Escarpment walk, Pukerua Bay to Paekākāriki EM
25 September 2022
Four intrepid trampers turned up for the escarpment walk on a sunny spring September Sunday. We were lucky to get good weather with no trace of the drizzle from previous days. To keep the southerly breeze at our backs, it was decided to walk from Pukerua to Paekākāriki. A friendly sheep came to the walkway fence at Pukerua to wish our group safe travel. Shaun wanted to accompany us, but we decided he should stay in his paddock, where he was obviously a leader in his field.
After a pleasant stroll by the railway line, we began a gradual ascent. Magnificent views of Pukerua Bay below, with clear water and calm conditions. Continuing on the trail, there was evidence that hard work had been done by the Te Araroa Wellington Trust in clearing slips and making the track safe. We climbed above the main slip, using a handy diversion route. Handy cord slung along the track helped along the steep bits.
It was hot work, but once we got to know the ropes, all went according to plan. Two swing bridges followed, well braced over bush-clad gullies. Climbing the first set of steps, our party took a well-earned breather on a handy seat in the sun. There were only about 1,200 more steps to follow.
Soon the track sidled through cool shady patches of bush. We admired the stunted verdure. More steps followed with panoramic views of a turquoise sea sparkling far below us. It was great to have a relaxed lunch at the top lookout (220 m), sipping a cup of tea, as we gazed at Kapiti.
The hard work of climbing done, we finished with an easy stroll down to Paekākāriki to complete the 9.1 km track. A lone skink was sighted by Leonora at a lizard colony en route. A very enjoyable day out, spectacular views, and excellent company.
- Party members
- Virginia Ashcroft, Alan Benge (leader and scribe), Jane Frances, Leonore Hoke.