Brrrrrr another chilly one first thing! That’d wake you up. We had a choice to make today. And it was to follow the old Te Araroa route down the middle of the river, or, to nail it up the hill to Stody’s Hut and over Breast Hill ( er, Mountain! ) through a new section of trail just opened. The trail notes didn’t seem to match Cookie’s route, or the official route, and we couldn’t find any sign of the huts on the Topo map… With rain imminent and a ‘difficult decent’ supposedly to come, we thought sliding on wet scree down a mountain face might be less preferable to wading down an icy river ;) Probably. And anyway, the river looked a faster route to motels and beer. “Let’s swim for it then”, “Ok”.
Yeah the weather looked to be turning, this was later confirmed by three hunters that said heavy snow was due tonight down to 800m! Our food rations were looking lean and the I was generally a bit confused about where this new section of trail actually went. Plus following the river out looked likely to be a much quicker way of getting a beer in hand, so it was an easy decision to make – Down the Timaru we go!