Nov 10 day 71 Pelorus River Bridge to Rocks Hut 32 km 6:45-3:45
There is a hiking adage that says “take what the trail gives you,” which generally means take advantage of easy parts of the day to make some time. Often after a long climb, a trail will suddenly flatten out and present a smooth path. It’s then that I try to stretch out my stride, loosen muscles and make some distance. Facing a very long stretch — many days — in some rugged mountains, I realized I should take what the trail gave that first day, which was a 13 km road walk before winding up the edge of the Pelorus River and finally climbing up about 900 meters to end at Rocks Hut. The Pelorus is an amazing blue/green river flowing over white gravel with deep pools. It must be amazing to hike and swim in the summer. The weather continues to hold beautiful, and the trails are dry, such a complete difference from the North Island. The hiking was hard but not frustrating, and I crossed the river and several streams via high swinging bridges. A man from Poland named Darek was at the hut, so we spent the evening in conversation.