A weekend in Totaranui

I drove over to Totaranui on Friday night and spent the weekend there with the Wall and the Bodger families. Well some parts of them. Emily was there and we went running on Saturday out to Mutton Cove. On Sunday I borrowed Pat’s single kayak and went kayaking back out to Mutton Cove. It was warm and blue. It really is paradise there.

Anapai Bay

Ari visits-26-Tramping to Blue River Hut

The sun was out as we left Kidds Bush, however, as we drove further along the side of Lake Wanaka towards Haast Pass it clouded over and there were spots of rain. We stopped at the top of Haast Pass and went for a short walk that gave us a nice view out over the bush. As we drove down towards the West Coast the weather improved again and we stopped at Fantail Falls. I went for a run up to Brewster Hut while Ari walked up the track. I got up to the hut in a little under and hour and it was nice to stretch my legs. We had considered staying at the hut but we were unfortunately running out of days. I headed back down meeting Ari in the middle before I continued down.

We had some two minute noodles by the river once she got back down and then continued driving. It was now very nice and sunny and the road was amazing. So much beautiful bush.

We drove into the evening stopping shortly before the sun went down. We packed my tramping pack hurriedly and Ari set off while I continued to sort things out quickly. Some random food, the tent in case the hut was full of kiwi blokes drinking beer and swearing loudly, a few clothes, a flying camera.

I caught Ari up and after about half an hour the sun set. It was nice walking along the track in the twilight. It didn’t take long to get to the Blue River Hut. There was a French couple there who had lit the fire so the hut was nice and warm. We cooked a quick pasta meal and went off to bed.

Looking back the way we came (Ari visits 2020)Cris about to go running (Ari visits 2020)View down the ridge from Brewster Hut (Ari visits 2020)Cris heading back down from Brewster Hut (Ari visits 2020)Ash on the snow (Ari visits 2020)Ari nearing Blue River Hut (Ari visits 2020)

1) We left the lakes and drove to Haast Pass. We also left the sunshine at the lakes. We went for a grey forest walk at the pass before carrying on.

2) We stopped at the Fantail Falls a few kilometres after crossing the pass. I went for a run up to Brewster Hut while Ari walked up some of the way.

3) It took just under an hour to get to the top. It would be nice to spend a night up there some time. We had been planning on doing this but it hadn’t worked with the weather and the bookings.

4) I rand back down again and met Ari on her way up.

5) We kept driving out towards the coast. Here you can see red ash on the snow from the Australian bush fires.

6) Rather than camp by one of the lakes we decided to walk into Blue River Hut. We left at dusk and the light was soon gone. There was a friendly French couple in the hut when we arrived who were surprised to see us.

Ari visits-8-running

We got up early and got rid of the tent. We walked down the beach to get fresh water and ate breakfast. I went running for a couple of hours along the Heaphy Track and Ari went for a walk. It turned into an amazingly sunny and warm day and the beaches and their white sand looked amazing with the dep blue water. The bush was also very nice with many nikau palms. I met Ari on the track and we headed down to one of the beaches and walked along taking photos and enjoying the sunshine. Once back at Scott’s Beach we took photos of the waves crashing onto the beach. The cold water was soothing on my legs.

We walked out back to the car later and went swimming in the river to get rid of the salt.

In the early evening we started driving South again along the straight road by the sea and then the windy Karamea Highway through the bush. We stopped and filmed the nice place. I took over the driving again and we drove up the Buller as dusk fell arriving at the camp site at the beginning of the Old Ghost Road as the sun set.

Running along the heaphy (Ari visits 2020)A weka (Ari visits 2020)Hopeful seagull (Ari visits 2020)Scotts beach from above (Ari visits 2020)Cris hiding (Ari visits 2020)Night sky (Ari visits 2020)

1) I went for a run along the Heaphy Track for a couple of hours. The palms were very nice. So were the beaches. I met Ari again on the track on my way back and we went down to one of the beaches and enjoyed the sun and sand.

2) There were so many wekas. Much more than I remember in the past.

3) A hopeful seagull waiting for a scrap.

4) Looking down onto Scotts beach from above.

5) Hiding behind rocks.

6) After leaving the Heaphy Track we drove South to Westport and then up the Buller River arriving after the sunset at the camp at the start of the Old Ghost Road. We heated up some beans for some quick nachos before bed.