I spend most of my week planning for Saturday. – You see, Saturday’s are my “long run” day and for the latter part of this year, James’ has taken it upon himself to spend his Saturday mornings out on the trail with me.
Generally speaking, I spend my week reading about different trails in the area and narrow down the myriad of choices to 2-3 which I then present to James on Friday when he get’s home from work. The conversation tends to go something like this ..
Me – So, I was thinking – we could do section 1 of the Hillary Trail which is 11km one way. If we do an out and back I could finally earn that half marathon medal in the cabinet.
J – OK ..
Me – BUT if my knee packs in, I’d need you to run back at the turn around point and get the car.
J – OK ..
Me – Or, we could go to Karekare and do the Zion Hill Loop but come back along the beach ..
J – OK ..
Me – So what do you want to do?
J – Bethells …
So we invariably end up at Bethells –
I don’t really mind because even though I run there regularly it still takes my breathe away with it’s beauty, although I’d say that James prefer’s running at Bethells because it doesn’t take us long and (even I) can’t get lost. 😉
Although there was that one time I detoured up Houghton’s track and couldn’t get back down, so instead of a leisurely meander around Lake Wainamu I ended up in the Cascade Regional Park trying to work out how to get back – that was when I decided it would be wise to invest in a map reader.
Saturday morning we turned up at the Lake track entrance before 8am to find the carpark was already full. At a guess I’d say it was the same large group we had seen on a prior Saturday morning running the dunes. Instead of being “one of those creative parkers” we headed across the road to the Te Henga Walkway carpark. I then turned to James, pointed towards the walkway entrance and said “Hey let’s run up here first, we can come down from the trail at O’Neills and run back along the beach to join the loop walkway”
I mean what could go wrong – right? ..
We’ll perhaps you completely forgot to take the tide into account, (which cuts off your access) then decide to follow some footsteps you can see heading inland to bushwhack your way through what is probably private land.
Obviously I had complete faith in my sense of direction and when I couldn’t work out how to get over the headland we stayed inland and headed back towards the trail we had initially came down. I was sure that as long as I kept the sound of the waves crashing onto the shore on my left we would eventually make our way back to the trail.
I don’t think James had quite as much faith in my navigational skills (as he kept suggesting we turn back) but after leaving him (muttering to himself) to clamber up to a high point to get a view, I proudly exclaimed that we were only about 100m’s away from getting back onto the trail we came down earlier ..
I knew it! I didn’t even need to consult a map! Which I guess is lucky since I wasn’t carry one.
Not all those who wander are lost – but some of them might be .. albiet temporarily. 😉
Till next time