Tuesday, December 21, 2010

A rematch with the Skyline Track

It's been nearly two years since I shared the story of my solo hiking trip on the Skyline Walkway. I was still fairly new to New Zealand, and still fairly new to hiking to be fair. It was a long, sweaty exhausting day.

I'm proud to say that last week I retraced my steps, in the other direction this time, and it was great! I'm in better shape and my time was much faster. I even giggled a bit as I passed the section in which I got lost the last time.

I still saw some beautiful scenery and friendly farm animals.

For some reason last time I'd chosen the windiest day of the year to go, and when you're walking on the highest ridges that separate the city of Wellington and the South Island (as well as Antarctica), it makes a bit of a difference. This time I enjoyed a surprisingly calm and nicely overcast day.

The view of the South Island (above) wasn't the clearest I'd ever seen from up there, but I think the clouds and weather gave it something of a mystical appearance, like it's not even real.

A bit later I took a shot (above) in the other direction to capture Wellington and the harbour.

The walk took maybe four hours or so. This cow was not the slightest bit concerned when I walked within a few feet of him to pass by on a narrow part of the track.

And my reward at the end of the track was my familiar and beloved lookout platform at the top of Mt. Kaukau. From here it's a downhill walk to the village of Khandallah and a stroll through the neighborhood to our house.


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