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Up early to race for low tide on the beach which was still a reasonable hike away. Shelly offered to cook sausages for breakfast but I think the girls only woke around 8am and I was almost packed by then so I said goodbye and made for the forest that lay between me and the beach. I enjoyed hiking the shady road leading to the beach and it was low tide when I arrived. Seventeen km’s of beach lay ahead before I was to reach Pikiri where I planned to camp for the night.

The trail notes suggest to hike this section at low tide but I can’t walk that fast! I’ll have to take a “wait for low tide” break later on when the water gets too high.

I would soon be reaching my 500km mark just before getting to Te Arai hill. When I reached that point I took a load off, sat on the beach and thought about many of the good experiences I’d had on this trail up to that point. I couldn’t believe that I was only one sixth of the way through it. This point was worth a photo. I set the camera on auto and it took a few photos as I took a break.

A little later I was forced to take a rest whilst the incoming tide softened the sand. I found a great spot in the forest next to the beach and made dinner there which I often do at lunch time. The dunes were between me and the waves but I could hear the waves getting smaller as the tide came in.

About four hours later I was back hiking on the beach which was a much better time for it – no harsh sun and much cooler too. The beach became very wide and the rivers I had to cross weren’t deep at all. I arrived at the Pikiri campsite at 8:15. Since I had dinner earlier on I thought it would be a great idea to have breakfast – and went to bed.

4 Comments Post a comment
  1. John Phillips #

    Well done Kenyon!
    I like your ‘mandala’ in the sand to mark the 500km milestone
    Great posts too.
    I know this blog is somewhat behind and that you much further along now.
    I hope the heavy rains of the last few days have not affected you too much
    I see the weather forecast for the next week or so is sunny except Sunday
    We are enjoying sharing this experience with you.
    Best wishes from us all in Lions Bay

    Saturday 17 December, 2011
    • Hi John and everyone else there in Lions Bay! Not long now before you are also in New Zealand.
      Yes, I’ve had a fair amount of rain. When I arrived at National Park I was saturated from a heavy shower and at the time it was very cold as fresh snow was falling on the mountains in the area. So, I took cover in the town of National Park. It was great to get some fresh food there too while I warmed up. I’m really enjoying this trail. It’s so varied and sometimes very different to what I expected in certain areas.
      Thanks for your comments. I’ve enjoyed keeping in touch with you along the way. Have fun over the festive season!
      Bye for now,

      Tuesday 27 December, 2011
  2. John Phillips #

    Thanks Kenyon. We had a great Xmas here in Lions Bay. It is little Tess’s first Xmas and she made it special. She is crawling and standing up at chairs or the couch. She is a little character and seems to love company – especially other children of any age – eg neighbours up the road with four kids!
    We are all following your journey with great interest. Yes we will be there soon. Jon and Diane leave Saturday for Auckland and Russell for their first house exchange. We leave three weeks later and will drive with them down to Wellington and then across the Cook Strait to Picton, Nelson and Golden Bay for the second house exchange. We will arrive there in early Feb.
    Where do you plan to be in early Feb?
    It was good to see your photos of Mangawhai Beach – I especially liked the horses on the beach!
    I hope all goes well as you start the New Year
    Best wishes for a great 2012

    John, Pippa, Sam, Jonathan and Diane and Tess

    Wednesday 28 December, 2011
  3. Early February I would have just started on the South Island with Gordon. What I’ll do is update you by replying to the more recent post – dated 27th Nov.

    Apologies for the delay. I’ve been busy trying to make up time what seems like every minute of the day.

    Friday 13 January, 2012

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