The journey was undertaken on foot, by mountain bike and by sea kayak - the thinking being that these alternative forms of self-propelled transport would add some 'spice' to the trail and could be offered as alternatives to walking (and, in turn, provide employment for local operators). The North Island route is just over 1600.0km long, and the South Island just under 1400.0km. Te Punga Homestead – 2929 Whanganui River Rd, 06 3428239. You also need to know what survival equipment to carry and how to avoid getting hypothermia… A moderate level of fitness is all that is required to make a realistic attempt at a through-tramp.". It was refurbished by local members of the Te Araroa Trust. People clapped him through, brought him cups of tea, waved and tooted from cars, screeched to a halt by the entire busload. New Zealanders have coined the word tramping, which I like to define as extreme hiking – the Te Araroa Trail gives the hiker a proper taste of what this means. Details about where to post to are in the trail notes but these need to be posted ahead of starting the South Island section. The Te Araroa trail is best tackled north to south, beginning from … He has written an account of the journey. Te Araroa is NZ's walk of a lifetime. But consider also New Zealand conditions, and especially the South Island, where the Te Araroa Trail is more rugged than the North Island section. Each trail guide maps and lists important hiker waypoints such as water sources, tenting sites, junctions, road crossings, resupply information, and many others. Esther James. /records/22777165. What are the best resources? The North Island - The Te Araroa Cake I’m no baker and to be quite honest I wasn’t particularly well-versed in the ins and outs of long-distance hiking before I started the Te Araroa Trail. These are their stories. The first person recorded as walking the length of New Zealand was the indomitable Esther James, architect, inventor and fashion-model. You can show your support and with recieve rewards. The trail is best tackled north to south, beginning from the top of the North Island at Cape Reinga in late spring. Further resupply boxes, if walkers are not looking to hitchhike out to towns, need to be sent to Boyle Village and Arthur's Pass. The vast majority of these walkers were surprised by the Te Araroa, especially the North Island section. As it was, it would have been unwise to continue had my injury recovered because the seasons were already starting to change and I still had 1,000km left to walk. The general rule is that the first two weeks are the hardest – four to five days walking down a monotonous beach followed by a week of muddy forests. Stretching 3,000 km from Cape Reinga, at the top of the North Island, to Bluff, at the bottom of the South Island, the TA is defined by its challenging terrain, unpredictable weather and navigational obstacles, and just may be the toughest of the world’s major thru-hikes. All rights reserved. If you come from overseas you will notice New Zealanders tend to wear heavy boots, gaiters, shorts over longjohns, heavy Gore-tex rain gear and sturdy packs. My full Te Araroa Trailexperience on and off trail totalled 146 amazing days. He followed bush tracks in the Kaimai-Mamaku Range then exited into Carter Holt Harvey forestry roads that led through to Taupo. Te Araroa goes deep into the central North Island forests before exiting at the foot of Mt Tongariro. The Te Araroa Trail gives the hiker a proper taste of what this means. Sometimes there is no signage at all. You don’t … It’s the Te Araroa Trail in New Zealand or, more appropriately, just Te Araroa, meaning “the Long Pathway in the native Maori language. But the South Island is a different matter, being more remote. The trail conservancy hopes to reduce this amount in future years. Getting to the northern start of the trail requires a bus from Auckland and then a tourist bus from either Kerikeri, Paihia or Kaitaia. Prepping for the Te Araroa is like studying for a difficult test, with … Geoff Chapple's Churchill Fellowship report, The last New Zealand long walker we know of is George Spearing. Visit remote villages, hike coastal cliffs, and savor Kiwi culture at its best. The Te Araroa Trail is different, and that unique character is part of its beauty and part of the challenge in walking it. He took 73 days - November 24 1996 - Feb 5 1997. The TA Trust supplies trail notes and maps on its website which can be downloaded to your smartphone (although I met two walkers – both French – who had printed out all the trail notes and were carrying them in giant ring binders). The temptation to re-write it and ‘tart it up’ with exciting expletives and dripping metaphors has been resisted. Mostly corrugated iron, they can be draughty and are home to legions of mice and rats. The TA website lists safety courses, while New Zealand's Department of Conservation has a brochure on planning backcountry trips here. Mine was a gloriously leisurely thru hike and below is my Te Araroa Trail itinerary. Everyone will give advice on how to prevent and treat blisters. How it compares to other