I don’t know how to describe these forests best for you, but I think a killing psychopath comes close. They invite you in, welcoming with a gentle path, charming and pleasing you with the sounds of birds and sight of beautiful plants and trees. When entering Raetea, the track was wider and easier to navigate than in Herikino. For a second, Raetea even lured me in thinking that its forest would be enjoyable. Yes, that is how manipulative Raetea is.
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Can we still make New Year’s resolutions? I am sure we can. Maybe even better to do it now, because I bet that by the start of February it’s likely to have experienced failure in some kind of way. It’s tempting to let go of our good intentions after a few mistakes, but instead of abandoning our resolutions, let’s reconsider them.
Happy New Year! Time to reflect on the year that passed.
Sweet. The travels to Norway, Switzerland, New Zealand. Seeing my trailsisters again, wild camping with A. under the stars, drinking coffee together wherever we are.
Bitter. Missing New Zealand. Being harsh on myself on the choices I make. Doubting, ruminating.
Not surprising that both my brother and boyfriend gave me the same book for Christmas: the Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck. I should learn to give less f*cks. Because there is nothing real bitter in my life.
Memories though, can be bittersweet.
Before getting all too sentimental here, let’s go back to the highlights of the year: my best moments, pictures, and hikes.
Why oh why tramping Herikino?
“Doing it all”: I think the feeling of doing an entire thru hike lured me into starting in the North of New Zealand instead of sticking to my original plan of hiking New Zealand’s south island only. Tempted by “not wanting to miss out” on kauri trees, beach walking, Maori culture, Tongariro National Park – where Frodo destroyed the ring – and more, I ignored the amount of road walking and bush tramping, despite knowing that I’m not particularly a forest girl.
There are two types of hikers: beach trampers and forest trampers. Right from the start, the first sections of the Te Araroa – a 3000-kilometres-long trail in New Zealand – will determine in which camp you belong.
Without doubt, I’m a beach tramper (kiwi for “hiker”). This means that I’d rather walk the first 100 kilometres along the beach a second time than ever doing the brutal forests once again. Forest trampers and I totally disagree on this subject as they were totally wrecked by the beach.