Saturday, 5 June 2010

Great walks indeed

According to the Department of Conservation website, New Zealand has nine great walks. During a spate of communing with nature between 2005 - 2006, Tane and I joined Bonnie, Sarah C and a bunch of others to do two of them; the stunning Tongariro crossing day trip, and the three day Waikaremoana walk. As these walks pre-date both this blog and either of us owning a digital camera, I haven't blogged about them yet. I have recently acquired a (somewhat grainy) scanner as well as retrieved my photos from storage though so here I go. Yay!

Getting out some warmer clothes during the Tongariro crossing

The Tongariro crossing was excellent and I totally recommend it for a good day out. It took us about 8 hours, seemed to go through multiple climates, and had us constantly stopping to either put on or take off a layer. I loved it though, and after the aptly-named "The Devil's Staircase" part of the walk, the hot pools in nearby Tokaanu were very much appreciated afterwards.

Lake Waikaremoana

The Lake Waikaremoana walk the following Easter was also fabulous. Three days of walking, not showering, using long-drops and getting blisters the size of a bottle top are not every one's cup of tea. We both really enjoyed it though - the scenery was glorious and being in the bush very calming. If I did it again I think I'd take four days rather than three for more lazing around time, but it was still a great few days.

Given it's been four years since our last great walk I am looking forward to doing at least one more this summer. The only challenge though is deciding which, so if you have any recommendations about the other 7 I am very interested!


After two and a half years away, I had forgotten about how absolutely positively nasty Wellington could get at times. The rain! The cold! The wind! The combination of all three resulting in umbrellas being discarded in rubbish bins all over the city and rain coming at your face horizontally! Every now and then though, the sun does come out. On days like today when most Wellingtonians are probably frantically catching up on doing washing, we got our bikes out and went for a ride around the bays. It's true, you can't beat Wellington on a good day.