Te Araroa – Day 29 and 30

Day 29 – Auckland – 0km

This was a day off in Auckland. As you can probably guess by now, I spent a few hours in MacDonalds using their wifi to update this blog and download podcasts and audio books. However, I also went to church. There is a New Zealand church that has a really great media department and does awesome Christmas videos that are on YouTube (if you’re interested look up an Unexpected Christmas) and I discovered that the church that does these videos is in the heart of Auckland, so I visited them. It was their carols service so it was full of Christmas festivities.

Then at night I caught back up with the other guys who had made it into Auckland that day and we went out for dinner and drinks.

Day 30 – Auckland CBD to Auckland Airport – 23km (604km total)

Today was a good day but also a bit sad. The group I had been hiking with were all doing different things from Auckland. Some caught the bus forward out of Auckland to skip walking through suburbia and on roads. Some were staying in Auckland a bit to rest some more and then were either walking out or skipping ahead. I was the only one setting out to walk through the rest of Auckland, so I was sad to be leaving some great people, but hopefully I will see them again further up the trail.

The day started with good byes and a trip to the post office to collect a package I sent to myself from Kerikeri and to post a few things home and a few other things forward to Hamilton, which I should hopefully be at by the end of the week.

By the time I had organized postage it was 10.30am. However, with only 23km to walk for the day I wasn’t worried. Plenty of time to make it out to near the airport. Despite the day being through Auckland, which most people don’t like. I enjoyed it. I like the fact that the trail takes you through not just nature, but significant places in New Zealand.

A great view of Auckland as you hike up Mt Eden
Can anyone explain this to me? This is the second time I’ve seen this babies face on a sign. The first was at Bream Head. This one was in Auckland Domain, Pukekawa

The trail today went through Auckland University, Mount Eden – which is a volcanic field with a crater. Cornwell Park (named after one of Aucklands first Scottish settlers) and One Tree Hill (also has volcanic craters), as well as Ambury Regional Park. Of course the other highlight for walking through a city is the many opportunities to stop for snacks i.e. ice cream and coke.

What will I do in a few days when I can no longer get ice cream or chai on trail!???
A statue of John Logan Campbell

The plan for tomorrow is to try and walk an approximately 45km day. If I can do that, it gets me out of Auckland and to a Holiday Park to sleep. I’m not sure if I can do it so stay tuned to see what happens…

Today I am thankful for city parks.

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