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Hello New Zealand!

posted on 2019-11-26 21:00:17 in Patagonia

“Home sweet home” well almost.

The journey from Chile to Auckland via Sydney went without a hitch, just very long. Unfortunately the arrival in Auckland was not the end of the traveling, after we picked up a rental car i then drove over an hour down to Hamilton. Finally we made it and sleeping on the old futon I once owned never felt so good.

The next day I left Thomas with his friend to prepare for the wedding and I spent a few hours looking around the city spying a few changes since I left 7 years ago and a significant one inside the swimming pool where they had made it deeper and more suitable for racing.

From Hamilton I drove across to a Thames the into the Kauaeranga Valley where I had planned to camp. After dark I watched the myriad of stars appear then retired to the calling of a Morepork as it drifted across the field to my tent. In the morning I was woken by a beautiful dawn chorus from all directions. Even though we had seen and heard many birds in Patagonia their calling was nothing in comparison. I took a short morning bush walk into the Kauri forest before resuming my drive to Matarangi.

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It was great to spend a few days with my brother, his wife and their grandchildren. Steve is a volunteer coastguard and gave me a tour of the lifeboats and the operation room which I found very interesting and informative. Being such good weather we also managed to explore  the coastline in particular Rings beach and generally had a relaxing time together.

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My return drive to Auckland and picking up Thomas was much longer than it should’ve been due to taking the southern Coromandel road to explore Whitianga, Hahei and Hot water beach. Then as I approached Auckland the motorway was closed due to an incident and I had to navigate (following my nose) through the traffic of South Auckland- yuk!!! I dislike driving in Auckland!

And so to Nelson, arrived early at Auckland airport for the 9:00am flight. We found a good campsite for a night of “facilities” before we start the Able Tasman trek tomorrow. After pitching the tents we took a pleasant walk into town along the foreshore for some last minute supplies and later for dinner we feasted on a tasty fish and chip meal by the beach.

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Now fully stocked with food, tomorrow we are back to the 5:30 starts as we head off early to for the 5 day hike. Hopefully, all being well, I will be able to update the blog  again in Takaka next Monday.