Day 32 – Thursday 13th November

Totara – Brookby Connection, Kimptons Track, McNicol Road Connector and Wairoa River Track

Start Point: End of Wairere Road, Totara Park

Finish Point: Track exit, Cossey Access Road (about 50m uphill of a cattlestop), Hunua Ranges Regional Park

Distance: 28km Time: 8 hours

My day started with a visit to the Botanical Gardens for a photo pose to go on their Facebook page. Nicky raided the vegetable garden for me so I could have a yummy salad for lunch.

At 8am I met Mark, who I am staying the night with. He gave me info on the tracks for today and then took away all the heavy stuff from my pack so I could have a lighter load. Lovely!

Joanne, from the Mental Health Foundation then turned up and we began our 14km of road walking. We had footpaths to start but that soon changes to skinny verges. The trucks were constantly whizzing by. To top it all off we had rain as well. It didn’t faze Joanne or myself and we carried on. On our last stretch we bumped into a farmer who stopped to chat and has helped a walker who was late through this part of the trail and gave her a place to sleep and she helped deliver a lamb. An amazing experience for the South African walker.

At the end of Joanne’s part it rained again, of course. She was picked up and whisked away. I headed on alone as, Joni who was going to walk with me, had three sick children. The Kimpton’s Track was awesome for me. I felt like I had finally escaped the city, pavement pounding and the traffic and headed steeply up hill. The view was great and then I got hailed on. Far out!

The track was great all the way up to a look out platform which gave me views in all directions. I ate a bit of lunch at the top feeling great.

The other side of Kimpton’s track was a different story. Lots of slippery clay and steps. I have done so many steps that I cringe every time I see them now. I made it down to Clevedon which seems like a nice town.

More road walking and being on my own, I started noticing all my sore bits. Sore left thigh, sore right calf, sore soles of feet and sore toes. I was in need of a walking partner to take my mind off it. It really made me appreciate all those that have walked with me so far.

The last track of the day was Wairoa River Track and it was wet and muddy so I did some skating around and managed to get brown shoes and legs again. It has been a few days break from it though so I can’t complain too much.

I popped out of the trail at 4 pm to be picked up by Mark and with shoes off, sitting down I enjoyed the best part of the day….being finish.

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