long-distance walking trails. There are not always trail markers so sometimes navigation can be difficult, while several tracks are exceptionally steep, both for ascent and descent. Every dollar makes a difference. Most of Te Araroa’s through-walkers start their epic journey at Cape Reinga at the northern end of the North Island. While I haven't walked any other long-distance trails, I met a heap of people on the TA who had, namely the big trails in the US, the Pacific Crest Trail and the Appalachian Trail. The post office in Kaitaia after the first section down Ninety Mile Beach does a roaring trade with walkers sending home extra weight they've decided not to carry. The 3000km route stretches from Cape Reinga in the north of New Zealand to Bluff in the south. I met several ultra-lightweight walkers (mainly Americans), who had base weights of 6kg. But, weirdly, this is all part of its charm. Information on these areas are in the TA Trust trail notes. Read about my North Island experience, including my favourite sections and getting lost in the Tararua Ranges/ Further south, resupply will need a hitchhike or road walk to the nearest town unless a local trail angel is storing resupply boxes. I met a lot of walkers who weren't carrying water treatment means to save weight and because they believed New Zealand river water was safe to drink. A German girl decided not to carry a first aid kit, countless walkers didn't have personal locator beacons. The trail travels from Cape Reinga on the North Island to Bluff on the South Island, passing through 9 distinct regions on its way. The Far North is a remote region with long, lonely stretches of sand, forests of dense bush, steep hills and fast-rising rivers. In recent years, fast hikers have completed the trail in 100 days. A girl I met tripped off the track and fell two metres. He road-walked SH1 to the Kaimanawa Range, then entered the Ruahines. Originally planned as the Aotearoa Adventure Trail, the newly formed Te Araroa Trust asked the trio to join forces with them. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. Many people choose to only walk the South Island where the "proper" mountains are, but this is almost a disservice to the full trail and misses the numerous highlights of the North Island, including the town and country culture of New Zealand. The Te Araroa Trust suggests 50-80 days per island. While there is no permit or fee needed to walk the trail, a permit is required to walk the Queen Charlotte Track at the top of the South Island. Geoff also kept a blog of his walking expeditions and in 2001 produced a study of international long walking trails as part of a Churchill Fellowship. Te Araroa means “The Long Path” and so it is. One of the particular advantages of this trail is that New Zealand has no bears, mountain lions, snakes, poisonous insects or insect-borne diseases, meaning there is one less thing to worry about. Support the trust today so that you can enjoy the trail tomorrow, either one day at a time, or all 3000km! She was only able to get back on the track due to having a walking companion that day. Te Araroa is New Zealand’s premier long-distance hiking trail, stretching 3000 km (1860 mi) across the country’s two main islands. Te Araroa is the birthplace of noted Māori politician Sir Āpirana Ngata. What followed was an 18 year labour of love to turn Te Araroa into reality, picking up many willing contributors along the way. Not much river access. Their stories give us a powerful insight not just into Te Araroa but to New Zealand. It is situated 175 km north of Gisborne city, along State Highway 35 between Tokata and Awatere. It's known for its thick, green native forests, jagged peaks, golden sand beaches, 'clean green' image, friendly people, interesting bird life and excellent meat pies. What Te Araroa offers is a snapshot view, at walking pace, of the best of New Zealand. In addition, a resupply box needs to be sent to St Arnaud at the end of the section because there is no adequate resupply shop. She was working for the New Zealand Manufacturers' Federation promoting buying New Zealand-made goods during the depression. He went North Cape, Cape Reinga, Kaitaia, Herekino, Kerikeri, Whangarei, Warkworth, Puhoi, Albany, Auckland, Hamilton, Te Awamutu, Te Kuiti, Taumarunui, National Park, Raetihi, Pipiriki, Jerusalem, Wanganui, Marton, Bulls, Palmerston North, Masterton, Wellington. A through-hike of the Te Araroa trail will take four to six months depending on walking speed, distance covered each day (some walkers clock 50km days – on good tracks – once their trail legs kick in), whether you decide to hitchhike or miss sections, possible injuries and weather conditions. Please help UKHillwalking continue to provide varied and free content by becoming an official UKH Supporter. I met one girl who fell and gave herself a concussion on another. Meanwhile, a donation to the TA Trust of NZ$250 per Island walked is recommended to ensure maintenance and management of the trail. (Updated 25 September 2020) Basemap legend. Logistics can be a nightmare too, making decision-making challenging and forcing hikers to walk longer distances than they might like just to get to the next accommodation point. Located 7 km north of Atene, 2 km south of Koroniti and 43 north of Whanganui. At an average of 25 kms a day, the trail takes 120 days to walk – four months. But, in his book From North Cape to Bluff (A.H.