How great is technology! I chatted twice with Brad yesterday -- serendipity for a mom with a traveling son. The first chat was when he was at Twizel and then, later, when he was at Lake Ohau Lodge. At Twizel he had shopped for supplies and was ready to head into the mountains again. He hitched a ride to Lake Ohau from Twizel, having decided in his Te Araroa Trail freestyle manner, to tramp all trails but to hitch most roads.
When we last chatted he was sipping a beer at this beautiful lodge (below) overlooking Lake Ohau, visiting with other guests and staff, blogging, chatting, e-mailing and in Brad's usual style, completely absorbed in multitasking. At the time of our last communication he'd decided to stay for dinner at the lodge with NZ folks he'd met and then head into the mountains for the night.
He will be beginning the East Ahuriri Track, the last track in the Conterbury section of the Te Araroa Trail. This track is a 1 - 2 day tramp, climbing 800 m from Lake Ohau to the Ahuiri River, over the Ohau Range. It goes through both the Ruataniwha and Ahuriri Conservation Parks.
The next e-mail/chat option is in about 7 days, according to Brad's calculations. Once he leaves the East Ahuriri Track he will be in the Otago Section of the Te Araroa Trail, with the first track being the Breast Hill Track, 3 - 4 days, but there's only a car park at the end of this track. No development or opportunity for resupply. Gladstone Reserve Track is next, only 1.5 - 2 hours, with full amenities at a small town on the south end of Lake Hawea. I'm assuming that's where we hear from Brad again, although that's less than 7 days according to the estimates on the Te Araroa Trail site. The town of Lake Hawea has a population of only 300 people so perhaps he's not expecting to find computer power available to trampers.
Happy Tramping Brad!