After a forced rest day watching snowfall, Victoria and Emilie continue on their way and climb up to Stag Saddle, the highest point of Te Araroa at 1925m. Spurred on by grey clouds, they make it to Lake Tekapo, where the joy of having finished another section competes with the dread of having to re-enter society.
Making their way across Hakatere Conservation Park, Victoria and Emilie are welcomed by a cold South Island night and an unexpected memorial for a local hut mouse. With another front rolling in, they manage to get to Double Hut just before the snow falls.
What’s the hardest part of any tramp? A return to civilization. The Glen Eden Venturers tackle over 80km along the Rees Dart Track and while feeling reluctant to rejoin society, they become inspired to take their knowledge and train young scouts in backcountry skills.
After taking a short break with friends, Victoria and Emilie rejoin the Trail and have their first kea encounter. As the weather packs in, they hunker down to wait out the storm. Anxiety pays an unexpected visit and reminds Victoria that ‘just like the weather, this too shall pass.’
Crossing the Harper Pass, the wild west coast welcomes Victoria and Emilie as they bathe in its icy waters, explore its lush forests, and meander along its rocky riverbanks.
Celebrating their crossing of the Waiau Pass, Victoria reflects on her former fast-paced lifestyle and how truly precious it is to have this mummy daughter time in nature.
“I feel nutritionally deficient, my stomach a gnawing void after 60+ days of trail walking on meagre rations.” While made worth it by the stunning views and company of friends, Victoria faces the harsh reality of packing another 14 days worth of food and trying to keep a party of two nourished amidst long days of climbing in Nelson Lakes.
In this eventful portion of their trip, Emilie once again shows her bravery as she gets stung by a swarm of wasps and takes a serious tumble that requires Victoria to act fast. Amidst it all, this powerhouse team meets new friends and soaks up the magic and healing held within the Richmond Ranges.
Victoria and Emilie continue to explore the many coves and beaches of the breathtaking Queen Charlotte Track, rediscovering the magic of low tide and nature's smallest sea creatures.
Being the sole companion to a seven-year-old isn't always easy for either party. On the start of their South Island trek, Victoria faces some difficult memories from her past and contemplates how much life has changed since her corporate days.
Do you want to take the next step in volunteering and make conservation a lifestyle? Mary Jowett shares how the 'Adopt a Plot' scheme allows volunteers to take ownership over a plot of land and save its native vegetation without the use of spray.
An extra rest day replenishes this mummy daughter tramping team. After saying goodbye to new friends, they set off on the next stage of their Manawatu adventure while Victoria contemplates the shortcomings of 'thru-hiking.'
Victoria and Emilie roll up their sleeves and help restore Stanfield Hut, giving back to the backcountry hut system that has sheltered them along the Te Araroa trail.