking poles in testing them and I would have ended up in marshy water over my knees. So I scouted around and managed to find tuffs of grass to cross on. The result was water up to mid shin! Once I had finished crossing, I saw an orange marker in the distance showing me where I should have gone.🤦🏽♀️
I then had a bit more gravel road walking to do, before I cut through some fields again, where some turkeys were fanning out their butts. If they do that to impress others, it worked. I would have stopped to ask for its number, but I had another date to keep with a hot shower and laundry in Kerikeri.
As I walked up over the crest of the farmland, I looked out to the horizon and caught my first glimpse of the sea. I have nearly walked from the west coast to the east coast of New Zealand.
The track then followed the Kerikeri river into town through lovely forest and overgrown grass, at times up to my chest height. However, I didn’t mind too much, it was so lovely.
I then arrived at Rainbow falls which I had forgotten that the track goes past, before following a lovely manicured path into Kerikeri, where I promptly booked into the holiday park and had a hot shower. Good bye dirt and hello clean hair. Luxury.
I received a message from C and F saying they had made it in, but that F had bad blisters. I went and visited them in they cabin they had got for a few days to recover and heard about their day. They didn’t enjoy it quite as much as me and had done the same thing through the marsh/bog, but unlike me had the sense to back track. I am pressing on to Paihia tomorrow so may not see them again.
Today I am thankful for waterfalls.