Happy Daze

24 March 

The plan had been to walk through to Happy Daze Hut from Paget Road and onwards to either Makaretu or Awatere Hut depending on how the day went, however as there currently isn’t formal access to Happy Daze from Paget road and we were unable to get permission to cross farm land we changed to Plan B.  Instead 9 of us set off to Moorcock Saddle on Kashmir Road, parking the van and heading down to Awatere Hut with the goal of seeing how far along the Makaretu River we would be able to go. 

Weather was good as we set off along the track to Awatere Hut with clear views up towards Longview Hut and the surrounding areas. Upon reaching the Makaretu river, it was covered in large shallow banks of rocks and gravel making it easy to traverse, and with the river level low you could avoid getting your feet wet. At Awatere Hut, which has been done up with a new woodshed, hut roof and coat of paint, we split into two groups due to time constraints, the first with the goal of trying to reach Happy Daze Hut, and second taking a more relaxed pace and seeing how far they would get before having to turn around.

Heading downstream was fairly straightforward with no major obstacles blocking the path along the river, the few fallen trees we encountered easy to avoid. The faster group reached the forks leading up to Makaretu Hut about 10 minutes before we were meant to turn around but given Happy Daze was only 15 minutes away we decided to push on to the Hut climbing out of the river and followed a slightly overgrown track to Happy Daze Hut. It took just over 2 hours to reach Happy Daze from Awatere Hut along the river. 

We returned back the way we came with the return journey taking about the same time, arriving back at the van as we had agreed so we could begin the drive back to Hastings. 

Party: Gabrielle S, Jude H, Denise D, Paula K, Judith M, Nic W, Janice L, Murry A and Robyn W.

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