4th December

20.1km

Bushcamp 1074.3km to Tongariro Holiday Park 1094.4km

The night was filled with light drizzling rain which continued as I had breakfast and packed up my tent. The rain was never hard, just persistent. The upcoming river crossings shouldn’t be running too hard, I thought.

It took just over an hour of slipping and sliding down the trail to reach the first of the two deep river crossings. I could hear the river from about 200 meters away. I approached the river. It was only about 10 meters wide and shrouded by rainforest. There was a bit of water flowing but it only appeared to be knee deep.

I took my time to pick my route across. The water felt warm as I took my first footsteps. The flow of the river was not to strong as it hit progressively deeper. Knee deep water rished downstream on its mission to join the same river I would canoe next week. The rocky river bottom was firm and bit slippery. I was quite relieved that it was an easy crossing. One more to go.

10am photo below

The rain and drizzle continued, often times very heavy. And by now I was soaked. The next river crossings flowing slightly faster. The small river pebble bottom of the last crossing was replaced by larger, slippery rocks.

I studied the river for a moment, loosened the waist belt and sternum strap of my pack and entered the water. The bottom was very uneven and slippery. I took my time and picked my route across quite easily. Relief that the first hurdles of the trail were completed. But what about the alpine crossing tomorrow….

Still the rain and drizzle continued. The trail was a mix of puddles, mud and overgrown shrubs. I was soaked. Every part of me and my clothing were soaked. As the day progressed the hike ended with the usual roadwalk.

Although it was only 2pm I decided to call it a day and set up camp in a holiday park. After a very hot and very long shower and some dry clothes I checked the weather. Things are looking worse than I expected. Strong winds and rain turning to snow in alpine areas. I’m heading to alpine areas. All I can do is have a good nights sleep.

Just a side note, I’ll be in some remote areas for 4-5 days so no posts till then. Enjoy the break. Back soon.

For those of you that live vicariously through my travels would you like me to send you a postcard from New Zealand? I have set up a Patreon site with various levels of support. For those that would like to help out with my journey, I can give something in return. Thank you in advance. https://www.patreon.com/bikehikesafari


You might like to read:

Complete Te Araroa Trail
Te Araroa Trail Gear List
Lightweight Hiking Gear List

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