Oct 11 day 41 Taumaranui to stealth camp on 42 Traverse 34 km 9:00-4:30
My first equipment failure and it wasn’t my shoes (they keep holding on). The bottom valve of my camelback failed which of course meant a liter or more of water in the bottom of my pack. Made me glad I double bag lots of my stuff, but did have to spend morning with a wet ass. Took my time leaving Taumaranui as I had 20 km highway walk which I was dreading. Also, since it is a long time before resupply, I am as packed with as much food as will fit. I wanted to get a big breakfast which I did at the Bakery Cafe. Not as cool as Anna’s but it was open and had wifi. The morning walk was uneventful, and around 1:00 I got to a little town called Owhango. Just a couple of streets, but a really nice organic/local cafe, so I stopped and also had a big lunch, so I just had ramen for supper. It was one of those places that just made you smile. I seriously thought about adjusting my itinerary and camping nearby, but it was still early, the weather was good and I was finally going to get off the road, so I pushed on. Had really great afternoon jaunt up and down hills and over streams on the 42 Traverse jeep road. Later in afternoon, I found a spot just off the trail on a bed of moss, set tent, cooked, ate, got organized and crawled in. Later I heard a rifle shot and a bit later another one close by. Half hour later came a loud rustling up through the bush and soon emerged the hunter who was looking for his partner to help with the deer he had killed. We talked a bit, his hands were red with blood. Later, he walked back through with a big dog and his friend who he apparently was able to convince to carry the deer– a fine day for all but the deer.