Really happy I decided to hitch in last night rather than this morning. I was able to get laundry done, hang out with John and Christine, get a shower, and not have to pitch my tent and then tear it down in the morning! I also had plenty of time today to visit the i-Site and line up all of my accommodation and figure out where food was going to come from for the next few days! Yay!
After all of that I remembered I needed to get cash as I seemed to recall that some of the places on the QCT don’t take cards as they have no cell or internet service. The local four square’s ATM was broken so I used the one at the gas station. Except it apparently, despite saying “accepts all cards”, doesn’t work with foreign cards. And those are the only 2 ATMs in town. Hmm. I called my banks and Chase said I could use my credit card to get cash probably but I’d need a PIN and they’d mail it to me, 7-10 days. Not helpful. Schwab didn’t have anything for me other than “have you tried a different ATM”, after I’d already explained the 2 atm thing twice. Oops. So back to the I-site I went to see if they had any ideas. Honestly I was half hoping the lady working there would say “just take my car and pop over to Picton and use one there”. No luck on that part, but she did call the places I had planned to get food and ask if they took cards for me, and they all said yes. Hooray!
So off I went after a quick stop at the four square to pick up some snacks for the trail, dinner and breakfast for Anakiwa, and a replacement for my ill-fated travel power adapter.
There’s a quite lovely trail east of Havelock called the Link trail. It takes you along the road for a bit then sidles along a hillside with amazing views of the Pelorus Sound and Havelock.
The cup by the waterfall was rather cute. I would have sampled some but I’ve been drinking (mostly untreated) river water and rain tank water for the past 2 months so the novelty is lost on me. Takes me back to the similar cup I saw on the Banks Peninsula Track a year ago. Memories…
Anyways, eventually the track ended and brought me back to the road. Not wanting to spend the rest of my afternoon walking along a road I stuck out my thumb and after a short while got a ride from a lovely Aussie couple who took the extra time to divert off of the main road to take me in to Anakiwa, which was super nice of them!
In Anakiwa I came across John and Christine again and we walked the rest of the way into town. They were heading up the trail for some cheap camping and I was staying at the YHA for the night. We stopped at the only shop in town, ate some ice cream and said our see you laters. They’re doing the track a day faster than I am but they’re doubling back to get a ride back into town after they’re finished, so I’ll see them one last time before I head home.
The YHA is suuuuuuper nice. Comfy beds, a nice kitchen, ensuite with soap AND towels, and the place is basically empty. I am supposed to have a roommate but I don’t think they’re showing up. There’s also a tv room complete with surround sound! Books, puzzles, etc. They even have some food for sale, which I was sad to learn about after getting here because I’d brought food, but that’s fine.
Anakiwa is at the inside end of the Queen Charlotte Sound, and it’s just an amazing setting. Lots of boaters come here and lots of folks have baches (vacation homes) here, and I can see why.
After getting settled in I grabbed Mr and Mrs Smith and watched it. I’d seen it before but it’s a fun movie and it caught my eye immediately when looking at the movie list so I went with my gut. Totally worth it.
While getting ready for bed I heard a lot of commotion outside from some birds. I’ve heard there are lots of wekas here. And wekas are little thieves. So despite the smell, my pack and shoes are safely inside my room for the night, lest one of the wekas decides to go shopping. I went outside to see if I could see one but it scampered off into the bushes when the lights came on. Sadly I think I heard one tangling with a cat nearby, though given that wekas are considered a threatened species and cats are an introduced predator, I’m much more sad for the weka than the cat.
Fun fact: when barely heard, a sheep baaing in the distance sounds something like a cat meowing quietly. So I’ll be lulled to sleep tonight by sheep and wekas tonight! Should be fun.
Really looking forward to the next few days. The icing on the cake that has been this walk. The Richmonds were stunning and amazing and awesome and challenging and all of that. The QCT is similarly stunning but way less challenging, and I don’t need to carry very much food!