Summer today, hot.

Yesterday was quite a big day and I didn’t emerge from my tent as frisky as usual. Some dog walkers were startled when I sprang out of the vegetation with my pack onto the nearby bridge.

Then it was straight into a 600m hill climb. By the time I was at the top it was warm, no clouds.

The weather forecast was the briefest ever: New Zealand — Fine.

As it turned out the going up part was easier than going down, the trail deteriorated and by the time I reached the Arrow River, ie, the bottom, I sat in the shade of a large willow for an overly long period. It was clear there was no enthusiasm for proceeding to Roses Hut on the Motutapu Track. Fortunately there is an official DOC campsite here at Macetown so I wandered along there, tent up just after 3 30 and an afternoon nap seemed necessary.

This is an old gold mining area starting with the initial rush in 1862, and dribbling on until around 100 years ago. Two of the original buildings have been restored but there’s some evidence of the 50 year occupation, piles of rocks where the gold mining took place and small piles of rocks around from old chimneys. But unless you know the history you might well miss all that, the efforts of a whole community has just evaporated.

I guess the early miners did well but after that it was slow dangerous work, terrible conditions in winter.

I haven’t come so far but I’m basically knackered today. Maybe I’ll work up some vigour for tackling another 600m climb tomorrow.

I’d better get to work on reducing some of that food loading.

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A guide to the night’s accommodation: Macetown campsite

The Macetown campsite is under those old trees. | Macetown campsite, Arrow River near Arrowtown
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