Twig Adventures

Day 2: Bring on the beach

December 4th Twighlight Beach campground (km12)-Maunganui Bluff Campsite (km41) Mileage: 18mi/29km It was the first full day of mostly beach walking on Ninety Mile Beach, a stretch of beach that is actually only 50mi/80km long. It feels like 90 miles when you have to walk it. I woke around 4am, still feeling the effects of jetlag, so I worked on my blog and enjoyed the sunrise/moonset. My abode for the next 4 months. I decided to take a lazy morning, figuring I would have plenty of time to make it the 29kms to The Bluff campsite, not to be confused with Bluff, the end of the trail over 3000 km away still. I chatted with Shannon, giving pointers on how[…]

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Day 1: The perfect start

December 3rd Cape Reinga Lighthouse(0)-Twighlight Beach campground (12km) Mileage: 7.5/12km All went according to plan today and my years of preparation have finally led to my reality…hiking the Te Araroa! The bus from Auckland departed on time at 7:30 am and I sat in the front seat to get a good view and avoid getting motion sickness. I chatted with a nice kiwi man sitting next to me who was one of the bus drivers, getting a ride back. Along the way, I checked my GPS to find that we were currently driving a part of route! I told the driver to look for me as I was walking the road in this section in a few weeks. I think[…]

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Day 0: Auckland bonus

I didn’t want to stay in the hostel all afternoon, knowing I would just get really tired and want to go to bed early, further putting me off this new schedule. What’s a great cure for jet lag? Walking! How convenient that the TA goes right through the city, following the urban and historic Coast to Coast path. The isthmus here is only 9 km wide (narrowest part of the country), thus possible to walk from one harbor to the other in one day. I didn’t figure I’d make it the whole way but why not knock out a few kms, especially during such gorgeous weather. What a great idea a little bit of slack-packing turned out to be. There[…]

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In-flight Updates

I’m off to a great start. In the line to board my first flight from MIA, a woman behind me said “That’s a really great pack. It’s the smallest one they make, right” I was in disbelief that anyone from Miami would recognize a Hyperlite pack, let alone someone on my flight. We had a short discussion about her plans to climb Mt Rainier with her boyfriend and my grand scheme to live out of said pack for 4 months. She’s a model on her way to a gig in Mexico City. If that doesn’t bash some stereotypes! A friendly, outdoorsy model from Miami. I love it. Then, in what was said to be a completely full flight, there was[…]

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Travel Day!

Well, it’s finally time to get this journey started! My stomach is in knots knowing all the steps involved in just getting to the trailhead. I have a 3hr connecting flight from Miami to Houston this afternoon, then a 15hr! flight to Auckland. Through the miracle of air travel, Friday Dec 1st will cease to exist for me, since I’m passing over the date-line. The flight arrives at 6 am Saturday, Dec 2nd. Talk about a red-eye! In my previous travels to NZ, I was flying from/to Hawaii and the 8hr flights weren’t near as bad. This will be my longest commercial flight yet (not including a trip on the Copenhagen-New London Coast Guard Express: 24 hrs on a very[…]

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