Had a terrible night sleep, was so cold, kept myself amused trying to put a fleece on without unzipping my sleeping bag – never going to happen! We consulted our american friend and he too had had a cold night!
As there were only 3 hours to walk today a lazy morning was called for, mostly to rest my feet – blisters on 7 toes! But also it was a lovely day and why not have a lie in and enjoy the amazing views we had?
So after a slow morning of coffee, breakfast, chatting to the others with the same idea, having lunch as it then meant we didn’t have to carry it! I zinc oxide taped up my toes, put my boots back on and we headed out to see what today’s walk would bring.
More amazing scenery, sandduny type landscape, gravelly bits, but my favourite was a forest!! From the heat of the day into the dappled sunlight and shade – such a relief from the heat and a change from the rocky landscape we’d had for the last couple of days. Just as it seemed that we were leaving the forest it opened up and there was a stream!!! Within no time the boots were off and my feet were cooling in the water – amazing!
We stayed for about an hour, ‘washing’ our tops in the water and seeing all the dust come out, they dried a lot on the rocks, but were blissfully cold and damp when put back on.
From the river it was meant to be an hours walk, up and up through more forest, watching the time to see if we could guess where the hut would be! The walk was lovely, but a lot of up, then finally some down when we spotted the King of huts – the Waihohonu hut! After another 5 minutes we were in the campsite area (the hut being another 3 minutes away), it was right next to a river, so I took my boots off and put the tent up and then went to brave the water. It was warmer than the one earlier so was almost nice to get into rather than freezing!
Came out and got my evening clothes on, long sleeves and long trousers – so many bitey things waiting for you. The hut warden came out to check the tickets just as I was decent. Discussed the route for tomorrow with him as I’d got more blisters, made one even worse as when coming out of the river I decided to remove the tape to put a new bit on…. I proceeded to rip the blister off too…. there was blood. So, yes, tomorrow’s walk, meant to take 5 hours and I wasn’t sure if my poor feet would take it. Thankfully he promised the walk was easier than anything we’d done so far, no massive hills and we’d be starting early so not as hot either. He also had some proper plasters, so headed up to the hut to get some from him.
The hut is only 3 years old and is amazing, massive, massive communal area, kitchen, windows with amazing views and best of all filtered water! No need to boil it to make it safe to drink!
Cooked up a storm of noodles, tuna and veg and even had coffee to go and watch the sunset. Not as stunning as on other nights, but when we went back down to the campsite the stars were amazingly awesome – you could see the Milky Way!
As I lay down I was thinking how sore my glutes were, probably from the hills….. but then remembered the scree skiing and it was actually massive bruises on my bum that were painful!!