Today – 32km From Pukerua Bay to Mt Kaukau Johnstonville
The wind was so intense last night, no one of us got barely any sleep. I kept waking up, expecting my tent to have been ripped to shreds by the 80km gusting winds.
The whistling noise was putting me off sleeping, but I got in a few hours.
Also, kudos to my MSR Hubba NX tent for being a legend and surviving way more wind than it should have been in.
I was awake at about 5.30am and so thought to pack up and get going, the wind was still really intense and I just wanted a moments silence out of it. Packing up was hilarious, trying to save the tent from launching into the sea in the wind.
I headed back towards the trail and had a great mornings walk to Paramata New World via Plimmerton for some breke. The trail was a really nice wide walking cycling path, a breeze to walk on and I made great time.
From there it was onwards to Porirua , through footpaths and parks and towards Wellington.
The wind was still pretty intense, but not too bad because I wasn’t up high. I started the Colonial Knob walkway, which began with a really beautiful set of staircases through lush green forests.
Then it opened up into a cool viewpoint looking back the direction I had come. Unfortunately, the wind was already gusting so i needed to be steady on my feet.
I looked ahead to the 200 odd metres to the summit I still had to climb , the gradient chilled out and I started walking.
There were some really exposed bits where I was nearly blown off my feet, but no knife edge ridges so I wasn’t going anywhere. Practically ran down from the summit, keen as to get off the blustery tops giving me a headache.
The next challenge was soon apparent as I entered a forest with swaying trees and signs saying there were unstable trees so stay on trail. Eeek. I scurried down the trail real quick, and then breathed a sigh of relief.
The rain started, and I had potentially another mountain in front of me so I looked at the map and decided one big windy summit was enough for the day, and hiked the remaining bit on the road and ascended a bit through the forest, before jumping off trail and getting a bus into central Wellington.
The good news was that because I had an early start, it was only mid arvo so I enjoyed a few hours of eating and hot choc in downtown before meeting Casey , who kindly is letting me stay at her apartment for a few nights. Awesome to see you Case!
Then it was shower and dinner time, caught up with Tom and Mike and some diving buds from Wellington, always a pleasure catching up with Rob who lives here.
Tommorrow will be bussing back to where I left off and doing the remaining kms to finish off the North Island.