28th Jan Saturday, Te Araroa 119

2787km to Telford Campsite 2816kms tent (29km) tent

Last night was one of the coldest  nights I’ve had , simular to Deception River back near Arthur’s Pass, I was so cold I went out of the tent twice during the night to only see a full sky of stars, but even with all the clothes  I had  even my rain paints on while in my sleeping bag, I was still very cold. I decided  there and then that my next though hike, I’ll have good quality  sleeping  gear.  Being cold and unable to sleep during  the night isn’t much fun.

Early start at 7:20am and for the next three hours was hard hiking through high grass with hidden waterways amongst the tussock grasslands and a couple of times I had fallen and slipped into mud. The other problem was at times your foot would find a hole and you would collapses into it then having to climb your way out.

 Finally we made it to Aparima Hut where we had our second breakfast. Porridge, coffee and some cheese  and crackers.

After leaving Aparima Hut, the first 800 meters was rough going through high grass and mud just like this morning. Then for the rest of the way to the next hut was through forest which is most pleasant with the soft ground and protected from the weather, which has been really good with blue skies

Had lunch at Lower Wairaki hut which has 4 bunks and would have been comfortable if we staid there.

Lower Wairaki Hut to Telford Campsite, this segment  is a climb  of 480m with the sign board at the hut saying it will take 6 hours, it took us 3 hours and 15 minutes, I guess we are conditioned to the climbs as we have been doing this for over three months now. 

I’ve seen many trees like this that have been pushed over by the storms, not much in the way of a roots system with so much water about

Sandflies  are really bad here, I’m spending a lot of time trying to get rid of them but as the sun falls  they tend to disappear  until morning.

Been a long day, finally setup tent at 8:00pm over a 12 hour day.