Lake Kaurapataka Creek to Arthur’s Pass Village – 26kms
Total – 471kms
We aimed to be at the Morrison footbridge by 9am, thinking it would be a fairly easy walk but it turned out to be a horrible track through thick bush and lots of fallen trees to find our way around, or over, or through. The track was steep in places and slippery. It was also poorly marked and we lost the trail a few times. In hindsight we should have taken an easier route across the Otira River to SH73 and walked that to the bridge but that is not the official TA trail. The track we used is the “flood route” for when the river is too high. It took us three and a half hours. Scott got the latest weather report that confirmed the rain and bad weather coming through tonight and tomorrow morning which meant it is very possible we would be hold up at Goat Pass hut for a day or two waiting for river levels to drop if we were to continue up the Deception river track. It would be an awesome hike up over the pass that way but I am already behind schedule due to weather and I want to keep moving forward. Scott and Jane also decided not to go that way so we walked the road for 19kms to Arthur’s Pass Village.
We stopped at the Otira Hotel and I had a pie, slice of lollie cake and two bottles of Powerade. We were sitting outside the hotel for well over an hour and then carried on up the road. It was getting really hot. The walk over Arthur’s Pass was really fun. The views were great but we had to be careful with traffic. There is not much room in places. The bridges were fun. We had to wait for gaps in traffic from both ways and then double time it across. It got really towards the tip but was fine on the way down. Scott had called ahead to a backpackers and secured three beds for us. We found a bush track for the last few kms to the village. Quick stop at General store for chips and a drink then after showers we went over to the Cafe next door for dinner and a handle. I had a giant plate of battered hoki with chips and salad.
Tomorrow I will keep walking to Bealey for 15kms and do some resupply to take me through another three days to Lake Coleridge. I can sleep in tomorrow to and shop will be open for coffee at 8am.