Te Araroa Trail – Day 15
Monday, November 13, 2023
Distance/ Total: 22.9 km / 14.2 mi
My tentsite under a tree really paid off this morning when my tent was dry. It was only the second day on this trail that I’ve woken up to a dry tent.
I packed up and left the group as they were boiling eggs for breakfast. The eggs were left at the camp by the farmer for hikers to buy. I opted to eat my cereal and get the weight off my back.
The trail started with a fairly steep climb up to the top of a ridge where it joined a farm road. The views from the ridge were fantastic and I walked down the road wondering why no one had built a house up here. I saw a small flock of sheep laying on the side of a mountain and as I topped the mountain say a house nestled in among the trees further down the ridge. And, Yes, they had that fantastic view from their place.
The trail soon joined a dirt road and followed it for about 8 km. It wound through the forest and was a nice shaded walk in the morning. I reached a paved road about 9:00 am and stopped to eat my 2nd breakfast.
Finishing up it was another 10 km walk down the paved road. Part of the road got pretty twisty and had a Cliff in one side and a drop off on the other. I was walking from side to side trying to find the best side to walk on to avoid the vehicles driving up the road.
About 1 km before the Whananaki Holiday Park the trail turned off the road and followed the high tide line around an estuary. The trail was in pretty good condition but did have mud in places.
I reached the holiday park about 12:30 and ate my lunch under the shaded patio before setting up my tent. Holiday parks are like KOA’s and have showers, laundry, and even kitchens for the guest to use. I showered and washed my clothes, hanging them in the New Zealand sun to dry.
Other hikers came in through the afternoon and we talked about our plans for the next few days. We ate dinner as the day turned to evening and eventually all turned in around 8:30pm.
Due to campsite locations and tides we have a 32 km day tomorrow and plan to get an early start.