We ended up doing 25km today as I had the watch inadvertently turned off for about 1.5km. It was also a fairly up and down day involving about 900m vertical in both directions. Today's GPS track is here.
After the unfortunate events of yesterday at the Hunua Falls we intended to get away reasonably early before family etc arrived. We did get away about 0745, with TV1 news crew already there but with all the police tape etc down - the body of the teenage boy having been recovered about 10:30 last night.
The first few hundred metres involving getting back on the track proper, before starting the climb up to over 400m. The hike up was initially a mixture of nicely graded, good track and some steps through some pretty bush.
We then joined the Wairoa-Cossey track which was more of a tramping track with the usual stepper, rooty uphill and downhill with some mud in places (but still pretty good underfoot compared to what others have faced!). This eventually took us steadily down to the Wairoa Reservoir where we stopped for some lunch.
Then it was (of course!) back uphill again, at least initially, on more tramping track through bush. After about 2.5km we appeared out of the bush onto a 4wd track/road to see a big repeater/transmitter station - now we know why it was called Repeater Rd!!
Just after here, about 400m off Repeater Rd, was a basic campsite where we stopped to have a snack and top up our water supplies as it was a fairly hot day and the sweat was flowing a bit!
From here it was mostly downhill on metal roads initially and then on 4wd tracks (and some cycling tracks - we actually passed a couple of cyclists!) for another 10 km or so until we reached the Lower Mangatawhiri campsite. On the way past we got a look at the Upper Mangatawhiri Reservoir face as well. These reservoirs form part of Auckland water supply and are impressive structures!
The Lower Mangatawhiri campsite is a basic site with a couple of longdrops and some picnic tables, with water from the adjacent river. Of course we were the only ones there - particularly as there is no vehicle access without special permission from the Auckland Council, and a lot of the nearby tracks are for mountain bikes.
We arrived around 1700 from memory which gave us a bit of recovery time as we had done a couple of biggish days previously as well and we knew we had a bit of a climb first thing next day! We did take the opportunity to have a bit of a wash in the river while there - to at least try and reduce the hiker smell factor!!
Belinda and Anthony (aka Tony) Hadfield made a decision, in their late 50's, to do something a "bit different" and walk New Zealand's 3000km Te Araroa Trail over summer 2015/16 - although updates will now tell you that this plan will take longer now!!. As the old saying goes - "don't leave home 'til you've seen the country"!!