Te Araroa Trail Day 4 – Ninety Mile Beach
I had a magnificent night sleep last night! Breakfast consisted of porridge with some fresh lemon juice care of our hosts at Utea Park. I and enjoyed a leisurely breakfast, waiting for the tide to go out.
I started hiking in my Xero sandals today and strapped my trainers to my backpack. By lunchtime the sand had started to grind into the balls of my feet. I dressed my blisters again in the late morning – and thanked my lucky stars I’d brought so many alcohol wipes, compeed blister plasters and medical tape! I switched to my trainers at lunchtime.
With 15kms down and 15kms to go I could have easily stopped. I pushed on thanks to a Shapeshifter soundtrack and dreams of a cafe in Ahipara.
This afternoon’s wildlife highlight involved a multitude of seagulls dropping shellfish from a great height onto the hard sand to break them.
During the mid afternoon a huge headwind blew up. Remember when you were a kid and you leaned into the wind with your anorak above your head like a parachute? It was that kind of wind…
Despite hardly being able to stand up straight, and with 2 hours still to go and my knees in great pain, I realised I couldn’t wipe the bloody great grin off my face .
Arrival in Ahipara
The settlement of Ahipara, which I had been looking at in the distance all day, suddenly got closer and closer! With just a short distance to go I saw that someone (a lovely German couple) had written the 100km mark in the sand ❤️. Wooooooo!!!
At 5pm I arrived at Ahipara YHA and set up my tent. I had an amazing hot shower, walked into the village for fish & chips and had a well deserved couple of beers with a bunch of people in the hostel. Looking forward to a rest day tomorrow!!