Day Twenty – Taurikura to Waipu

Walked 6kms without packs to the jetty. Mike and packs dropped of by our hosts for a 9am boat ride across to Marsden Point. Huge Pie and chips at the cafe/canteen. Rain started as we headed down the track running parallel to the beach – high tide. Pretty heavy rain squalls. Road walked round the bridge over the estuary then a long walk on the beach. Road walked again to Waipu where soon after we were picked up and taken to a stunning hilltop home. Tired but very happy! Still living the dream!

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Day Nineteen – Ocean Beach to Taurikura (Whangarei Heads)

Awake early, took a photo of the sunrise. Negotiated the tidal river crossing at the start of Ocean Beach. Mike had a we spill at the river mouth, Anna got a wee bit wet as well. Two hours up the 9kms of beach, sand was a bit soft. Got to Ocean Beach in time to huddle in the DOC loo as it bucketed down with rain. Climbed up and over Breamhead scenic reserve in the pouring rain. Lunch under a rock overhang. Starting clearing as we walked out at the farmland. Arranged to stay at accommodation 2kms further up the road. Luca cooked dinner for everyone. Updated the journal, lovely shower, blog updated. Arranged to get across the harbour by boat tomorrow.

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Day Eighteen – Ngunguru to Ocean Beach

Cold night. Lots of dew on the tents. Picked up by Mark the kayak guy at 9am.  Forms filled in, health and safety briefing then onto the water at 10am. Onto the Estuary and out the river mouth with a paddle to Goat island for lunch. Beautiful lunch then a quick look at some caves. Back into the kayaks all the way to McGregors Bay. A bit choppy till we rounded the headland then explored the rocky areas before landing. Great trip! Awesome to have missed the road walking which we’ve heard is awful. Climbed over Kauri hill to the start of Ocean beach. Found a place to stay in a shed after asking the owner. Great day!

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Day Sixteen – Whananaki to Ngunguru

Another day of two halves. Up super early with a very full moon shining into the tent. Left after coffee at the store. Crossed the longest wooden bridge over the estuary. Followed a coastal unsealed road offering wonderful views of each bay as we passed by. Lunch at Matapouri before heading into the bush section of the day. Lovely bush for the afternoon. Very nice under the canapy past Kiwi areas. Finished off the day with 5kms of hard road walking. Didn’t dampen  the teams enjoyment of the day.

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Day 15 – Oakura to Whananaki

Slept under a tarp we’d borrowed rather than put up tents in the rain. Good sleep for Anna, Mike, Rick and myself. 4kms on the road to get to where we were picked up from. 12 more hard road kms to the bush track. Feet already munted by lunchtime. Bush track was stunning! Bit of hard work up the last climb, but great along the mangroves at Whananaki. Arrived with 5mins to spare for fish and chips before the store closed. Nice campground, thanks Tracey! Nice sunset!

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