3 Dec. Te Araroa 63.
Tararua Ranges
Nichols hut to Parawai Lodge 23km,

Early start this morning of 7:40, frost was on the ground with blue skies in all directions.

Nichols hut

In side Nichols hut Last night

Climbing to our highest point of 1350m which was a great heart starter for the morning that took two hours and thankfully there was no wind with the narrow track we walked along the ridge that had a sharp fall on both sides.

Views were amazing were we could see the snow caps of Tongairoa , Levin and the coast line below.

380m ascent, 1240m descent that day which were defiantly classed as knee busters

After 5 hours of hiking we came to the Waitewaewae Hut, this one has to be the best we have come accross so far, the river was just at its door where we washed our tired feet and the sun on the veranda was nice and strong to dry out our boots. The hut itself had plenty of fire wood unlike that others we have come across and inside the hut was so warm and welcoming, the only thing that was stoping us from staying there the night was not the lack of food, or time but fuel for our cooker were I estimated that we had only about two more cooks left.

I love this type of river crossings Waitewaewae Hut was just ten more minutes away

Waitewaewae Hut

With 5-6 hours hiking time to get to the next hut, it was time to push on and get there before sun set which was 8:30pm. First part was up and down and crossing many streams, the detour, that was made to get around a large slip, was a bit rough but nothing we couldn’t t handle and when we eventually got back on the track, it was like an express highway. I should see old railway lines along the way, what that was about I don’t know but it could have been a left over from its logging days