Day 22 and 23

Day 22 – Day off at Ruakaka – 0km hiked

There is not much to report for this day. It was a very lazy day. The most energy I spent was on a short walk to the local dairy (corner store) for an ice cream. Other than that. I spent a lot of time in the camp ground kitchen charging electronics, while watching a few movies on my phone. Notably, Netflix ‘The Christmas Chronicles’ which I though would be terrible, but it was actually ok. Kurt Russel as a sassy Santa, what’s not to like about that.

Day 23 – Ruakaka Holiday Park to Mangawhai Heads Holiday Park – 40km (441km total)

I didn’t think I’d have much to write about today, but I was wrong. By midday when we had already done 20km for the day, it became clear that we could make it all the way into Mangawhai Heads, making it a 40km day. What a difference a few weeks makes. If you had told me a few weeks ago to hike 40km in one day, I would have protested or at the very least my feet would have thrown a hissy fit. However, after doing 40km today, my feet are just normal ‘I’ve hiked’ sore and I don’t feel totally trashed from doing 40km.

The morning started with 6km on the beach before heading into Waipu, which I am assuming is pronounced why-poo. I find this very funny because apparently I have the humor of a 6 year old boy. In Waipu, we stopped at a cafe for morning tea. A chai latte and muffin fueled me through the morning.

New Zealand town names always crack me up

It was then road walking on progressively smaller roads through farm and forest land. Where we stopped for lunch on the side of a forest road. I had a lovely nap in the sun and don’t know if I woke up from the small snore I made or the ant that crawled up my short and bit my leg. Either way I woke up and hiked on to make this a killer distance day.

I take signs like this a bit more seriously after hearing stories from other hikers about being charged by bulls. The fun of hiking the TA
The afternoon was full of amazing coastal views from up on Mangawhai Head

The afternoon was through more forest then farmland before coming out on the coast again for the beautiful walk into Mangawhai Heads Holiday Park. This is where the best highlight of the day came. The campsite had puppies! I got to hold and pat a puppy. It was like Christmas.

Today I am thankful for golden retriever puppies.

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