Te Araroa

I walked New Zealand’s 3000 km Te Araroa trail in a little under 5 months in 2017/18. It was my first long distance hike with a trail community and this is where I quickly picked up the trail name ‘Cosmo’. I wrote all the stories down while I was hiking and turned them into blog posts covering the entire trail, alongside the many, many pictures I took. All the links can be found below!

Start date + point: 9 November 2017, Cape Reinga
Finish date + point: 1 April 2018, Bluff
Total distance walked: 3,041 km / 1,890 mi
Total days: 143
Walking days: 120
Zero days: 23
(Of which, Rest/Resupply days: 15, Bad weather/Cyclones: 6, Injury: 2)
Average distance per day: ~25.3 km / 15.7 mi

What I will miss: Blue lakes, Impressive mountainscapes, Bunnies bunnies bunnies, Trail family!
What I won’t miss: River crossings, Non-existent trail maintenance, Farmland, Walking through fields of cows with intimidating frowns
Expectations that weren’t met: New Zealand doesn’t look like Lord of the Rings (but Iceland all the more!)
Favourite sections: Tongariro (Northern Circuit), Richmond Range, Waiau Pass
Moments of confusion: Waking up to a frozen tent and shoes, Snow at Tongariro
Favourite animal (not including bunnies): A tiny green bird the size of my thumb
Scariest animal seen: Giant stick insect
Animal tent attacks: Numerous, Woke up to two mouse-sized holes in my tent in the Tararua Ranges
Most dangerous elements on trail: Electric fences, Rivers
Hut experiences: One!
Famous last words: ‘I feel like it’s starting to get a bit difficult now’, – me, less than two kilometres before reaching Bluff
Trail mantra: POSITIVITY


Te Araroa : Cosmo’s Gear Advice for the First Time Thru-Hiker


Te Araroa (Part 1) : 90 Mile Beach, day 1-5

Te Araroa (Part 2) : The Muddy Forests, day 6-9

Te Araroa (Part 3) : Getting Into It & Getting Lost, day 10-15

Te Araroa (Part 4) : Back on Track & Trail Names, day 16-20

Te Araroa (Part 5) : Pesky Water Crossings on the Long Road to Auckland, day 21-26

Te Araroa (Part 6) : The Roadwalk Everyone Else Seemed to Skip, day 27-34

Te Araroa (Part 7) : Forest After Forest And… The Timber Trail!, day 35-45

Te Araroa (Part 8) : The Battle With The Cold In Tongariro, day 46-53

Te Araroa (Part 9) : The Whanganui River Journey, day 54-57

Te Araroa (Part 10) : Goodbye Bee, and Hello Tararuas, day 58-66

Te Araroa (Part 11) : The Final Push to Wellington, day 67-73

Te Araroa (Part 12) : An Easy Start and The First Real Richmond Mountains, day 74-85

Te Araroa (Part 13) : Waiau Pass and Loving It, day 86-92

Te Araroa (Part 14) : Not What I Was Expecting… The Long Slog to Rakaia River, day 93-100

Te Araroa (Part 15) : Rivers and Cyclones Do Not Match, day 101-112

Te Araroa (Part 16) : Taking It Easy & A Last River Challenge, day 113-116

Te Araroa (Part 17) : Trailburn On The Motatapu Track, day 117-126

Te Araroa (Part 18) : The Routeburn Detour and The Struggle to Keep Going, day 127-131

Te Araroa (Part 19) : Fall Sets in and Then I… Fall, day 132-136

Te Araroa (Part 20) : An Injured Flip to Bluff & The Last Miles Alone, day 137-144