Day 69. Richmond Range – Slaty Hut. January 9, 2016.
Rocks Hut km 1836 to Slaty Hut km 1861
I was the first to leave in the morning. Ridgeline walking gave lots of nice views. On one of the high points Sean and Arno caught up to me.
At Browning Hut I saw Sophia, who I had met on the ferry.
We crossed the river a bunch of times assuring another day of wet feet.
It was a monster climb of 900 meters to Stearval hut which had a great view.
The track was all above tree line between last 2 huts. It was sunny with very light wind…. perfect. I could see Nelson, Marlborough Sounds and layers of mountains.
I am now at Slaty Hut. We have 10 people in a 6 person hut. 4 on the floor. I got the last bunk. Leo, that shared our awesome camper van hitch to Nelson) was such a sweet heart. He traded me top for bottom bunk. Slumber party!
There is no flat ground for camping near this hut. It will be interesting to see what happens in the next few years as the numbers of Te Araroa hikers increase. It is putting tremendous pressure on the track, outhouses, hut space and other resources.