Distance traveled today: 20 km
Total TA distance covered: 20 km
Today is a good day to start walking the length of New Zealand
Great start to TA. Weather was ok. Sunny but with a moderate southerly blowing. The sun is so intense here. I arrived at Cape Reinga on the Sand Surfarri bus at around 12:30 but didn’t hang around long, knowing there was a big day ahead to get some distance in. I was so excited to finally see the lighthouse after all the work in getting here. I shot down to it to join the other hoards of tourists snapping away. Thanks to Shane for capturing my starting pic at the lighthous -that stomach will soon dissapear. 1452km to Bluff as the crow flies. I have more than twice this distance to cover on foot and was keen to make a start.
I covered ground quickly, my body settling in to the new found weight on my back. Not as heavy as the pack hike test for work each year but heavy enough. I hit the first beach section on Twiglight Beach and was started to find the beach walking rough on the feet. Now if I’m thinking this already I had 90 mile beach to look forward to. It will be a challenge.
It was reflecting type of day walking on the beach as thoughts came and when and I settled into a good stride. To think that I’m actually here and making a start on a massive adventure. I’m very fortunate to have the time off work. Contemplating this, a huge smile broke out on my face that erupted into spontenous laughter and culminated into in exhiltrated wohoo on the beach. But the task is so large I can’t fathem the distance to Bluff just yet. Each day, and each step at a time me thinks for now.
Originally I set out to reach Te Paki Stream 20km aling the trail but nearing Twilight Beach and approaching 4pm an early day was looking good. Walking at the steps I met two young French guys who’s english was less than average and I didn’t really feel like spending the first night in shallow, child like english explaining everything, I wanted to find a quiet place of my own. So i pressed on at about 4pm and hit 90 mile beach soon enough, sticking with the original plan of making it to Te Paki Stream.
The walk down the stairs onto 90mile beach said it all. Slow and steady. My body is not used to hard walking at the moment and I expect the next couple of days will be painfull, on the feet, shoulders and back as I ease into it. Te Paki Stream couldn’t come soon enough and i reached just shy of the 20km at the stream at 6:30pm. Wohoo! 20km down, 2980 to go.
The stream was running low but enough water was found for a top up. I found a nice sheltered camp spot behind the dunes. Being outdoors again and setting up camp was great but a reminder to stay organised as I’ll have to do this another 120 or so times. An early dinner was called for and sleep beckoned. I’m not looking forward to day two – i never do on any trip. Thats when you feel every niggle. But it wont be for long. I’ll soon get use to it and really looking forward to the point in time, in a week or so, that walking with a pack feels natural and all the little niggles are dealt with.
Having issues with photos but some to followcwhen better connected.