|PACK GEAR||Rob Deb|
|Sleeping bag||845||845||Can be zipped together into a shared double bag for warmth|
|Silk liner||110||110||Important for sleeping bag hygiene and warmth|
|Sleeping bag dry bag||35||35||Replaces stuff bag and plastic bag. UltraSil|
|Sleeping mat||320||320||Could be replaced with foam mat to reduce weight|
|Plastic bags||20||20||For food, etc|
|Pack||1265||1200||Osprey Exos 58|
|Pack liner dry bag||110||110||UltraSil|
|Lid pocket dry bag||35||35||UltraSil|
|Tent||1170||Tarptent: Cloudburst 2|
|Tea towel||30||2 thick Chux cloths|
|Gas cylinder||370||370||We get up to 40 boils from each. Weight empty = 130gm|
|Wind shield||25||Aluminium foil|
|Emergency/first aid kit||165||210|
|Matches, candle||15||For emergency firelighting|
|Spoons x2||20||Plastic: (plastic "Sporks" both broke)|
|Leatherman mini||55||Incl pliers, blade, screwdrivers, tin opener|
|Clothes dry bag||40||40||UltraSil|
|Parka||695||660||Oringi Milford (un-needed
material cut off; heavy but effective
for NZ conditions)
|Fleece long-sleeved top||280||275|
|T shirt||150||110||Merino - Mainly In bed (unless cold when used as extra layer)|
|Silk vest||90||In bed|
|Spare walking socks||50||40|
|Underpants||50||30||One spare each|
|Hut shoes||480||445||Rob- Crocs; Debby- sandals|
|Torch||135||Debby uses solar cap with LED light|
|Cord and clothes pegs||30|
|Batteries (AA x 4)||95|
|Notebook & pen||75|
|Bank security key||15|
|Spectacles||85||(incl case 45g) Prescription lenses -double as sunglases|
|Toothbrush, soap etc||70||85|
|Water bottles||95||95||2 each; one empty unless needed|
|Leki pole||315||250||Not needed in North Island; essential South Island|
|Food Rob||4600||3000||For about 6 days|
|Shoes - Salomans||730||540||Techamphibians, light and dry out quickly.|
|Zip-offs pants||275||255||Used as shorts unless in town|
|Solar cap||135||"2C Solar Light CapSun" sun hat with solar panel and 2 LEDs|
|Bandana||30||For round neck or as neck shade tucked under hat.|
Sunday, June 24, 2012
Here is what we took with us and what we wore and the weight in grams.
A book has recently been published called "A walking guide to New Zealand's long trail Te Araroa" by Geoff Chapple. If you can get hold of a copy you would find it useful for background reading - it's a bit heavy for actually carrying on the trail though. It has plenty of detail on most of the tracks, photos, maps etc. I compiled notes from the Te Araroa website, but there is work being done now on trail guides which will contain all the information you need.
Our philosophy is to travel as lightweight as possible without compromising safety. In NZ weather is always unpredictable and you must be prepared for cold and wet conditions, as well as very hot and dry.
We have a very lightweight tarptent, lightweight packs and sleeping bags, and carry minimal clothing - but excellent waterproof jackets and fleece gear including balaclavas and gloves. We also carry cellphone, gps and personal locator beacon, compass, maps and first aid kit including gel blister plasters. We carry a tiny little fold-up burner and use gas canisters and yes, you will need to have some means of cooking as there are often no facilities whatsoever along the way. DOC huts mostly do not supply gas, some have wood-burners. (See our detailed gear list).
In most places you can find somewhere to put up a tent, but always ask if it is on private property. Bear in mind your safety too - we don't have harmful creatures but we do have some unsavoury characters out there.
We dehydrate most of our meals and send food parcels to various points along the way – many youth hostels and motor camps are happy to hold parcels. Other trail users have managed without using food parcels and found it reasonably easy to resupply along the way. Usually, you need to carry 5-7 days of food with 1 section in the South Island where you need to carry 9 days (The Richmond Alpine Route). The trail tends to go to a resupply point every 5 days or so - some of these are small towns with a lack of variety!
Our advice is to do some long distance walks to get in training - about 20-25km. This is just to get your feet used to doing long distances day after day - they really suffer. We wear lightweight running shoes but that is a personal choice - some tracks are very rough and many are muddy, but on the roads heavy boots are a killer.
I am 59 and Rob is 69. We have both done a reasonable amount of tramping here and overseas; Rob has tramped quite extensively in New Zealand. We found the trail challenging in parts, especially sections of the South Island. There are some huge climbs and descents, some quite demanding tracks, and many river crossings.
Many other people will be happy to give you help/advice - the Te Araroa website is wonderful, there is a Te Araroa Facebook group and a Te Araroa Google group which are both useful ways to get in touch, as well as many trail stories and blogs.
We hope this is a little help with your planning – walking the Te Araroa Trail is a totally amazing and rewarding experience - best of luck!!