Crikey, no post since 23 Dec, I have gotten slack.
As you can imagine, it has been a busy 8 weeks since last post. I am still really enjoying the job, though some days I could happily walk away.
It is can be, but not always, be very physically and mentally demanding. The track is around 54 kms, and that is over 3 days, which depending on a lot of factors can make for a pleasant, or miserable trip.
For each trip, there are three main factors that impact on how well things will go, these are the weather, the walkers, and your guiding group. Yes, your guiding group, they are all very good, and very capable, but we are only people, and some people work better together than others, so who you work with is a big factor. But generally I have been lucky in who I have guided with.
Weather is self explanatory, the walker groups vary each time, on a whole they are usually good. But you can get some very slow walkers at time, I had two late finishes in a row on my last trip, 7.05pm into Quinton which is usually 4ish for the guide role I was in, and next day 8:50 pm into sand fly point that can be anything from 2:50 till 5pm as a rule for last guide, so 8:50 is very slow.
Unfortunately people over estimate their abilities, and under estimate the track. For a fit, experienced tramper/hiker used to normal back country tracks of New Zealand, its a doddle, a very beautiful, wonderful, must do walk. But for walkers not in aforementioned group, it can be a foreboding, rock strewn, very steep, very long 3 days. Don’t let me put you off, if you are moderately fit, and done some long day, or over night hikes in the past, you should be fine. But if you are not overly fit, a lot over weight, have a medical condition or two and not done a lot of walking before, you should remedy a couple of these first. Two days in is a bad time to discover that you are not really up to it.
Heck, when I first did it, I was in the severely obese weight category, not very fit, and loved it. But it was a very tiring 3 days hiking. But, then I had had a lot of tramping experience before I went on to the track.
OK, enough ranting. I am still on track, and generally loving it. I am fitter than I have been since I was 19, my weight is now where is was about 15-18 years ago, and I am learning so many new skills, and meeting so many cool people.
I am currently hanging out in the guide house, sitting here typing listening to various conversations, there was 11 of us in the house last night, though I suspect one stayed away, four went out on track this morn, and so six of us in today, because we all love similar things, we generally get along. I do miss having other Sci Fi fans around, others who will get excited a new episode of “The Orville”, “Dr who” or “Star Trek Discovery” is out, or discuss the finer points of a Peter F Hamilton novel. But you can’t have it all.
Oh well, life’s good. May do some photos today if I can be bothered.