Rimu Bivvy – Retaruke River Bridge
1182km – 1195km, 13m, 3 hours.
I had a good night sleep in the rimu bivvy, it was very cold though. No tent, I slept with the fly over the sleeping bag. The tui song rocked me to sleep and again woke me way before dawn. The dawn chorus was quite amazing, although I couldn’t identify the birds.
Other sounds all night were lambs bleating and bulls roaring, no other visitors.
I packed up camp fairly slowly until the sun warmed me up. It was about 2 km to the Retaruke turn off and 8:00am by the time I got my stride. I knew this was an easy day but wanted to relax once I got to the monument at Kaitieke.
The track was a gravel connector road and fairly flat. Passed grazing land and cattle stations in varied degrees of flash. Very pretty.
The school bus passed several times, other traffic backwards and forwards. I thought it was busy for a country road.
I arrived at Kietieki before lunch at the monument and ummed and arred to keep going but decided this will be my resting place for the afternoon.
The tap there had no water but I was warned about this but there is couple of places where water was easy to get by the side of the road.
I lay in the sun and read. Around 3:00 a couple arrived Hills and Tom, a couple from The Nederland, we chatted a while until they decided they needed to push on and get water. A wee while later, Hills came back up the hill and said there’s a good camping spot 500mtrs down the road,come join us.
As I was finishing packing up my stuff, another car arrived looking for another TA hiker. The big shed behind will be open if I want to stay in there. Sharon and Roger will have a camping place there for next year. The story about the water is Sharon is waiting for the council to connect it up after selling their place.
I set up camp by the river and had a dip in the water. Not cold but refreshing. A lovely spot with the sounds of the water flowing steady all night. Chatted a while with Hills and Tom while we ate dinner and just on dark found my tent.
Tom helped me sort Guthook out, now called Far Out, I need to download waypoints and also km are different to TA guides and maps.
Another cold night, good to be in my tent again. Really nice to have other walkers tomorrow too.