A fairly easy weekend out – tramp around to Tawhitokino Reginal Park and camp – try out the new hammock.
Tawhitokino is a nice balance of being far enough away that you don’t get car campers, but close enough that you don’t have to carry a pack 4 hours up hills to get there.
A little bit of poor planning meant we got there right on high tide, which means the track was impassable without going for a swim, however, we really weren’t in a hurry on the day, so it simply meant a couple of hours on the beach reading the latest issue of Wilderness Magazine and National Geographic. Soon enough, the tide came down enough for us to pick up the packs and head out.
The short hill climb soon opened out onto the beach, and we had a relaxing stroll down to the campsite.
We spent the rest of the day having cups of tea and supper. Slept well to the sounds of the waves.
Woke up to a beautiful morning, got up and was putting the kettle on to boil some water for coffee, when I was surprised to see a naked man running past me down the beach. He was obviously out for his morning constitutional, and continued all the way down to the end of the beach. Chuckling to myself I carried on brewing coffee, only to be further surprised when another gentleman, in a similar state of undress, also ran past in the same direction.
After a little research, it turns out that Tawhitokino is considered one of the nicer beaches for strolling down by the local nudist community. Maybe DOC would like to point out, that despite what reviews say, it isn’t actually a free camping ground.
After our breakfast, we decided to head out before high tide, and headed back with our packs on our backs, with considerably heavier loads than the guys behind us!
Grade: Easy. Small hill to climb, then mostly beach walking. Inaccessible at high tide.