In the morning the river is way up, I could have crossed it without a swing bridge yesterday, this morning, no chance.

The bottle green colour from yesterday has changed dramatically, it’s now a deep khaki with a fair few whitecaps. I’ve got my eye on a couple of rocks to see if it’s coming up any more. There’s a great view of the junction with the Crow when I look north from my inside possy. The grass outside has caught some of the mizzle on the seed heads, it’s all looking the sight.

I missed all the rain while sleeping, just some drizzle in big drops in the forest when I go out to make use of the ablutions. No matter, it’s all clearing up today, rain-wise, tomorrow should be okay.

On my way to the Bend I meet a family of four, two teenage kids everyone looking wet due to the 100% humidity and warm temperature. We are all cheery despite the dampness, I’ve dispensed with my raincoat because the drizzle has concluded.

I tell them about the whio/blue duck in the Crow River I saw while crossing the swing bridge next to the hut, it was sitting on what looked like a very slippery rock in the middle of the river, preening, eventually it did a few dives in the swift flowing river water. That was worth the price of admission.

Later, despite having applied my cancer inducing insect repellent to exposed areas of skin I got stung on my arm by a wasp, I had rolled my sleeves up.

That wasn’t supposed to happen. Earlier in the summer I’d had that bumble bee sting on my foot when wearing my jandals and another in the back of my neck. Despite thinking I might succumb to anaphylactic shock I seem to have survived alright.

There were three fishermen in the hut, helicoptered in just as the family were leaving, I had heard the chopper zip down the valley while eating my breakfast and wondered what was happening with such a limited visibility. Man, it was a valley filled with low cloud at the time.

When you get to the staff hut, high on a river terrace, there’s a great view down the Karamea River immediately in front, and the ridge that leads up to the Garibaldi Plateau.

Now, just a couple of days to be out, all that fresh food and a dry bed awaits.

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A guide to the night’s accommodation: Karamea Bend Hut

Karamea Bend Hut, Kahurangi National Park exterior
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