Te Araroa Trail – Day 19
Friday, November 17, 2023
Distance/ Total: 26.4 km / 16.4 mi
Today started out a little slow. I fell asleep last night before updating my blog and wrote it this morning in my tent. I noticed my battery pack was down to 25% or less and plugged it in the kitchen receptacle to charge.
While it was charging I slowly packed up my gear, but still had to wait for about 45 minutes for my charger to get past 50%. That should be plenty to get me to the next town – Mangawhai Heads.
Jazz Hands, Jamie, & I ended up starting off together about 8:30am. The first 7.5 k was along the Tahuna Coastal Walk – a beach walk. The tide was coming in and neared high tide by the end of the walk and we were walking through some pretty soft sand.
Turning off the beach the trail was on a paved road for 3 km int the town of Waipu. Jazz Hands decided to hitch up to a nearby cave to see some glow worms while Jamie and I grabbed an early lunch at the Central Cafe.
Finishing lunch it was back on a paved road walk for about 6 km. There was sections of a cycle/ walk trail but part was still on a busy road with very little shoulder.
The trail turned of this road and began a 250m climb up a country road over about 7 km. It was a gradual climb and as we gained elevation the views got better. About 1/2 way up the road turned to a single lane gravel road and twisted through the forest.
Eventually the road ended in a private drive and the trail veered of into the forest. There were several steep ups and downs and the trail was muddy in places making it challenging to get through without slipping.
About 2.5 km of trail and it opened up onto a small meadow on a hilltop overlooking the bay. There was a covered patio, a water tank, toilet, and a nice grassy area to setup tents. A beautiful spot set aside for hikers to use.
Jamie and I setup our tents and had the site to ourselves for the night.