Couldn’t quite believe it was only Day 5 of my Moa Pass trip. Seemed to have gone on forever.

I awoke prior to 5 am intending to make an early start so I could go for a resupply, and some rest and recreation for a night or two.

A vivid sunrise, orange turning to green, that hinted at another perfect summer’s day.

Just one major rinsing of my socks in the Wilberforce River, so sliding on my wet socks and boots first thing wasn’t too much of an issue.

My body wasn’t as sore as I might have thought after that massive 32 km length of day yesterday.

Okay, it had been mostly flat, or on a minor downhill slope, also only carrying two days of food in my pack, but it was still a long, long way.

This day wouldn’t be as far, but it was projected to be 30°C in Christchurch so I would need to remember to imbibe plenty of water.

I left just after 7 am, because I didn’t have much water, the barrel outside the hut was putrid, and saved what I had carried from the distant river for coffee. Ate a muesli bar on the move. Needed to make my way through the matagouri and down to cross the river, and this allowed my wet boots to have another rinse. More matagouri before I made it to the four-wheel-drive track on the north side.

Thought I’d check out the old Fanghill Hut, if only because of the name. It was around 100 years old, and had graffiti going back to the 1920s.

Civilisation was calling, so I kept moving.

The warmth arrived and I was pleased I was wearing my Lawrence of Arabia headgear to keep the sun off my head. The last few hours, after lunch, might be considered hugely boring due to physical tiredness, heat, social deprivation, and just the huge scale of the valley that gave limited sense of movement, but when I looked up the valley on occasion I was astonished how far I’d come in the previous 30 hours.

Finally along the canal, and I had an Internet connection and was able to communicate with the outside world once again. I listened to the radio to help pass the time as the pine trees became more immediate. Soon I was striding alongside them back up the dusty road to the Harper campsite where I hoped my car was not broken into, or incinerated.

Not even my new tyres stolen.

My car started immediately, and I drove to Christchurch for a shower, fresh food, and clean sheets for a couple of nights. You appreciate these things when either sleeping in huts, or the two nights camping over the last 11 nights.

← Day 13 | Moa Hut Day 16 | Wharfedale Hut →