With every new adventure comes many challenges, and my New Zealand Ramble is no exception. Never have I ever been in control of where I go, I just follow adventure races around NSW and work off the map that’s given to me, so this has been a real novelty.
The trip covers 5days and 4nights, the longest expedition I’ve been on, and I’ve now made all the big purchases (like a stove) to be really set up for it.
My team is slowly growing with Angus (GeoQuest competitor) and Ross (fellow 6hr Adventure Racer). I’m searching high and low for my final teammate to make up the minimum number of 4, this includes reaching out to NZ Rovers.
Day 4 of the trip is Christmas Day which while being an amazing opportunity, really limits people’s availability. Seriously though – could you not think of a better way to celebrate Christmas than with 3 other adventurers, kayaking in another country? What a unique experience!
My ramble proposal was submitted to the Crew and approved this week, with more information now to be added on tides, weather, emergency plans etc. Feedback is that the last day of the kayak is very rough open water, so we should try hugging inland and make sure we prepare ourselves for such conditions. Everyone’s “Your doing WHAT?!” response is making me nervous so I’ll be looking very closely into our options for this end of the trip…just in case.
Training so far has been very strength/cardio based with lots of boot camps, PT workouts and I’m back to running again with no knee pain. The season of weekend paddles and mountain bike rides has officially started with a 2hr paddle on the weekend (with dolphins!) and a 1.5hr ride, followed by an impromptu camping trip in the Royal National Park to test out my new tent, mat and stove.
Overall I’m happy with the new gear, the Denali Zephyr l Hike Tent is squashy even for one, but only weighs 1.9kgs – its biggest selling point especially for its price, the Exped Mat was great and compact, and the Soto Muka Stove, while terrifying, cooked extremely well, it gets real hot real quick. Now to plan an interesting, tasty, lightweight and nutritious menu…tacos with beef strips, beans, corn and all the salad was great but left lots of rubbish, which I know can be minimised with the right preparation. The Sea to Summit X Pot stole the show with its extream compact advantages (especially love how 2x Sea to Summit collapsible bowls and a cup fit inside it), its non stick cooking surface, easy to use drainage friendly lid, and best of all large size made cooking for 3 of us easy. I’m glad I finally got to play with my new toys, and it’s given me a whooole lot more to think about for the trip.
Here’s to many more weekends with just as gorgeous photo opportunities!