|The Dusky Track* in NZ - just a piece of what TMF IV holds in store|
While I had a list of 'unfinished business' from my year and a half stint in paradise four years ago, I decided that in honor of the occasion i should piece together a totally new trip. We would be traveling light - no climbing gear or serious mountain gear - and equipped only with the lightest packrafts, the Alpacka Scouts. Here is what i came up with (click on the map for more detail):
View TMF 4 (NZ) in a larger map
As usual, i'm sure it is overly ambitious. 30+ miles of planned travel each day, with substantial portions of overland (not on trail) trekking, 10 miles of flat water paddling (which will be impossible if the wind is against us), one nearly certain first descent (Freeman Burn) and another Packraft first descent (Grebe River). Whitewater up to class III+ NZ, and lots and lots of EPIC hiking. we'll have to move at a blistering speed to get it done (or even come close) - using huts to rest for brief hours every day - and carrying only what we need to survive. Can't wait. I'm particularly excited about the bright red line portion - a section of the dusky track (that i'm planning to do after a dawn 5-6 hour paddle across lake manapouri) that normally takes fit, experienced parties 4 days. I want to finish the entire section in 12-16 hours. Just to get an idea of what we're up against, here's a link to a trip report and some photos from someone on the trip last year. Sounds grim. Woo hoo!
*Term used loosely