& A.W. So far, all we’ve asked is that you visit and interact with the site, but we are now in uncertain times. It is known for its electrical sub-station that supplies the lower central North Island (visible off in the distance at right as you approach the village) and the historic Glaxo factory beside the road at your right. To bring Te Araroa to life, Geoff walked New Zealand himself - covering the North Island in 1998, then the South Island in 2002. Again, hitchhiking to and from Bluff is also possible. He took one of the earliest digital cameras, a laptop and a mobile phone and posted stories of his journey. Walking on sand, which gets into your shoes, with wet feet, because you can't escape the tide, is a recipe for blisters. However, this was impractical when I needed to treat water collected from a tap and because of the time taken to pump river water it increased the time sandflies had to bite and suck my blood. It's the one word most commonly used in conversations. Tramping the full length of the trail generally takes three to six months. Chris had, in 1992, walked the entire Appalachian Trail in the USA, and came back home with the same vision for New Zealand. For a first long-distance walk, the Te Araroa Trail is hard, especially as you're still learning about your kit, your body and your food requirements. It is an incredible gesture and quite a lot of work. The TA really is a grand mix of urban, rural, and wilderness hiking. Bad weather closed in, strong winds lifted him off his feet, but he made it out, crossed farmland to Ashhurst, road-walked to Shannon, then traversed the Tararuas, linked with the Rimutaka Incline trail , road-walked to Lake Ferry then round the coast to Cape Palliser. Being the first person to walk the length of New Zealand was just one of James’ adventures. Many are also exposed and weather dependent. India is a stunningly diverse country for walking, and every Himalayan state and trekking route has its own special character. Some of the huts only sleep six people, meaning walkers will still need to carry a tent in case huts are full, which is becoming increasingly common. Te Araroa, Cape Reinga: Address, Te Araroa Reviews: 4.5/5. The Te Araroa, or “the long pathway” in Maori, is a 3000km trail that passes from the northern tip of New Zealand’s North Island to the southern tip of the South Island. You wouldn’t be walking the TA without all this, so give something back for that privilege and to make it even better by donating to the Te Araroa Trust . If you appreciate UKHillwalking then please help by becoming a UKH Supporter. Perhaps unsurprisingly, it's gained a reputation for being challenging - but it also looks fantastic. * Tourism booming, people visiting Te Araroa trail The mid section of Te Araroa, which covers the upper South and lower North islands, is becoming a … Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. Destination GuideNew Zealand's Great Walks In the decades since, many other Te Araroa walkers have also recorded and shared their journeys. The Te Araroa is a 3,000km trail stretching from Cape Reinga in the North of New Zealand to Bluff, in the very south, through beaches, volcanoes, forests, mountains and cities. Read more, Heading south: Starts at Cape Reinga and finishes in Bluff, Estimated number of through hikers each season: About 2000, Cost for a through-hike: NZ$7,000-$10,000 (£3,500-£5,000), Number of river crossings: Several hundred, Non-walking days: Six days kayaking, one day cycling, Longest section between resupply points: Nine days, Number of blisters: 12 (at the same time) after two weeks. During 1931 and 1932 James walked 2500km from Spirits Bay to Bluff through New Zealand towns and communities. Furthermore, the water tanks at huts can be contaminated with possum droppings or dead rats. Not all who walk Te Araroa describe their adventure online, but those who do leave a vivid record. Meanwhile, the road walking is monotonous and frustrating. Despite New Zealand's clean, green image and its sparkling clear river waters, New Zealand has a nasty secret – a lot of its waterways are actually highly polluted. As a backup I also carried a rather heavy Steripen. Katrina Megget offers the lowdown on this classic Kiwi mega-tramp, and advice on gear and logistics. If you do not take the opportunity to DONATE TO THE TE ARAROA TRUST, and not just $20. The general theory seems to be: the lighter the kit, the faster you can walk, the more distance you can travel, and the less injury you will sustain. Self-contained cottage ($150/double) or camping ($25/site). Detailed information. Te Araroa means “The Long Path” and so it is. Buying a backcountry hut pass from the Department of Conservation will be needed. Te Araroa (TA), or “The Long Pathway,” is a hiking trail across the North and South