Walking Home

reveries of an amateur long-distance hiker

Day 22

September 23rd, 2015

Sep 22 day 22 Stillwater to Auckland YHA 33 km 6:15- 4:00

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So at 7:09 this morning I was trying to ford the Okura River. I did everything right– arrived at the ford point at exactly low tide, tried 4 different places. Each time I’d get about 20 meters out and the water would get to my ribs (and the bottom of my backpack) and the river bottom would go soft — really muddy. Had to turn back each time, so finally gave up, and took the long walk around through the Okura Forest track, which goes through a fairly young Kauri grove along with lots of other magnificent trees, and lots of Tui’s (the birds, not the beers). Much of the rest of the day was spent working back to the coast through the suburbs. I changed from my wet clothes, but of course my shoes were soaked, so that 33 km beat my feet up. The sun would shine for about ten minutes, then it would rain again. Finally got down to Devonport, which is a really great town, and caught the ferry over to Auckland just as it was leaving. The hostel was just up Queen street, but walking there was disorienting. Surrounded by people talking — chattering– after all that solitude was hard to deal with. Hostel is nice, finally got some laundry done, whew, it reeked. Did not realize how tired I really was until I went out for a big bowl of noodle soup, then planned to find a bar, a beer, and maybe a televised rugby game. Ended up crawling into bed very early watching Colbert and Oliver clips before a deep a dreamless sleep.

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