So we managed to get up at 4 am to start the inlet crossing at 4.30 am. We had to be across by 5.15 am or wait until 2.15 pm.
A small crescent moon in the sky.
Just after 6 am light on the horizon.
And then through the trees. We spent around 90 minutes tramping in darkness with head lamps, and it was very cool to see the stars so clearly. Also saw a possum on the track which was a bit startling as suddenly there are red eyes gleaming at you.
Then a hill climb.
Then Totaranui Beach ahead of us.
Now around 6.30 am.
A nice trail down to the beach.
And a walk through the camping grounds there. As there is vehicle access, this is the largest campsite – up to 1,000 people camping there.
We stopped here for breakfast and cooked ourselves some porridge.
Then headed off on the high tide track.
A historic house now used as an education centre.
And up another hill of course.
Lots of trees like this.
A wood pigeon in a tree.
This little beach was stuck between two rock formations – very isolated and private.
Looking down to Mutton Cove.
We had a stop at Mutton Cove. If I was tenting I’d camp here. A very small but beautiful area with trees, grass and beach access.
A great view of Whariwharangi Bay.
A grass track heading down and then to the hut which unlike the others is not on the beach but 500 metres inland.
Finally the hut in sight. We got there before midday but as we started at 4.30 am it took us seven hours or so, with breakfast and rest stops. The longest day of the tramp.
The hut is a restored homestead and absolutely lovely. We got an upstairs room. Only sleeps 20. Lots of grass around it, so spent afternoon reading books on the lawn and swimming down at the beach.
Tramp almost done now. Just a two hour walk out on Monday to Wainui Bay.