Monday, February 25, 2019

It's full on for him but a doddle for me - St James Walkway

Dark, Dark, Dark - 6.30am Aaron starts walking
Misty, drizzly at the Lewis Pass drop off
Gearing up and ready to go

Breakfast by the roaring fire...mmmm didn't want to move

On a drizzly weekend after some very hot weather Aaron and I set off to do the St James Walkway. In two very different ways. We intended to be dropping Aaron at the Lewis Pass end of the walk by 6am. Getting up at 4am meant we were at the trail head at 6.30am. Aaron hoofed off as he had 60 kilometres to cover before meeting me again. I did the genteel start. I drove over the Lewis Pass and parked in the car park to the Maruia Springs Hotel. Having done my homework I discovered they opened for breakfast at 8am. Flipping the car seat back down, I got a quilt and a pillow and snuggled for a rest. The rain pelted and I was comfy. I felt heaps better an hour and a bit later.
 Some other people, waiting for the hotel to open, woke me with their chatting and we all wandered in. Oh the bliss, a lovely flat white, some decent food and a roaring fire. I got the seat right by the fire and even sat on the hearth for a few moments. Warmed and feeling human I then drove back to Boyle Village to walk into Magdelen hut. I started at 10.10am and by then Aaron had already zoomed past the first two huts as pictured. Cannibal Gorge and Ada Pass Hut.
Feeling happy and thrilled the weather was cooler I pottered on with another takeaway coffee in hand. Through the bush. Chatting to the few people I met and loving being out by myself. It's been years since I was well enough to be safe walking alone and I loved it. 
On the open plain an hour to go. Still feeling perky. 
At my accommodation for the night. Magdelen Hut. Not looking quite so perky as I had to take a couple of big deviations due to some cattle and a bull or two. The sun was starting to heat up, which was not meant to happen. 
4pm. By this time I had the knitting out on the porch, had a dunk or two in the stream to stay cool and was loving having the hut to myself.

Starting to be tired.

Aaron on the other hand had rested at the fourth hut for an hour before hitting the Anne Saddle.
at 9.25pm I heard tromp tromp outside and scream with excitement "No way!!" only to shoot out the door and find three fishermen in their 50's preparing to come into the hut. I then had to explain my scream as they thought I was really angry that someone else was coming into my space, either that or one of them thought they were interrupting a 'private moment"...

Anyway, thankfully 5 minutes later Aaron rocked up, corroborating my story and looking trashed. 59 km in what turned out to be a hot afternoon. Starting 6.30am and finishing 9.30pm. Crazy. 
Next day was a doddle out with a dip on the way. 

I loved the weekend
Happy trampers homebound.

A gorgeous break in Rarotonga

Woo hoo, A holiday with no kids for 11 days. Bliss, relaxing and warm! BTW it was an early 20th wedding anniversary present to ourselves....