Day 235, Friday 13 April 2018
I went back to Te Rau Puriri Regional Park today, which I last visited in December, but on that occasion I didn’t venture beyond the carpark. This time I walked down the track which leads to Waipiro Bay, a sandy beach which is supposed to be the best on the south Kaipara coast. The track was easy walking, mostly downhill, and included a field of cattle and another of sheep. Every metre or two along the track I saw a cricket. Normally crickets live out of sight and are only evident from their nocturnal chirping, so this must be a turning point in their life cycle when they move into the open to mate or perhaps they’ve exhausted their food supply.
After about 30 minutes walk, the track came within cooee of the beach, but a fence clearly designed to keep humans out (not just livestock) separated the track from the beach. At this point the track made a U-turn and headed back inland. I followed it for another 10 minutes, at which point it was still heading inland and starting to climb again. I was confused; perhaps I had somehow missed a fork in the track and gone in the wrong direction. As it was mostly uphill going back to the carpark, I decided to call it quits.
Back at the carpark I consulted a map and found that there was a point to pass the fence – a gate presumably – which I had failed to notice as I looked in dismay at the track heading back inland. I feel a little foolish, but I did get some good exercise!
Distance travelled: 163 km. Total distance so far: 30,549 km