9th Oct,

Te Araroa 8. Start of Ketea track

Eunhwa woke before me at about 6am Eunhwa wanted to get going, it was cold and I wasn’t keen so we lay in for another hour. A 45 minute walk, we passed 2 tents, one of course being the boys just before the main road and the other being Scott and Mandy which was hidden on the right about a 100 meter from the river

We spent about a good half an hour at the river cleaning our boots, garters and rain pants that were covered with mud from the forest hike.  We pushed on and being a Sunday , the forestry workers weren’t working and hauling logs so our progress through the tree plantations was easy until we came to a point where we were definitely going in the wrong direction.  Referring to our GPS maps we soon realized that the last arrow/marker was pointed the wrong way, someone playing games I think.  We backtracked with a loss of an hour and soon had company with Scott and Mandy. 


Their pace was much faster as Eunhwa still had tender feet from the 4 days of beach walk.  I’m amazed that how difficult the 90 mile beach section was and how punishing to the feet if can be, it didn’t just effect us but many others as well and walking in the forest was like getting a foot massage as every step you take required different moments of the sole of your foot, toes and ankles compared to the repeated action of the beach.

We stopped for lunch next to a nice river, gear laying everywhere and Eunhwa made an amazing lunch with the most  basic ingredients, or was it because we were just really hungry?

A car came up and parked next to us as their property was across the road with an old caravan that they called home.  He was really rough looking with deadlocks (messy gray deadlocks) and the woman with rotten front teeth smoking an electric cigarette, the type people use to give up smoking. They were friendly and talked for a while where I asked him where and how long had he lived in the area, 20 years and he just wanted to escape to big city as it was like a spider web.

Now we are camped at the starting point of the forest walk, easy finish today at 3pm with only 14kms under our belt, but it really seemed hard today with such a short distance maybe if the combination of the hard couple of the days catching with us or maybe its the incorrect food type to provide us energy.