Auckland Baptist Tramping Club


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This tramp was the fourth of a series of day trips over the past year to cover the Hillary Trail in the Waitakere Ranges. Today’s trip was the section from North Piha to Bethells, and this time cars were left at both ends with drivers swapping keys when the two groups crossed.

Both groups met at the Waiatarua tearooms to sort out the groups and transport before each group went to their respective starting point. The group who started from Bethells set out at 9:15am and crossed the sand dunes to come to the artistic toilet block before Lake Wainamu. The lake itself looked as if it was made of mirror glass.
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There was some confusion about taking a right turn at this point as the leaders had been told. We hunted around for a track going up the hill behind the toilet, whereas in fact the track in question was the one along the edge of Lake Wainamu. Instead of taking this one, which did not look so obvious, we went around the longer route along the lake’s left side, and paused briefly to view a small waterfall at the head of the lake.
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We continued around the lake to the Houghton Track and our first big grunt for the day. At this point we had to spray our boots to help fight kauri dieback. When we almost reached the top of this long climb, we met the other group and swapped keys; it was just after midday.
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The bush track came out at the Wainamu Junction, and we carried on along the Kuataika Track, a wide vehicle track. Some of us scrambled up to the Kuataika Trig for a quick view of the west coast.
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There was a steady descent to our lunch spot at the Kuataika Stream at 1:05pm. We had no formal devotions, but Jonathan gave an impromptu reflection about there being no evidence from fossils that one species evolved from another. John replied that the fossils were the legacy of the flood of Noah, being the remains of animals and plants trapped in the sediments, and there was no death before Adam and Eve ate the apple.
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A further grunt followed before we dropped down much further to cross the Anawhata Stream. Then came the final long uphill and we came out to the open pasture of the Anawhata Farm. Five minutes later we came out to the Anawhata Road, just after 3pm.
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We roadbashed a short distance before coming on to Whites Track. This began as a wide level track with occasional views to the coast before continuing as a downhill bush track with steps. At the bottom we came to a wedding party, and come out to the North Piha carpark at 4pm, bringing to a conclusion a lovely tramp with plenty of uphill workouts.
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DISTANCE: 14.7km
MAXIMUM SPEED: 7.2km
AVERAGE SPEED: 3.5km
FIRST GRUNT: 200m over 1.5km
FIRST DROP: 150m over 1.5km
SECOND GRUNT:  50m over 0.5km
SECOND DROP: 150m over 1km
THIRD GRUNT: 200m over 1.5km

COST: travel from The Bracken $8