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Alistair and Gail
Begins: Nov 1, 2017
Date: Sat, Feb 10th, 2018
Start: St Arnaud - Travis-Sabine Lodge
End: St Arnaud - Travis-Sabine Lodge
Daily Distance: 0
Trip Distance: 1,951.5
Daily Ascent: 0
Daily Descent: 0
People Met: 2
Entry Visits: 107
Journal Visits: 5,947
Guestbook Views: 144
Guestbook Entrys: 15
In the room off the lounge we were a bit concerned there might be noise keeping us awake but no one was in the lounge. We do hear a bit of noise from the dorm room through the thin walls before we get up at 7:45. Another clear sky day. We have beans and spaghetti for breakfast then while Gail plans her bivi sack structure, I deal with e-mail and then, having found I can reply to journal guestbook comments, reply to some of them.
Gail decides to use one of the thick orange plastic bivi sacs available at the visitor centre so goes there and I agree to meet her at the general store at noon for birthday cake. On the way to the general store I check out what the Clinker cafe has and see that they have much better quality cake. I explain to the staff my idea and they cut a quarter of a black forest cake, I put candles on it ( the same ones Gail used for my birthday last month ) then they take it into the back and will light the candles before bringing it out. I go to the general store and buy a litre of meths but as I do not want to carry a litre I take what I want and leave the rest with the cashier saying give it away to any hiker wanting some for their stove. I tell Gail there is a change of plan and we walk to the Clinker cafe. We order coffees and they bring out the cake with the coffees. Not the traditional way a black forest cake should be but good all the same. After this we go back to the general store and share a sausage roll and each have a magnum ice cream bar.
The cloud is now moving in and the mountain tops are obscured. Gail makes the bivi sac tent while I study the maps for the next sections.There are a few spots of rain and it is now much cooler than yesterday. We pack up some of our stuff, sorting out who will carry what.
After talking to another couple we walk back to the store at about 17:00. Gail gets some duct tape and then we get 3 pieces of fish and a scoop of chips and bring it all back to the dining room. After we have finished the food and a bottle of cider I see an older guy, most likely older than me, with an MEC fleece on. He and his wife live in Tsawassen near Vancouver. They worked in Auckland between 1973 and 1975 and have visited NZ several times since then. They were up Mount Roberts today and were on the Abel Tasman track before that.
Back at the room Gail tapes up her tent while I do the day's notes. The sun shines briefly - does this mean the rain has finished? The forecast is for rain this evening and heavy downpours tomorrow morning then some more rain Monday and clearing Tuesday. I plan to leave tomorrow after the downpours then expect/hope to be on 1900m Travis Saddle after it clears on Tuesday and hopefully the weather is still clear for similar height Waiau pass a day or so later. Gail expects to be in Hanmer springs on Friday 16th and I hope to be there on 17th or 18th. We will be by then 4 days behind our estimated schedule. At 20:00 it starts to rain. Hopefully it will end tomorrow morning. The pain in the back of my knee has gone and Gail feels a bit better after 2 days rest. We lie down at about 20:40.
Te Araroa is a 3000-km trail stretching from Cape Reinga in the North of New Zealand to Bluff in the South. Down the coastline, through the forest, across farmland, over volcanoes and mountain passes, along river valleys, and on green pathways through seven cities. Learn more: www.teararoa.org.nz