Ruakaka campsite 401.2km to Family camp 424.2km (approx)
I tried my best to sleep in but my body rejected the idea. Instead my stomach was instructing my brain to instruct my legs to walk to the kitchen area of the campsite. It was 6am. My original plan was to walk 10km to the next town of Waipu. I had been told the best beer on trail was to be found at the McLeod Brewery.
After several coffees it was 10am (photo below) when I started hiking. The campground was right next to the beach and the tide was as high as it would get when I set off. Only 15 minutes earlier I could have walked with dry feet.
After 6km of beach walking it was a 4km roadwalk to the town brewery. I went there for lunch but the high prices had me stay for a quick pizza and beer. I cant afford beer when it costs $10. One of the server guys asked if I was hiking the trail. He offered me a place to stay, all hikers are welcome at his place. I considered the offer but that might force me to drink more overpriced beer, something I just can’t afford. So I kept on hiking.
I continued another 10km on roads that got progressively smaller. A drunk driver nearly hit me when he misjudged a corner. I was hiking with a Danish guy at the time. That’s the second time stupidity on the New Zealand roads have almost ended poorly for me. I’m not sure all this roadwalking is a good idea.
By mid afternoon I reached a house with 2 Swedish hikers sleeping on the grass. They had been offered a place to stay. The owner came out and offered me a place to stay too. A couple of Danish hikers arrived and the 5 of us set up our tents on these kind people’s front lawn. The random kindness of strangers.