Auckland Baptist Tramping Club

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Six ABTC members  set off from the car park at the end of Franklin Road to follow the Waitawheta River towards the Waitawheta Hut. For some this was a training/preparation tramp for the upcoming Summer Tramps while for others it was a fitness boost or their first experience overnight in a hut. As we rotated leading the group, followed the map of the track and recorded the track on the ViewRanger app we were able to check each track junction and have regular breaks.

Our lunch stop beside the river was particularly pleasant and Murray shared about the "awe and wonder" we see while tramping - including the native orchids Alasdair had marked for us on the track and the brilliant white of the clematis in flower. Our view of the world around us was compared to the trees on the riverbank described in Psalm 1.

On arriving at the hut at 2pm - 10 km successfully completed in four hours we were warmly greeted by Alasdair Nicoll (our Hut Warden, club member and orchid spotter). Once unpacked we used the opportunity to practise lighting the MSR and Coleman stoves for a welcome cup of tea. We then set about some outdoor training using the emergency fly and pitching the Zeus tent (for Murray to sleep in). Further time before dinner was spent discussing the equipment order form and the safety plan required for the tramp preparation and documentation. With the menu explained fully, the meal was soon prepared and we ate well before the sunset on the last night before daylight saving started. The glow worms down the track behind the hut were impressive once we turned off our head torches and our eyes adjusted to the dark. Everyone slept well.


We ate our porridge, tidied and left the hut by 8.30am on Sunday morning and made good time completing the return tramp in just over three hours. We were pleased the weather stayed fine and appreciated the memories we took home - especially after considering that if the bush can inspire us so can God the creator who promises to do something good for us (John 10:10).

The drive home included a well-deserved coffee stop at Paeroa everyone made a great contribution to our weekend tramp and we all achieved our training goal to be better prepared for our next tramp - well done!!
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