Highlight of my entire trip in the morning!!

The other three had left, and I was waiting for the sun to hit the hut for a decent image.

Suddenly nine kea swirled around in the sky. I knew there were more, having heard them from when I first woke up just before 6 am.

They came for an investigation. I guess some people feed them, which may amuse both parties. It doesn’t assist with the endangered parrots’ preservation, however, as it attracts them to humans and roads, and that does not always have a happy ending.

They scrabbled over the roof. I was on the veranda with my gear in piles packing up.

Suddenly I saw two clawed parrot feet on the edge of the corrugated steel roofing. Then a long, curved beak, followed by the head as it looked between its legs at me.

Now that was special.

Seeing I had little to offer it took off in a flurry.

Meanwhile, the remainder of the kea team all practised takeoffs and landings on the rather slippery roof. Yeah, they made a real racket. Then they were all on the other side of the valley.

No more reasons to stick around. I was off too.

It was much easier returning down the tight valley.

I sat at the main river junction where the boulder hopping really begins and just soaked in the steep hills, the big bluff, the bluest of blue water in the tumbling river, the cloudless sky. Times like this you appreciated how hard it is to create these special moments and realised they just shouldn’t just slide quickly by in some mad rush.

It has taken much of my life to appreciate these little moments.

← Day 8 | Crow Hut: all day for a three-hour walk