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Published: March 14th 2023
We found him!
We were soooo excited as we left for Nelson on a little plane with propellors. And there he was! Jumping up and down. We saw him straight away as we got off the plane. It was marvellous to see him and there were tears all round of course. He's being very stoic about the cuddles that are being demanded of him....
We were whisked straight down to the beach for the office social go-carting session to meet some of his colleagues and to see Jamie placed midfield with lots of smiles. We're staying in the Palace Backpackers with a bohemian vibe, high ceilinged splendour but a bit fusty. Free breakfast and good showers so not a lot to complain about.
"Great News, Mum and Dad" said Jamie a few minutes after our arrival. "We've got a cancellation at Angelo's". "Super", we replied, "what type of food do they serve there?". "No no, Mum and Dad, not Angelo's the restaurant but Angelus the wilderness hut in Nelson Lakes National Park".
Spent the next day preparing rations and ourselves for the three day return walk up to Angelus Hut in Nelson Lakes. Dinner together
with Ellie at the Boat Club....Ellie is going to meet us at Angelus as she has to work on Friday and is going to do a 2 day walk in 20 minutes. Awesome gal.....
We set off to Speargrass Hut with Jamie. Our first NZ hut. What a great concept; cheap, functional, comfortable shelters in the outback. Serviced with wood and water. All 12 guests lying like peas in a pod, 6 on the bottom rack, 6 on the top. First ones there get the bottom rack. A bit of a clamber (Pete's words) up a rocky river valley, views getting wider as we rose. Next day we continued the ascent to Angelus hut where we arrived mid afternoon. Ellie joined us soon afterwards having taken the direct route from the bottom at breakneck pace. A beautiful hut, high in the mountain by a lake, surrounded by distant mountains all around. A special place. Spent some time in the evening being introduced to Ellie's lightweight trampers games compendium.
Next day bought torrential rain and horizontal rock climbing before a 6 hour long ridge walk back to the car park. Final zig zag agony on knees for an hour
but we were cheered by a cosy afternoon coffee at the Alpine lodge. Recharged in the evening with an Indian takeaway before getting ready for bus at 0840 Monday morning to start the Queen Charlotte Track, a 4 day tramp in the Marlborough Sound (without huts but with Notso Tiny Tim).
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