Day 64

6.50 am Palmerston North campsite (5th march)

Just a quick update on yesterday…. Finally extracted ourselves from National Park and got the Naked bus to Palmy (Palmerston North). Spent morning waiting for Chris to get up ( he had a lie in till 10am!) And doing blog (I can sense my reader craving for the latest installment and don’t Like to leave them waiting).

Met Phil,, the Welsh cyclist who is touring the country. He gave me pause for thought about how tough the cycling might be. He said it is just so different when you have fully laden bike (he was carrying nearly 40kg in front and rear panniers) and he has struggled with the hills and headwinds sometimes only managing 35km a day. He looked young and fit enough so I may need to allow more time. We may meet up in the south and I got his details to let him know when I’d be there. Phil had been travelling since August and been in India and Nepal where he’d got so sick he’d been on a drip in hospital for 3 days. He advised against doing Everest base camp as it is just packed out with tourists and is “ruined” with heaps of dirt. He thinks Anapurna circuit is the one to do instead (take note Elyse!).

Had our free pies for lunch (were given them last night when bought fish and chips….guess I must have looked hungry!) And packed up to be ready in good time for the 1.30 bus. This turned out to be a smaller shuttle bus to connect with the bigger coach in Turangi.

Had a little bit of time to wait in Turangi and after whopping Chris in arm wrestles we went over to get some money from ATM. Who should we meet there but Annie the French Canadian TA walker. Had a very quick catch up as bus was due in. She was in good health but had hitched up with cyclist guy she’d persuaded to walk with her but he had now got a foot infection and there were held up in Turangi whilst he got this sorted.

vBus waswas really stuffy and full but eventually rolled into a damp Palmy just after 6. The walk to campsite is about 2km and was a pertinent reminder to our bodies and feet particularly that we are back into walking mode for next 9 days. We pitched tents and walked back into town as I was treating chris to a birthday meal. This just had to be Burger Fuel and chris was introduced to “the bastard” and chicken tenders.

Very very full we winded our way back to camp and collapsed into our cacoon like tents.

We are going to resupply and also sort out my tent poles before heading off to them there hills (the imposing and trepidous Tararuas).

Will keep you posted and get some photos uploaded when I can.

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