28 km total 2500 km
Finally some mountains again. The track soon leave the lake shores and gets up through a beech forest in a small valley up a saddle direction Ahuriri valley. The landscape remind me of Switzerland a lot. I enjoy the walk despite the sun shining high that day. The trail goes then steeply down through rocks and then pass some wetland and paddocks before a last steep down hill to the river. Oh yeah : Ahuriri River. I am about to make some big mistakes here. First was to not stop to assess the situation. Crossing so much rivers gives you a false sense of security. Then I saw my other hiker friends crossing a little bit downstream. The second mistake is when I decide to walk the shortest distance straight to the other side of the river. Two step in the river I realize the current is much more powerful than it looked like. I try another step forward but the bottom of the river is slippery as hell. Although the water is only knee deep I can hardly stay upright. That’s then I found out that I can’t cross here. And as I turn around I loose my foothold and go for a swim. Everything happened fast and I finally get out of the water. My heavy backpack wasn’t really helpful either. I then try to get my thing together and find out my sunglasses went for a swim… Damnit! I am almost totally wet as I take a second attempt at the crossing at a much better place. Once on the other side I sit down to think. Neither underestimate the nature. That is a good lesson for today. After pitching my tent I try to dry my wet stuff out. My MP3 player is dead and my phone is acting strangely. My camera somehow survived the unplanned swim. Let’s hope that tomorrow will be a dryer day.