Sunday, August 30, 2015

Te Aroha Mountain Summit: Day hike

Beth, Paula, Mike, Peter, and I

It has officially started. What? Our getting ready for the Lake Waikaremoana Great Walk that is. A portion of the Ninja Tortoises is going to head out and tackle the 46km track over the 3 day long Labor Weekend. We have been discussing this outing for several months. We have booked our hut spots and are anxious to go, but there are a few with limited experience. So we have planned a few outings before hand. Our conversation is really just a continuation of the same email thread that we kick around all our group activities. Did you know that Google will only allow 100 consecutive responses to an email before it spins it off to its own thread?

Any way, Peter, freshly returned from his trip to the US on Friday afternoon, was picked up by Paula and Mike in Auckland early Saturday morning while Beth and I left Kinloch to a foggy start. We met in Te Aroha at 9:30 am  and departed right from the iSite. The plan was to summit the 952m track via the direct path up, located behind the local spa pools, and then taking the longer ridge track back. Shortly before getting to the Whakapipi lookout, we were already stripping off excess layers. We would be adding/removing the outer layer most of the day. This would be a common story all day as the weather fluctuated all day long. After leaving the lookout, the conversation dried up as the heart rates increased along with the steepness. This was only a temporary set back as we stopped for snacks and the trail leveled out a bit.

At the trig station
 We heard all about Pete's trip to the US, where he downhill mtb in Alaska. He ended up having some medical issues on a flight to Boston. He ended up passing out 3 times on the flight and ended up "getting off" the flight in Chicago. He ended up driving to Boston with strep. Evidently the congestion prevented his body from equalizing and he passed out. Mike and Paula talked about celebrating their meeting at flight school. With a flight school reunion in Matamata. We ate lunch at the trig station and talked more about the Great Walk.
Bearded Pete in surprise
We talked about what gear we have/could share on the trail. A good discussion was our trail recipes for tramp meals. For previous trips, I've made Beth and I a combination of couscous, dehydrated peas, Parmesan cheese, chicken bullion cube, and canned chicken for dinner. For breakfast, I had porridge with dried fruit. For my daily snacks, as I typically don't eat lunch, is salami and cheese. Beth opts for English muffins with cheese.

 We joked that we should have a color-coded spreadsheet of equipment people would be responsible to bring. We are now planning an over-night planned trip in a couple weeks. We will find a tramp that has a decent distance and an available hut for our next adventure. It is good to break in the others with a gentle day hike, followed by an over-night trip, and then a multi-day walk.
Is this thing on?


  1. There seems to be no mention of the boys taking a bit of a detour while the girls took the correct path. The boys did meet up with us after hiking an extra km or so.

  2. I had forgotten about that. Yes kids, pay attention to your trail markers. We came to a stream that cut across a trail and we continued on. We went down a bit. Pete and I commented that we didn't see a marker recently. We waited a few to see if the rest of the party was coming as we were ahead. We turned around and told another tramper that this probably isn't the correct path. We went back to stream and walked down the stream for a bit then spotted a trail marker as it became a trail again. We also heard Beth shouting from below low us.