top of page

Day 21-25: Totara Park to Jo’s Funny Farm. 638km - 831km - 🥾Te Araroa Trail - The North Island 🇳🇿

Day 21/50 🥾Te Araroa Trail - The North Island 🇳🇿

📍Supported by ZOLEO @zoleolifeeurope #ChallengeWithZoleo

ℹ️Stats: Date: Tuesday 21st November

Weather: hot & sunny all day - until 8pm when it started to rain 🌧️

From: Totara Park

Start time: 6.25am

To: Mercer

End time: 8.10pm

Accommodation: camped

Terrain: roads, roads, motorways, farm lands

🥾Km: 45.1

🦶Steps: 57,343

1️⃣ Stream crossing

1️⃣ hitch - about 3k along the road - Janice.

Total Km: 688/1715 = 40%✅

💰Costs: $0

Subjective feeling out of 10 on:

Enjoyment: 5/10

Fatigue: 6/10

Ease of terrain: 9/10

⭐️Highlights: getting water, snacks and a lift from Janice 🙏

🏔️Challenges: some of the motorway sections - were horrendous - super dangerous - I’m so surprised this is the route.

💭Thoughts: how do you set up the MSR when it rains and not get the inner wet? If you know please share the knowledge!!


Day 22/50 🥾Te Araroa Trail - The North Island 🇳🇿

📍Supported by ZOLEO @zoleolifeeurope #ChallengeWithZoleo

ℹ️Stats: Date: Wednesday 22nd November

Weather: hot & sunny

From: Mercer

Start time: 6am

To: Huntly Camping Ground

End time: 6pm

Accommodation: cabin with a bed 🛌

Terrain: mud, swamp, forest, river beds, beside motorways, through animal 🐄 pastures. Gravel roads, grassy banks.

🥾Km: 22

🦶Steps: 28,158

Hitch 1️⃣6.5k - thanks Mat 🙏

Hitch 2️⃣7.5k (6k from the trail and then 1.5k extra to the campsite 🏕️ - thanks Pourewa 🙏

Total Km: 729/1715 = 42.5% ✅

💰Costs: Cabin $35 ($20 to camp) I decided to spend the extra $15 for the bed and electricity!

Subjective feeling out of 10 on:

Enjoyment: 4/10 averaged it out from between 1 - falling in the swamp - to 8 for having good weather and a bed to sleep in

Fatigue: 8/10 - felt tired out

Ease of terrain: 9/10 - the whole day was tough going and the blister/hot spot on the sole of my foot isn’t helping.

⭐️Highlights: 🚗🚗2x hitch on the road sections.

Getting a small cabin and having my laundry done for free. 🥳 (first time in 3 weeks!!)

⚡️Electricity and being able to charge everything. hot shower 🚿, having a bed 🛌.

🏔️Challenges: everything is damp/wet from last night.

I fell hip deep into a swamp at 7am . 😂

I’m getting a rash on my inner thighs - 🥓where my wet shorts are rubbing.

Two fields of cows 🐄 and I needed to go through the middle. Wasted 20 mins trying to get through.

🦶Blister on the bottom in my left food - can’t/ don’t want to pop it - as it will get infected too easily - as feet are constantly wet and going through mud/water.

💭Thoughts: what would you prefer - fields of cows or walking by the side of the motorway/road- I’d pick the motorway/road every-time! #hatecows 🐄


Day 23/50 🥾Te Araroa Trail - The North Island 🇳🇿

📍Supported by ZOLEO @zoleolifeeurope #ChallengeWithZoleo

ℹ️Stats: Date: Thursday 23rd November

Weather: hot and sunny ☀️

From: Huntly Camping Ground

Start time: 8.30am

To: Hamilton Liam's place

End time: 6.45pm

Accommodation: 🏕️camped

🥾Km: 30.9

🦶Steps: 39,443

🚗 2 Hitch

💰Costs: camping $20, food $120

Subjective feeling out of 10 on:

Enjoyment: 8/10

Fatigue: 3/10

Ease of terrain: 8/10


Day 24/50 🥾Te Araroa Trail - The North Island 🇳🇿

📍Supported by ZOLEO @zoleolifeeurope #ChallengeWithZoleo

ℹ️Stats: Date: Friday 24th November

Weather: rainy and cold most of the day with a few spots of sunshine ☀️

From: 790km marker - old mountain road

Start time: 7.30am

To: Pahautea Campsite 816.4km

End time: 6.45pm

Accommodation: 🏕️camped - free

Terrain: farm land, forest, river paths, roots, mud, boardwalks.

🥾Km: 26

🦶Steps: 33,463

🚗 1 Hitch (rode with fellow TA hiker Annuck) : avoiding the road from Hamilton and being dropped off at Old Mountain Road 790km (thanks Liam 🙏)

Total Km: 816/1715 = 48% ✅

💰Costs: $0

Subjective feeling out of 10 on:

Enjoyment: 5/10

Fatigue: 5/10

Ease of terrain: 9/10

⭐️Highlights: avoiding a big road walk. Setting up the tent in the dry and being in my sleeping bag at 8pm ready for hiker midnight (8.30pm 💤). The tent site is protected by trees so the wind can’t get to me.

🏔️Challenges: Pirongia Traverse - a tough walk going up to a night point of 959m.

Very muddy, rocky, rooty, & slippery stones. 🌳Some steep sections where you needed to use the trees to pull yourself up and help you get across muddy/swampy sections.

💭Thoughts: I can see why they suggest you spend the night at the summit of Pirongia before carrying on. It’s a beast of a walk. The last 3km - super tough going.


Day 25/50 🥾Te Araroa Trail - The North Island 🇳🇿

📍Supported by ZOLEO @zoleolifeeurope #ChallengeWithZoleo

ℹ️Stats: Date: Saturday 25th November

Weather: very cold in the morning- blue sky in the afternoon

From: Pahautea Campsite 816.4km

Start time: 9.10am

To: Jo’s Funny Farm (by 831km marker)

End time: 2.30pm

Accommodation: bed in a garage 🛏️

Terrain: long descent down tramping track - wet, with mud and roots all the way

🥾Km: 6.4km

🦶Steps: 8151

🚗 Hitch 1️⃣ - with Ash (822 - 831) gravel roads and state highway. 9k

Total Km: 831/1715 = 48% ✅

💰Costs: $30 - accommodation + dinner + breakfast

Subjective feeling out of 10 on:

Enjoyment: 7/10 met Robert 🇩🇪, Yawn 🇩🇪, Sophie 🇨🇿, Ash 🇮🇪, Jo 🇳🇿

Fatigue: 8/10

Ease of terrain: 9/10

⭐️Highlights: Meeting Ash on the trail - getting a hitch to the accommodation. Being able to relax from 2.30pm. It’s like a Nero day!

🏔️Challenges: so cold in the morning. I always forget how bad I am when it is cold weather. I just don’t function as well. And I don’t enjoy it.

💭Thoughts: I finally feel as though things are starting to come together with the hike - with my understanding of what I’m going to be doing next - and how I’m gonna be able to make it to Wellington by the 19th Dec



bottom of page