A big day of nothing.

The rain started at about 4 30 am, and now, before dinner, it’s still coming down. The temperature has dropped plenty, maybe 8° C, so eventually I succumbed and lit the fire.

Man, it’s really raining now. Glad I’m not walking today. Or in my tent. When I went out to check the flow of the gorge river late in the afternoon it was dirty brown, and rampaging at a considerable pace. Superfast. Logs zipping past.

It was quite a sight.

Plenty of new file wood deposited, and I collected a couple of armfuls, carefully selecting pieces that would fit in the woodburner without cutting, unlike the decent pile inside the hut. Better to choose rata, it gives good heat and embers, than the other pale selections on offer.

There is a very blunt and rusted saw to deal with what’s here, that I feel could most sensibly be deposited back on the beach.

Yeah, I read a decent sized book, drank a few morning coffees, washed my clothes and to some degree myself, and had a shave.

Great to sit on a bench with my elbows on the table most of the day. Listening to the rain pelt in, and a huge wind.

Around 5 pm the rain stopped, but that wind kept blowing.

About 30 packets of two-minute noodles are hanging from an internal rope to keep them away from rats, only a few years past their use-by date, so it looks like lunches are sorted for my stay. Might as well save some muesli bars from my race out from Big Bay.

I used some mouldy cheese to deal with mice I saw, but it doesn’t look like they make their way into the inner room where I’m stationed.

The heavy rain shows exactly how weather dependent this route is. It hasn’t been super wet here, I’ll ask Robert tomorrow how much is actually fallen, but is gonna be at least another 24 hours before Gorge River would be passable.

I’ve got two smaller rivers, Ryans Creek, and Hacket River to cross before Awarua Point. Awarua River at Big Bay itself is majorly tidal, but fortunately a three-wire bridge is only a short distance upstream. Most of the creeks on the Hollyford Track have three-wire bridges, except for the one just at the south end of Big Bay, McKenzie Stream. It would be an issue to cross after heavy rain.

I’m hoping for three days decent days forecast when I leave here, after another three nights maybe in the hut, because I’ll be camping, plus is not fun walking on days like today unless there is an empty hut at the end.

Even though the rain has stopped falling you wouldn’t get across Gorge River now, even with a boat. It’s quite brown water rafting territory.

Interesting to see how quickly it goes down, but the Gorge and tributary Jerry Rivers have enormous catchments.

Just pleased I made it to shelter yesterday. Just as well I didn’t have another night camping.

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