21 December 2011

Heading South

Winding our way south along the East coast we passed some beautiful beaches.

Walking mostly on trails or beaches but sometimes having to road walk. The route required us to cross various inlets and estuaries by a variety of means. To cross the Tiharuru Estuary we had to make out way across the thick mud of a mangrove swamp, at Whangarei heads we had to find a friendly boat owner to take us across to the other side.

Mangrove Swamp

Not far from Auckland we had some of our trickiest water crossings. After lots of rain a small stream in the Dome forest no longer looked like the babbling brook we it usually is. I tried to see how deep the water was at the bank but my walking poles didn't reach to bottom. Undeterred Madeleine took off her pack and carefully lowered herself into the stream she was chest deep and still her feet didn't touch the bottom. We camped and waited in the hope the rain would stop, it did and the following morning the water level had dropped and we crossed without any problems. It was amazing to see the transformation.

The Okura Estuary proved interesting too. It had been drizzling all day and were were both wet and cold but knew that we had to cross. The tide was on its way out so we waded out. We got about a third of the way across and the water was up to our wastes and getting deeper it was clear that we weren't going to make it all to way. We retuned to the bank where we sat in the rain shivering waiting for the tide. About 45mins later we made a second attempt and and made it but the water was chest high. We walked on feeling cold wet and pretty miserable but were rescued by one of our trail angels!

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