A magnificent 10km walk/run
Story by Roger Childs photos by Jack McAllister and Andrew Li
For over a year, the Kapiti Joggers and Walkers have been keen to do the Pukerua Bay to Paekakariki section of the iconic Te Araroa Walkway .
So Sunday 23 April was chosen as the day, and conditions could not have been better: fine weather, light breezes and mild temperatures.
But how would the timing work out? The decision was made to send the walkers off an hour ahead of the runners.
All 18 participants took the train from Paekakariki to Pukerua Bay, and the walkers started on the southern end of the trail at 7.30am.
Wonderful exercise with awesome views
It’s a 10km trek with two swing bridges, at least 30 flights of steps, small sections of bush, and winding, narrow tracks overlooking the Tasman Sea.
Because we had started early, there were only a few other folk on the track and it wasn’t until about the third kilometre that we actually met people coming the other way.
However, towards the Paekakariki end, from about 9.15am on, a lot more folks were venturing south.
The experience was magical as the weather was ideal and the vistas inspiring and very photogenic.
The walkers arrived in the village at 10.00 and the runners about 5 minutes later.
Time on the trek, given that there were regroups, photo opportunities and greetings to fellow travellers:
~ walkers: 2 hours 30 minutes
~ runners: 1 hour 35 minutes
It was a great experience and to celebrate, the group headed to Finns for coffee and scones.
Not for the faint hearted
Pukerua Bay to Paekakariki must be one of the most picturesque and most challenging sections of Te Araroa.
If you don’t like big climbs and steep drops, don’t attempt it. However, you can do about 3km out and back at each end, without
striking narrow paths, swing bridges and sets of steps.
You need a good standard of fitness and should take water, snacks and another layer of clothing to put on if necessary.
If you haven’t done it, and meet the criteria above, it’s not to be missed!