“What are you training for?” he said…. “Nothing exactly,” I replied “just so glad to be able to move again!” I had met this couple briefly the night before in the pouring rain at the campsite when I had knocked on their door to see if they minded if I pitched at the end of their campervan, a sheltered spot.
We had them bumped in to each other on the Charming Creek walk and got talking. I went on to explain to him that I had lived with pain for two years, which made it very hard to do any form of exercise, but was now seeing a real difference and felt great to get moving again. However I think his question planted a seed…. what was I training for…..
I have come across many people recently that are either on walks, just finishing great walks or have done them in the past, and always been in awe, to carry everything you need for 4/5/6 days and book huts to stay in, and carry everything for every eventuality, still makes my head kinda boggle!
However his question got me wondering, and after finishing 22km that day, I wondered with my new found energy how far I could go.
The next day I was out exploring the beautiful Karamea region and thought well I will just find a 10km walk and see how I go with that… 16kms later, and having found stunning limestone arches and a beautiful tarn and getting slightly lost, was back at the car still feeling pretty good!
In the past this would have meant a meal out either breakfast or lunch, some snacks for the car and probably a bottle of wine, but today there was none of that just good ‘homecooked’ food and a 12km walk at Arthur’s Pass.
Felt bad when at 8km got to the point of heading back, and got offered a lift as walking along the road, and actually said no as I wanted to clock the kilometres up! I’d got in to my head that 75 would be amazing for me to achieve in 5 days.
That night sleeping between the railway and the main road, with the threat of alpine parrots attacking my tent, sleep proved a tad elusive….. However next day saw me heading again towards Christchurch, just north to visit a friend, and who I said I would be with late afternoon just had a quick walk to do on the way…..
Haha! When you are surrounded by mountains, should be a pretty clear sign that this isn’t going to be quick or easy! Bearing in mind I really only wanted to clock up the kilometres, I should have got double for this lot as 10 of it was uphill, and downhill was just as taxing, slipping and sliding on dry pine needles! An absolute mission, but so awesome to have made it! Here’s me at the top!
So that meant I had 9 to do on the Friday, added flat in to my google search for walks around Christchurch(!) I found a lovely one through a pine forest and back along the beach.
Set out yesterday, had got myself some merino socks as recommended and giving my legs some sunshine in my new shorts. It was only on the return leg, which was pretty tough going in the head wind that I remembered I didn’t like odd numbers and a nice round 80 would be much better as that would also make it a nice round 50miles.
And so that is what I did, even if the last bit saw me working around the green playing fields where I was parked to do the final metres!
So who knows what I might go for in the future, but as I say in the video above, it’s not bad for the girl who could barely walk 50metres up her friend’s driveway before Christmas!
Day 1 – Charming Creek 22kms, easy going
Day 2 – Oparara Basin 16km, stunning arches, some hills
Day 3 – Arthur’s Pass 12km, some hills, some bogs, wet feet
Day 4 – Oxford 16km, ridiculous mission
Day 5 – Spencer’s Park, 14km nice and flat, albeit very windy!