Two Dogs, a Lake, And Te Whanau (Part Two) – South Mavora Lake Track

“On a Mish” #401 Two Dogs, a Lake, And Te Whanau (Part Two). South Mavora Lake Track. Mavora Lakes / Southland. 17.4.2024. I had my whanau by my side when I went on my injury journey, and I needed their company when the road to recovery got challenging. After moving back down to Te Anau from Christchurch to put the pieces of my life back together, I was blessed with a visit from the fam. Because they had put in the effort to firstly help me repair myself, and secondly drive the 640km to Te Anau, they needed an adventure. And it was the Mavora Lakes that would be providing that…

With all of the adventures I have been on you would think that I didn’t like people. I do love the freedom of a solo mission, as with no one around you can move at your own pace and also get the buzz of having a mountain or valley to yourself (something still available in Aotearoa). But with that said, having someone else with you to share in the enjoyment is just as enjoyable.

Te Anau didn’t exactly invite my family in with welcoming weather. Cold April rain came with a dusting of snow on the Fiordland tops visible from the little town on the lake. It was a sign that winter was just around the corner. After reacquainting with everyone we introduced the two dogs to each other and the battle began. While we caught up, the dogs rolled around all over the show like a mini tornado. I was pleased to see Georgie was happy with other doggies!

The day of our mish was a real mixed bag. The forecast for when we were hiking was supposed to be a bit rainy, but with a good attitude you can enjoy the hike no matter what’s going on above you. But to our surprise the skies above South Mavora Lake were a mixture of cloud and sunshine, and it seemed like we might stay dry. Dogs out, doors locked, time to go on a mish!

Looking back (over South Mavora Lake) to where we started from

The track around the lake is very well formed and not far from the start is an excellent swing-bridge. After the bridge is an undulating track which leads to the camping area at the top of the lake. I knew that was too far for me, so we aimed for a beach about two thirds of the way around the lake. The beach was also at an angle that would block the cool wind that was keeping the temperatures down.

I loved hiking on a proper trail with Georgie for the first time. It was an insight into the future, and I am looking forward to more missions with my awesome doggie. It was thanks to that doggie that I got to the beach. We enjoyed a coffee and much needed break before taking on the track in reverse. By the time we got back to the swing-bridge I was really feeling my hip and if my whanau wasn’t with me, I’d think about having a grizzle about it. Company can really bring your mood up when pain is trying to keep you down.

After the hike we headed back to Te Anau and in the blink of an eye we were having our final dinner at the Fat Duck (a restaurant in Te Anau), and then it was time to say goodbye. I was sad to see everyone leave, and poor Georgie was gutted that her new best friend was no longer around to playfight with. All good things must come to an end so we can begin to appreciate how awesome the experience was. I can positively say that when you combine two dogs, a lake, and my whanau you get the ingredients to put a smile on my face, even if my hip and back are trying to ruin the party!

New Zealand. What a place to explore!

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