Planning

Over the course of next couple of weeks I will be compiling information concerning the Te Araroa track. This will include relevant sites (Official sites, blogs), trail notes, maps, tips and more! This page will also serve as an aid for any future participants wanting to undertake Te Araroa.

My main resources for planning on the web are:
http://www.teararoa.org.nz
http://teararoatrail.freeforums.org
https://www.facebook.com/groups/26638669574/
http://trampingnewzealand.blogspot.co.nz/
And George’s blog is amazing but does require translation.

I take the opinions of other peoples blogs serious and regard them as invaluable. There are four elements of planning that I believe are essential:

  • Information
  • Navigation
  • Resupply
  • Special considerations

Information

Thanks to previous adventurers and helpful people from the Te Araroa Facebook page, I have found trail notes from three different sources. I will be accessing these via a kindle and therefore reducing the amount of paperweight required.

Official Te Araroa trail notes can be found here.
Joe Delinos 22 page long summary can be found here.
Eefs and PJ’s condensed notes of the TA guidebook can be found here.

Navigation

Maps will be provided from either two or three mediums. The Te Araroa wiki lists a number of useful apps to avoid paper loads. I will be carrying a Iphone with a life proof case that will have several applications that I can utilize. These will include:

  • iHike GPS NZ (Apple)
  • Tide Time NZ
  • Campermate
  • Google Maps

However, I’m constantly considering that I use a gps to navigate (most likely garmin) and utilizing a program called basecamp. I may also incorporate open source maps for the background and download the GPX file that essentially overlays the images.

I will also fashion a small booklet containing 132 images (67 pages) at 1:50,000 TOPO supplied by Benjamin Ibler in JPG form for the 2015 season. These maps can be found here.I may opt to separate the booklet and leave them at pick-up points as I head southbound.

Thanks to Tony Hadfield via the Te Araroa Facebook Group, a set of North Island plans with annotations has been provided which I will be using that can be downloaded via dropbox here.

Resupply

To get an idea of how much I will need to carry and where the most critical points are, we found this overview made by through-tramper Charlie Barran extremely useful:
NISIHowever, considering this was made in 2012 I will be going through and evaluating each section of the hike to ensure that the current values are still approximate.

resupply-placesAdditionally, the Te Araroa Wiki provides resupply information here.

The NZ Post has a bounce box system known as Poste Restante, where post offices can hold packages for up to three months. Unfortunately, none of the Poste Restante locations are on the first half of the south island where resupplying will be at its most difficult so the system cannot be used to send food.

George has set up a useful map and list with Post Restante points on trail:

poste-restante

POSTSHOP ADDRESS POSTCODE PHONE FAX
Auckland Ground Floor,
Bledisloe Bldg,
24 Wellesley Street
1010 09 379 6714 09 377 4622
Hamilton 563 Angelsea Street 3204 07 838 2708 07 838 1842
Invercargill 51 Don Street 9810 03 214 7702 03 214 4140
Kaitaia 104 Commerce Street 0410 09 408 6159 09 408 3101
Kerikeri 6 Hobson Avenue 0230 09 407 9721 09 407 9722
Levin 228 Oxford Street 5510 06 367 8159 06 368 9405
Paihia 2 Williams Road 0200 09 402 8623 09 402 7803
Palmerston North 328 Church Street 4410 06 353 6195 06 355 4167
Picton 72 High Street 7220 03 520 3021 03 573 6137
Queenstown 13 Camp Street 9300 03 442 4972 03 442 7976
Taumaruui 47 – 49 Miriama Street 3920 07 895 8146 07 895 8147
Whanganui 115 Victoria Aveue 4500 06 345 0348 06 347 8009
Wellington 2 Manners Street 6011 04 801 2422 04 801 2428

For resupplying on the most remote and mountaneous stretches, I will be using a Food Drop. A Food Drop can be sent to several lodges and hostels along the track. It is good to contact the place you want to send it to in advance so they expect it in the mail. When sending food drops, write your name and expected arrival date on an obvious place on the box.

  • Havelock: There is a Four Square in Havelock, but due to the long supply time on the Pelorus River and Richmond Alpine Tracks (9+ days) it can be useful to send lightweight hiking food and more varied food. The supermarket in havelock is small. Blue Moon Lodge accepts packages for people staying there.

<your name>
c/o Bluemoon Lodge
48 Main Rd Havelock
Blenheim, 7100

  • St Arnaud:  is very remote, and catching a ride back after resupplying in Nelson or Blenheim is very difficult. Travers Sabine Lodge accepts  packages from people planning to stay there

<your name>
c/o Travers-Sabine Lodge
P.O. Box 15
St. Arnaud, 7053

The Alpine Lodge also accepts packages for guests. Contact them directly for the address.

  • Boyle Village:  The “village” is not much more than a wide spot in the road. Many people choose to hitchhike to Hanmer Springs, and resupply there.

The Boyle River Outdoor Education Center is located directly on the trail, and will accept packages for guests.

  • Arthur’s Pass: more active tourist town, so hitching to/from AP is somewhat easier than, say, St. Arnaud. The Mountain House accepts packages for guests, or non-guests for 5$:

<your name>
c/o The Mountain House
P.O. Box 12
Arthur’s Pass, 7654

  • Lake Coleridge: resupplying in Lake Coleridge is not possible. The alternative to a food box here is to hitch out to Methven. Lake Coleridge is just north of the Raikaia River Hazard Zone. Most people attempt to hitch around the river, and choose to make their way to Methven to resupply in person. The Lake Coleridge Lodge accepts packages for guests. Note that this is an expensive option – accommodation at the Lodge starts at $65/night for a tent site, and there is a “rural delivery” surcharge on the postage.

<your name>
c/o Lake Coleridge Lodge
114 Hummocks Road
CMB 18, Lake Coleridge Village
RD2 Darfield
Canterbury 7572

Special considerations

Payments before time

DoC Hut pass (6 months)
Inter islander Ferry
Queen Charlotte Permit
Whanganui River Canoe

YHA Low Carbon Traveller

YHAs offer a “Low Carbon Traveller” rebate of an additional 25%. You can only get it when you are travelling on foot or by bike. This makes it by far the cheapest option of staying in hostels. The link to their awesome promotion can be found here.

These are the ones en route:

  • North Island
    • Ahipara
    • Auckland
    • Ohakune
    • Wellington
  • South Island
    • Arthur’s Pass
    • Lake Tekapo <- Camp with your tent in the garden to save extra extra $$$
    • Queenstown
    • Te Anau
    • Wanaka

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