Gerard’s blog Taumarunui to Whanganui
Tongariro Crossing was a highlight of this section. Once we got to the top the weather played its part and gave us great views of the surrounding landscape with the odd drift of fog to cut things off. Although a long slog up from the north end of the track (height above sea level is 1850m) we reached the top in surprisingly good time and not too worn out. Nice to see a mix of day walkers on the track doing the crossing on this Waitangi weekend.
We stayed on the mountain that night in a local DOC hut which you have to prebook before hand as it’s very popular. The weather came in later that day with rain and wind and the temperature dropped.
Short walk to the Château the following day for a good nights rest. Great surprise to see Grant an Leisha there to greet us. Caught up for lunch and a coffee while the weather outside continued to get worse. They then decided to stay that night so we had dinner together later on.
Always happy for someone else to cook our dinner that night with great company as well.
The weather was getting no better when we woke up with forecast for more rain and therefore flooding in the Wanganui river catchment. Our canoeing down the Wanganui river will be postponed. We hitched a ride back to NP with Grant an Leisha to wait out the weather. Thanks guys for the ride.
It took 2 weeks for the river levels to come down (tropical storm Dovi also dropped a bit of water) so we rested at home for that time.
The last 3 days has been spent finally canoeing the Wanganui river. Jenny was more excited about this section than I was. Water sports are not my fav. Anyhow I was sent to the front of the canoe to be the paddler/engine, with the more wise an knowledgeable of us being in charge of steering. Our marriage has survived this journey and we are still talking.
One thing about being at the front of the canoe you got to eyeball the rapids first and sometimes I felt they were taller than the small canoe I was sitting in. But all you could do was dig in an paddle thru the shit.
Well it’s now back to the South Island which I’m excited about.