Hiking lake Waikaremoana- NZ Great Walk

I think I may have discovered the best pre-Christmas therapy ever… multi-day hiking in the back & beyond!!! In late November I hiked around Lake Waikaremoana with my three good friends. The weather gods smiled down on us and although we felt like we experienced all four seasons over the course of our four day hike, we only had a little rain overnight and morning mist, that soon cleared and sunshine ( well mostly). Waikaremoana is home to the Tūhoe people aka the children of the mist or “Misty’s” (as the hut warden Bill told us😂) Waikaremoana means ‘sea of rippling waters’.

Morning mist clearing to reveal the lake from Panekire hut.

We stayed in three huts, they were Panekire (1st night), Waiopaoa (2nd night) and Marauiti (3rd night). We carried all of our food, cooking equipment, clothing and sleeping bags in our packs (total weight including pack ~13kg). The huts are standard back country huts which have running water (we treated ours with a UV light to be on the safe side) tables and benches, fireplaces (no dry wood provided at the time we were there though) & bunk beds with mattresses in the dorm rooms. BYO toilet paper😉

Panekire hut
Having lunch at Waiopaoa hut after a swim.
We enjoyed meeting Tūhoe hut warden “Bates” here at the smaller Marauiti Hut #downtonabbey

Highlights include: (everything 😅) but if I had to break it down I’d say the views while walking up & along the tops of the Panekire bluffs , hilarious times with my mates in the bush, swimming in the lake (freezing and incredible), hanging out on the lawn of Waiopaoa hut in the sunshine reading, chatting & drinking cups of tea, chatting with the friendly & knowledgeable Tūhoe hut wardens, eating A-LOT of scroggin, the Korokoro waterfall walk (1hr return detour walk) ,staying in the huts and the mixture of people you meet, the lake & the mist, no cell phone reception, the easiness of our dinners= dehydrated meals (way tastier than I remember), the night walk and bird life, plus no one getting blisters and the water taxi boat ride back to our car in Onepoto!

I am feeling topped up and ready now for the Christmas onslaught! Bring it on, ho ho ho🎅🌲

Check out the track info here xxx

Read the Department of Conservation track info https://www.doc.govt.nz/globalassets/documents/parks-and-recreation/tracks-and-walks/east-coast-hawkes-bay/lake-waikaremoana-track.pdf

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