What a way to start! My dad drove me North to Cape Reinga, stopping to visit my sister, brother in law and nephew in Auckland, my grandma in Kamo and aunt in Whangarei. My grandma gave me some of her food supplements from the rest home and a money donation to my charity, Shine. Amazing spirit and generosity! An early start to reach the cape, dropping by the Bus Stop Cafe for breakfast. Even though they are closed on Saturday, Reuben and his wife Beulla made us welcome and made the biggest and tastiest breakfast you could hope for! Arohanui you two, you are beautiful people.
Obligatory pics done at the lighthouse, I said farewell to dad and got walking.
Not long in I came across my first mystery- footprints! Another TA hiker, Christophe maybe?
Day Two and I am already talking to myself. Seemingly endless beach, sand everywhere and the ceaseless roar of the waves. It feels like a halfway world somehow.
To break the monotony of walking towards the horizon, I count gulls, terns, oystercatchers, falcons, wild horses, crazy tourist bus drivers, and dying fur seals. Colorful molluscs. Blisters. Animal footprints. I come up with a plan to catch wild dogs by planting a big stick in the middle of the beach. Sure enough, the next day one has pissed on it. Forgot the snare :)
And so, Day three. 101 kms to finish the beach leg. Learning to slow down and nurse some old niggles. Ahipara perhaps end of today or early tomorrow... Who knows what the day will bring?
I've found cellphone coverage again, only 1 bar but should be enough to get this to you. Switching my phone off again to conserve batteries, then a brisk walk to warm up! Take care, Kiwiscout