A Road to Nowhere (Part Three). Ahuriri Conservation Area to Christchurch

“On a Mish” #407 A Road to Nowhere (Part Three). Ahuriri Conservation Area. 28.6.2024. My old Marmot tent which I purchased in 2018 now lives in Nepal for my adventures there with the Active Hearts Foundation Team. This meant I needed a new tent and because I loved my Marmot Tungsten so much, the new version was a no-brainer. Apart from the fact that the tent was expertly folded into the bag, pitching the tent was like tying my shoes. I did really enjoy discovering the new clips and zips which have helped upgrade the Tungsten. It was awesome learning in a real-life scenario situation what the heads at Marmot had been up to. The bits I had bent in my old tent had been reinforced and hardened for those who like to push their tents to limits in wild weather like me…

Some of the best missions come from the failure of others. Starting out to find out that the track is closed, or the location doesn’t allow dogs and you can’t leave your four-legged mate behind. My original plan of camping in the Lindis Pass Conservation Area was dashed by a road to nowhere. A closed and locked gate seemed to be an early mish finish, but it looked like my unexpected plan B would save the day / night…

Everything was going perfectly until a farm truck rolled alongside my campsite. It was one of the station managers and I thought I had missed a sign, and my night was over. The lady turned out to be one of the friendliest farmers I had ever met. She loved Georgie and was there to tell me about a Department of Conservation bait (poison) drop which would be happening the next day. After thanking her and letting her give Georgie a last good pat, she was on her way, and I was alone at my home for the night.

For a brief second, I saw a glimpse of the snowy peaks which stand between the Ahuriri River and Snowy Gorge Creek, but for the most of it the mountains remained hidden. With barely a breath of wind in the valley I knew the clouds wouldn’t be going anywhere, so I just enjoyed the fact that it was still and strangely dry. It is a rare treat when your tent stays free of moisture while out in the hills of Aotearoa.

After feeding the dog and then myself, we sat out on the riverbed and took in the serenity of the Ahuriri. Although I had only just grazed the surface, what I had seen impressed me and I knew I would be back for more one day. With the temperature dropping it was time to retreat to the warmth of my new tent and sleeping bag, I was looking forward to a good night’s sleep in the wilderness.

Early-ish the next morning I was up in the dark getting myself sorted for the remaining four hours or so of driving to get to Christchurch. Pack down was easy thanks to my epic new tent and the fact that it was as dry as it was when I got it out of its bag the day before. It would be an understatement to say my first use of my tent was a success. When it looked like the road to nowhere would prematurely end my mish north, thankfully the Ahuriri Valley saved the day / night for both Georgie, myself and my brand-new epic Marmot Tent!

An Old Hut in the Ahuriri Valley

New Zealand. What a place to explore!

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