Invercargill to Bluff Peninsular
Hiking Days Remaining: 1
Remaining Distance: 13km
Distance Covered: 3288km
Total Traverse Hiking Days: 147
Oreti River Bridge was the starting point of my second last day of the trail. I couldn’t believe it when Gordon told me this morning that in twenty-four hours time I’d be at Bluff!
Once back at Oreti Bridge, where I’d left off yesterday, I was gathering my pack and poles, getting ready for the hike, when Gordon unravelled the most amazing flag I’d ever seen. It was a flag of my traverse which he designed especially for me and had it printed on satin! He then handed it to me. Every town and city I’d hiked through had it’s place on the flag. The logo which Gordon designed when I told him I’d be hiking the length of New Zealand was also used on the flag. I was just totally amazed at receiving such a special gift at a time I least expected it. Some people really know how to celebrate. Gordon is definitely one of these people. I immediately wanted to start walking with the flag.
So we got on our way, but we had only just crossed the road when we were stopped in our tracks by a lady cycling with her two dogs on leads. She shouted out “Wow!, that looks intrepid!”. For the next five kilometres leading up to the estuary, so many people stopped us to find out what our story was – we were getting nowhere fast. They really were taken with the bright colours of my eye-catching flag! If that wasn’t enough, people were hooting at us all day. It really added a huge amount of atmosphere and excitement to my last full day of hiking. The flapping sound of the flag in the wind brought it home to me that this has been a successful hike in so many ways.
You may have noticed on the blog site, there’s a tiki face here and there which is a symbol of good luck for me. Gordon knows how much I like this particular tiki and has also included it in the design of the flag. It’s great to have such an emblem which fits in with the theme of the land I’ve spent so much time in.