Aotearoa is the Māori name for NZ and means "the long white cloud". I think Tararua is Maori for shitty weather. Nuff said bout that, mud diving in the Tararuas occurred between Jan 25th and feb 2nd.
So after chilling in Palmy for a couple of days we decided to get back on the TA and walk out of the city. It ended up being a day and a half on the road again. We walked into the rain and the mist. We didn't leave the rain and the mist until we emerged west of the Tararuas into Waikanae. The original plan was to do all the main range, while TA only goes through a little bit of the above tree line part. But weather once again forced us down..
Mud and mist all the time is not my favorite. I can handle boulder hopping, sand, skree and and rivers/streams. But mud just sucks all life lust out of you. Even the tracks around the mud pools were muddy. And all along the smell of a forest in decay filled the nostrils.
I did not enjoy the Tararuas as I did with the previous mountain ranges. The weather and the mud was the main reason for that. I guess the hiking is beautiful when the mountains aren't covered in clouds and my description of these mountain are colored as the clouds, grey..
Tararuas were so misty that my beard got soaked by the mist. No rain that day. Guess it wasn't really needed..