Day 65. Abel Tasman Great Walk. January 6, 2016.
All huts and campsites on the Abel Tasman Great Walk are completely booked. We decided to go anyway. We could do an out and back or hike out of the great walk on one of the few roads. Something would work out.
We tried to take the tourist bus from Nelson but that was also sold out. Its too crowded here. We managed to get there by city bus and 2 great hitches from Carol and Derek. Carol is a local and said a few years ago she picked up someone from the US. He talked non-stop; all about himself. She made up some story about needing to go a different way to get him out of her car. Luckily for us she decided to give Americans another chance. As we were getting out of her car she got Derek to stop for us. He is from Boise, Idaho, and is a fire fighter like Nathan.
At the start of the track there were a ridiculous number of people. It did thin out quickly. It’s no wonder this is such a popular place. It’s gorgeous.
Owen had seen a picture of Cleopatras Pools and wanted to go there. So we did.
It’s off the trail and was very crowded. Dodgy Dave and the Fire Brigade said the best place to jump in was farther upstream. I followed for awhile but it got way too steep, slippery and overgrown. So I turned back, sat down and read a book (on my phone.)
When Nathan and Owen came back they were all smiles. They had jumped off the top of a waterfall. And Dodgy Dave invited them (and me) to spend the night on his sailboat. Camping problem solved.
Dave is spending a few weeks on his boat and loves walking up to these pools and showing a few hardy souls the secret spot. He has his boat parked in Torrent Bay which completely empties out at low tide.
We went back to the boat. Ate. Talked. And played cards. A wonderful evening.