Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Queen Charlotte Track

With Picton left behind we headed south up Queen Charlotte Drive to a nice walking track called Queen Charlotte Track.

While not one of the famous NZ Great Walks, Queen Charlotte still has a lot to offer. The track stretches for 71 km and can be done in 3-5 days. At the end you can arrange a boat pick-up that will drive you back to your car. A speciality about this track is, that the entire track is open for mountain biking. That's because the track is not very challenging in terms of heights or difficult terrain. However 71 km make the track's challenge its length. The views obtained include secluded bays, some historic sites and the Queen Charlotte Sound.

secluded bay
Queen Charlotte Sound
Curiously enough at the beginning of the track you can find a school. It seemed to be some kind of outdoor and fitness focused school. And when we were walking the track the pupils of that schools crossed us running back to their school. Poor lads looked pretty exhausted and downcast. We hope they don't need to do that every morning.

beginning of the track

Bilge Rat and I discussed whether to do the whole track or just a day walk. We counted the days remaining to us in NZ and rather went for doing the complete Abel Tasman Great Walk [LINK] and only went out for a day's hike here.

Before we started we did something really really stupid. We were both suffering from constipation for some days (most probably due to the strict candida diet [LINK]) and thus took a anti-constipation laxative pill. We thought we'd easily back before the effect kicks in...

Anyway we headed off to a really great hike. The nature was dense and fascinating and the views of the sound really cool.

NZ famous silver fern
snake skin leaf
The main attraction for us were a couple of Weka birds. Just where we made a break for some lunch, two of them started peaking at us from the bush and later searching our gear for treasure. Wekas are treasure hunting birds, ye have to know. Savvy? They are attracted by anything shiny, especially silver and gold, and when they get hold of it, off they are hiding it in their little nests. That's why Aotearoa pirates train them and take them out when'ver they are lookin' for buried booty.

This Weka loved the shiny lock hanging from bilge rat's backpack

That told, we made an u-turn here and headed back for our roach-mobile. However even before we were halfway back the pills kicked in. Shit. Shit. Shit. Bilge Rat took hers earlier than me, so hers kicked in first. Okay, remain calm, I said and then we both started running. Like really fast. We remembered coming across a drop toilet somewhere on the way. So with speed we'd never thought to have the energy for we run for this toilet. Bilge Rat was so fast I couldn't keep up and when I reached the toilet and knocked crying "Bilge Rat? u in 'ere?", all I got for an answer was "Busy! Go away!" in a very Bilge Rat unlike voice.  Desperate I started looking for her here and there and just when I was giving up there she appeared from some side way, telling me she couldn't find the toilet any more and ended up finding another one. Whew.

And what about dead old Scallywag, Scallywag being me? I was crazy, but I thought I could hold it till the end and insisted of walking on. Not a quarter later the pills also kicked in for me and I told Bilge Rat, that I was real sorry but I need to run now and leave her behind. And then I ran. Real fast. I could 'ave run back, you know, but somehow I wanted to press on. I don't exactly know why. Maybe because I knew the toilets at the car park to be real clean and flushy, maybe I just wanted to test me speed. Anyway I run real fast and I made it. Somehow.

Hoh! I even found time to take a group picture for some mountain bikers who looked at me with poppy eyes asking me to help 'em out. Crazy eh? That's your old Scallywag. In the heat of a personal emergency he still finds time to help others out.

I made it in the good last seconds. Wooah. I'll never take those nasty pills again if not needed be. They are nasty and vicious. But all's over now. Lucky us.

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