The noise coming from the cabin a joining our one at the Kiwi Holiday Park had us mention it to the Park Operators.  We don’t mind noise till late on the left side of the midnight hour; but when it reaches the 4am on the right side, enough was enough.  We could have taken matters into our own hands however choose to avoid confrontation.  Would you interrupt a species in the animal kingdom having sexual intercourse?  Viagara must surely have been in the concoction somewhere as they were under the influence somewhat too!

We knew they would address the behaviour and offered us a lift to the starting point of where we were going to meet up the walking trail again – the Makahika Outdoor Pursuits Centre.

Situated approx. 1.7 km from the farm exit of the Mangahao-Makahika Section of the Te Araroa Trail it’s a residential leadership camp.  All ‘trailer-walkers’ are welcome – anytime.  They will readily find a bed for you, and worst case scenario have acres of beautiful grasslands for a tent to be pitched.

John and Sally Duxfield are the Owner/Operators.  John came to meet us as we entered onto the facility.  Sally was absent on overseas travel visiting her daughter in Canada who met a fellow trail walker (from Canada) who had also walked in off the road.  They have become a couple, a cool story shared by John later after the greetings and salutations.

The place was just awesome and set up for teenagers and adults alike to gain some life skills using outdoor pursuits as the education vehicle.  We reflected with the teenage holiday programme we conducted some years back having taken them to Spencer Holiday Park in the middle of winter and having similar skills imparted by residing on-site.  The conversation with John clicked.

John was also informative about the Tararua Range part of the trail.  The Ranges are right on his doorstep and form part of the leadership training they conduct.  The weather at higher altitude is notorious for deteriorating rapidly (gale force winds and heavy rain) so being prepared for its extremities was paramount.  John shared the upcoming five-day weather forecast and suggested alternative routes to huts to consider.

Nick arrived whom we had canoed the Wanganui River with and after re-assessing all the information we had, the decision to head off in the morning under the cloud of rain to reach the second hut doing and alternative route was agreed too.  There was a window of better weather opportunity to get over the exposed ridge we were needing to traverse.

The met office warning of 100 mm of rain between 5am and 2pm as we would be waking up was factored in.  We depart at 10am and should be taking the boots off at the hut by 6pm.

Worst case scenario, we back track back to John where we knew we would be welcomed again.

A plan with a back up plan.  Now let’s hope all goes according to plan!