Saturday, 5th Feb
Mosquitoes and popping noises again
I awoke a lot last night, due mostly I think, to the
tossing and turning of many of the other sleepers. Also the whine of a
mosquito didn't help. Raymond said he thought only male mosquitoes whined,
and that they didnít bite, only the females. I wanted to believe this, but
Iím not sure that itís true. Iíve never heard it before. I must find out for
(Raymond later emailed me with this note: "Regarding
mosquito humming, I was wrong. I can't find any mention of there being a
difference between males and females. In fact the male uses the female's
whine to locate her.")
This hut also made loud popping noises during the night.
It must be something to do with the wood contracting when cooling, or
perhaps expanding due to moisture build up in the air from the sleepers and
damp night air.
Wayne 'the All Black'
Wayne, the big Kiwi farmer is next to me in his All
Black jersey as we both clean our teeth outside in the morning sunshine at
the tub. He tells me he had a difficult time sleeping in the rather small
bunk last night. He does not look the best this morning.
I suggest to Wayne that he might find his All Black
jersey a bit hot in the sun. But he quickly defends it saying that he wears
it everywhere. He seems very proud of it. Possibly he has been an all Black.
He does look vaguely familiar, and has the build.
He later announces he is going to leave on the walk
early, before the two girls, to "get his second wind" on the track as he
puts it. He is so large, I suspect that he may fear the girls will show him
up on the mountain climbs. They look quite fit with their slim figures. He
shortly afterward strides off alone with a small pack on his back.
We set off on the last leg
Before Raymond and I leave, we meet a nice mature couple
from Katikati who plan to do the Tongariro crossing walk today.
Eva and her girl friend depart with big smiles.
Not long afterward, Raymond and I shoulder our packs and
start on our three-hour walk back to Whakapapa village.
It is warm and sunny, and no win, the mountains appeared to be blocking it.
This track is narrow and in poor condition. It does not
seem to be used much. In fact we do not see anybody else on it at all.
Many dry river beds and narrow track
We cross many dry stony river beds with large rounded
rocks. Some of them are unusual shapes. We see one that looks like a pig,
and just in front of it, one that looks like a dog.
Pig rock (middle) and dog rock
We have to climb down into these river beds and back up
out of them again. Many of the river beds have steep banks.