My training for the Milford Sound walk is gradually ramping up... Yesterday I walked two hours in to the Te Apiti lookout, and back out again. (I don't think it used to take me two hours to get that far!) I walked uphill on the main track, then finished off the downhill down the Tawa Loop section. There were a few muddy patches on the main track- but Tawa Loop excelled itself with mud! I think I might give it a few weeks to dry out before I do that section again...
Here's the Strava track of what I did.
And here are the altitude changes...
The recent rain had stopped and it was a lovely day for walking, but the waterfall at the start of the track was still running quite full.
I saw my first nikau flower of the season.
And this fungus was full after the rains.
This is the view from Te Apiti lookout. You can see many of the windmills, and further to the left you also see Ashhurst.
There are more up and down sections once you pass the top of the Tawa Loop, but there are also some lovely flat ridge top sections through the trees.
It is probably about three years since I was on this section of the Gorge, and it was odd how I had forgotten the 'timings' I used to know so well between the different lookouts etc. But I remembered this 'gap' in a fallen log as a 'marker' of having finished the first section of the climb. It has decayed a little more, but was still the same 'old friend.'
And just to finish off, here is a pic of one of the many muddy sections downhill on the Tawa Loop track...
It's not usually this bad though! And I had a wonderful walk.