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Tuesday, February 2, 2016

A Mountain Retreat

Green Lake Hut

Brandon and I have done our fair share of hiking- multi-day backpacking trips where we carry all supplies necessary to get us through the trek. We discovered that skimping on food when in the backcountry is the worst thing we could do. We've also learned that while beer is heavy, it is the perfect reward to a long day. I've always loved sleeping in a tent, and having the freedom to go where ever we want, that feeling of accomplishment at the end of the day, after we struggled through the cold or wet, or high elevation... and then we learned how the Kiwis do backcountry.

 N Zed is known for its rugged mountains, its adrenalin filled sports, and its hiking trails, or tramps as they are called here. The country attracts people from all over the world looking to indulge themselves in a few great walks, some stunning scenery, and a track or two of intense mountain biking. Because of this and because the Kiwis are so proud of their land they have developed and maintained the best trail system I have ever seen.

School House Hut 

Liverpool Hut

Trails are set up in a way so that one can hike from cabin to cabin throughout the backcountry for days on end and always have shelter to stay in for the night. Many equipped with a small wood burning stove that doubles as a way to cook. They all contain bunks with plastic (yet comfortable) mattresses, an outside bivy, and some sort of water source, weather it is rain water caught off the roof, or a river near. (The rivers here in New Zealand are the clearest I've ever seen. Water doesn't have to be sanitized, and it is so plentiful, one liter is all we ever carry at a time. When it's gone we fill it from a nearby falls and continue on our way.)

So far we've been lucky enough to have most of these mountain retreats to ourselves. Here's a peak into our "Hut Life"

Mt Brown Hut