A strange feeling to have had the best company for a month (with my brother Gordon) and then to be suddenly on my own. I miss Gordon a lot. He just knew what had to be done and had a way of just making things happen. But as they say, you never know what the next few days in your life will bring. And with that, I was lucky enough to meet Andrea and Roxanne who were generous enough to offer me a lift back to where I had left off when Gordon was around. Great company they both were.
I could have done with more of that great company in the oncoming 48 hours of the trail. It felt really great hiking into the Herekino Forest as I had been waiting for the weather to clear for a few days. Months of hiking lay ahead and plenty of stories were yet to develop. The sun was out today at last. I felt as though this was a second start to the hike because it was so different from the start that Gordon and I made from Cape Reinga Lighthouse in the wind, rain and open space. The terrain from here would be very different. Mud, . . . deep mud, was on my mind.
I was now on my own. I didn’t see anyone for the rest of the day until I reached Takahue.
Overall I enjoyed seeing the huge Kauri trees and the forest in general. I didn’t like that I had misplaced the Steripen. It turned into a long day and I felt dehydrated when I reached Takahue. I couldn’t find a good place to pitch the tent so I asked a farmer on Takahue Saddle Road if he had any ideas for a campsite. I was hoping he would offer a patch of his land for the night and he did. He gave a few options and one of them was in his lounge room. I didn’t want to intrude so I took another of his options and camped by the river which marked the border of his property. (See photos in next post).
I found a level spot just under two poplar trees. I felt quite unsettled and I think it was because I couldn’t find the water purifier earlier in the day. I found it quite manageable having only myself to blame rather than someone else.
I grabbed one hour of sleep that night. Not nearly enough to tackle the next days hike.