Islands of New Zealand. Some will work, some not. This is what is written on the Te Araroa Trail website: "Tramping many of the Te Araroa's tracks requires the bush craft skills of an experienced backcountry tramper. The Te Araroa Trust does an amazing job of offering these on their site to be downloaded FOR FREE! This is a guide for people wanting to through-hike the Te Araroa Trail in New Zealand going from south to north. The old man - founder of A.H. and A.W. "I must honestly say that I did not." Page last updated: Oct 31, 2020, 10:32 AM. He was bitten by wild dogs just beyond that town, but kept beach-walking down the western coast, kayaked across the Hokianga and Kaipara Harbours, went on through Woodhill Forest to Muriwai and the Waitakere Ranges. Ref: PAColl-5744-10. This is further complicated by the fact that 40% of the trail is on private land where wild camping is not allowed – in recent years some walkers have ignored this, which puts future trail access across these lands in jeopardy. Looks like we have a... Iran may get a bad press, but behind the headlines is a stunning country of mountains. There were plenty of rest days – 29 to be exact, with 12 on the North island and 17 on the South island. The Te Araroa trail is diverse and potential walkers should expect beach walking, road walking, exceptionally muddy native forests, traversing bustling cities, climbing active volcanoes, crossing farms with paddocks of bulls, six days canoeing down a river, majestic mountain trails, and crossing tidal estuaries and more than 200 rivers. Written by: McKenzie Barney. Death from crossing rivers is one of the top contributors to deaths in the New Zealand backcountry. They consist of a fireplace, a cooking bench and sleeping bunks. It is an authentic account interpreted from the pages of his logbook, with foreword by Graeme Dingle MBE ONZM. If you were to walk all of it, it would take five months! A smelly old tramper from way back, Rex Hendry returned to New Zealand in the early 1980s after studying and working in Outdoor Education in UK and Europe. About 8km north of Rivertime Lodge on map gridline 5902E. In Nov 2019, I started running the Te Araroa Trail, from Cape Reinga to Bluff. There is a long-drop toilet, without toilet paper, some walk away. There is some debate about the best footwear for the TA. (Prices & Dates) All of them walked the trail their own way. One of the most talked about topics on the trail is kit and how heavy and/or light it is. Within the space of a month I walked in temperatures in the mid-30s and also in snow and torrential rain. In the end you will figure out what works for you but I recommend hardening your feet and breaking in your footwear before starting the walk. Waikato trail notes, including information about accommodation, transport and resupplying; Waikato region trail maps (82 MB) - For more info see Downloads Increasing numbers of walkers start the trail in September – often to avoid getting stuck in a large bubble of walkers – but they run the risk of heavy spring rain and track closures in September and October due to farming and forestry operations. The TA Trust, which manages the trail, recommends that walkers consider a backcountry/bushcraft survival course, especially a river crossing course. Well, it all comes down to planning your resupply strategy on Te Araroa around the way the trail is routed and the facilities that are available. he says. Hiking Trails. For a trail like the TA, that is rugged, remote and potentially dangerous, carrying safety kit is paramount. She also completed other long walks, spent time in Australia diving for coral, crocodile hunting and opal mining. South Pacific ; New Zealand ; North Island ; Northland Region ; Cape Reinga ; Things to Do in Cape Reinga ; Te Araroa; Search. Here is a fast-paced video showcasing the Te Araroa and all its variety: Te Araroa Video Overview Food parcels can be arranged in advance. Indulging in a decidedly un-Scottish form of walking, Ronald Turnbull spends a mollycoddled week in huts on Austria's spectacular Stubai Höhenweg. I also brushed up on my navigating and map reading. About 14% of the trail is road walking with around 40% going over private land, which requires negotiations for through-access with landowners, councils and local indigenous Maori tribes. Hike the best parts of the Te Araroa Trail on the North Island of New Zealand. Along its meandering route, the TA crosses through native bush forests, rural farmland, stunning alpine vistas, and even Auckland’s city center. Several sections of the route intentionally require kayaking and canoeing as well as the aforementioned ferry. Logistics and planning each day's point A to point B walk can be challenging in places, particularly on the North Island. I did a river crossing course in the Lake District before I left for New Zealand. It’s a walking track about 3,000 km long from Bluff at the southern tip of the South Island to Cape Reinga at the top of the North Island that was officially opened in 2011. I might be biased but New Zealand is stunning. 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