Date: 18 November 2018
Wet and windy.
At the start in Ashhurst Domain.
The traffic management vehicle, the last participant, and the water point guys leaving before we got there.
A jolly welcome back at the finish.
We arrived exhausted from gardening work the previous day at the club-rooms to take the bus to the start in Ashhurst. It was again as in previous years overcast and cool, necessitating carrying a lot of additional clothes. The thing with being tail-end is, you can go at slow walking pace, which means you don’t ever warm up. Apart from rain-jackets and an extra polyprop (which I donned even before the start), we also had to carry the first aid kit, as well as water and some snacks for ourselves. Just as well, as the third water point was packed up and gone by the time we passed through. And not only was the water point gone, so was the only toilet on the Bridle Track/walkway! I realise volunteers don’t want to wait all day for the last participant, but to pack up the aid on course before the last participants come through is just unacceptable. Unless, of course, there’s a cut-off point on course and the participant missed that. Continue reading
Starting fresh, clean and without any aches or pains.
Putangirua Pinnacles campsite.
The route follows the riverbed for the first half kilometre or so.
Easy going on a well formed trail in the first couple kilometres.
Even steps to make it more accessible to do the Pinnacles scenic loop walk.
A split in the road to complete the Pinnacles walk, go to Te Toki accommodation or further into the mountain to Washpool Hut.
An easy uphill section on a 4WD road.
Very steep, but easy going.
Through the manuka trees onto a grassy patch.
Some NZ wildlife.
If this is not a magic mushroom, I don’t know what is!
Further and further up the mountain.
Follow the orange triangles – up and up.
If I had to guess, I would say that the Libertia (NZ iris) grows at about 300 metres above sea level. At least in this area, we saw them on both sides of the mountain at about this altitude.
In a distance: the sea to the left and Lake Ferry to the right. We followed the ridge in the foreground.
Another weird looking fungi.
Arriving at the hut that was “born” the same year as Gerry!
Our marshalling spot, geared with gels, tent, stove and camera.
Magical misty mountain.
Variety of ferns in the area.
The hut is way down below in this valley.
The trunk and roots of a Matai tree.
At first I thought a hunter had slaughtered his deer on the track!
Between the beech trees.
Fetching water from the stream about 60 metres from the hut.
A steep little climb between the stream and the hut.
We had a cozy evening by fire and candle light.
A very small little hut that only sleeps six.
The hut is nestled in a tiny clearing in the forest.
There’s quite a bit of stinging nettle in this area.
Evidence that this hut is frequented mostly by hunters.
The hill is often at this gradient, necessitating an all-fours approach.
Back among the native NZ iris.
The flowers of a rewarewa (NZ honeysuckle)
Lunch in a grassy clearing.
Back on the 4WD track and at the turn-off to the PInnacles viewpoint.
Pinnacles up closer.
Fallen trees (manuka) make for a 15kg squat and deadlift, all in one!
On the edge of an abyss.
Back in the river bed.
A few minor stream crossings.
Pinnacles up close.
Another year of not doing this event, but this time we opted to marshal. I’ve always been partial to multi-day runs, which is maybe why I also love tramping so much. So while we were in no state to participate, we thought it would be nice to experience a wee bit of the event at some level. Event organiser Chris Martin (aka Martini) agreed to have us, and placed us at the peak of the fourth “undulation”about 2-3km above Washpool Hut in the Aorangi Ranges. The Aorangi Undulator comprises of a 100km event (the A100), run over the three days, and a one day event of about 32km, which is also the middle day of the A100 – the day we marshalled. Continue reading
For almost two years now (since I’ve been diagnosed with FAI) I’ve been working on my mobility by spending a fair amount of time on a foam roller, a ball, or anything else that helps break up the fascia adhesions and tightness that hinders mobility. I’ve discovered that releasing the “knots” in the quad of the FAI hip brings instant relief for any discomfort or pain, and therefore started to focus 99% of my energy on that area. During this time I’ve also taken up some body-weight strength training in the form of lunges, squats, hip thrusts, deadlifts etc. I was unfortunately not very religious about it and my routine was rather haphazard. Things were going okay until last summer, but as with most things in life, when things get tough or life gets busy, looking after oneself goes out the door. Admittedly, I’ve been rather lax the past few months about my hip. I didn’t have much pain, and when I did experience some discomfort, breaking up the adhesions in my quad did the trick. This happened a few times a week, and apart from that I didn’t bother to keep up my maintenance and conditioning in any of the other areas of my body, let alone balancing out left and right. This has turned out to be a big mistake. Continue reading