4th Jan Wednesday: Te Araroa 95

Locke Stream Hut 2,127km to Morrison footbridge 2,150km (23km) Tented

The river is still flooded but slowly coming down accordingly to my rock markers I was looking at yesterday.

Locke Stream Hut looking out at the river

Crossed a couple of rivers without any problem until I got to the one just passed Kiwi Hut. I was warned about this crossing yesterday by a father and daughter that attempted it yesterday and was washed down stream a little. I was told to not cross where the TA map tells you to but instead go upstream and find a wider section where the water would be more spread out.

I walked up and down and finally decide to cross, got about a third of the way and had to quickly return almost losing my footing and tripping over in doing so. The current was definitely strong and at waist hight the water was a real force and I could feel if I took another step more I would have been using my backpack as a flotation device trying to crawl myself back the the river edge.

I went upstream much further this time and found a much easier crossing so I was releaved at that, problem then was I had the fight my way through the forest to get back to the track as there were no paths but rather that, than a swim downstream.

It was really hard going this afternoon, the track must have been effected by the resent earthquake back in November as there were trees all over the track making progress very slow. You either had to go under, over or around and always on the lookout for the orange markers to tell you the path. 

Finally within 3km of Morrison footbridge, I gave up and walked instead of the forest path but in the river which at this point was rocky and required many stream crossings which were only ankle depth.

So I’m tired and hungry looking for a place along the river to pitch my tent for the night and in the last half hour of my day, I got rained on.

Camped near Morrison footbridge
The notes said that the walk should take between 6-8 hours, for me today it was more like 9 hours.

Thank goodness today I made my goal of reaching Morrison footbridge.