On Saturday morning James and I headed south to the Hunua Ranges.
I don’t think I’ve ever been to Hunua before, although Camp Adair (which we passed) sounded familiar, so I may have gone on a school trip WAY back in the day – but it obviously wasn’t memorable enough for me to be 100% certain.
In fact nothing looked even remotely familiar and I’m quite sure that I’d remember if I’d seen the Hunua Falls before because they’re really quite spectacular – although we very nearly didn’t bother stopping as we pulled into the car park to find a large tour bus, thankfully we had timed it perfectly and they were just boarding to leave …
One gigantic waterfall “all to ourselves.”
I have a feeling the fact it had just started to rain helped with that as we did pass a number of people cowering under shelters en route. We on the other hand, were already wet from running around the Wairoa Loop (approx 2 kilometres down the road) so it didn’t bother us.
One of the loops that I had considered running (the Cossey Gorge, Massey Track 8.3km loop) starts from this point, but after visiting the area (albiet for a very brief waterfall photo op), I’m quite glad that I went with my first choice of running in the Wairoa Dam area, although even that went slightly awry as we couldn’t quite figure out where the f*ck we were in relation to the dotted lines on the map .. (same old, same old).
I will say that it doesn’t help when the first Wairoa Loop Track entrance is not signposted, the second parking area seems to be “the side of the road”, and although I’d see how you could conclude that the campground must be a random patch of grass next to the radio repeater station – you’d be wrong as campground is not actually on the loop track at all!
No wonder it takes me ages to get anywhere .. 😉
The original plan had been to run the outside portions of both the Wairoa Loop & Suspension Bridge Tracks (making one big loop) however, although the map I had made it seem like both tracks start at the same point, they don’t and it wasn’t until we got to the furthest entrance to the Wairoa Loop Track that I realised this.
As such, we ended up only doing the Wairoa Loop Track which incidentally is now James’ favorite track. He kept saying “this is a track I’d really like to run” (and by that he means run at his pace as opposed to mine). I on the other hand was pretty meh – this track started with a climb – a steep one – so I wasn’t quite as enthusiastic as him – but it did start me thinking ..
Me – Do you think if I ran the Suspension Bridge Track and you ran this one that you’d beat me back?
James – Yep – for sure, without a shadow of a doubt
Nothing like a bit of confidence in a man ..
James – You might have a slither of a chance if you leave your phone in the car
Me – Why?
James – Cause then you wouldn’t stop to take photos
That afternoon I told Isabelle that her Dad and I were going to have a race, she asked why since “we ALL KNOW that Dadda is faster”, so I explained that I would only have to go half the distance that he had too.
“Oh! Well he’ll still win but go Mum!”
I’ll show them .. 😉
Till next time