Ahipara to Paihia : forest, mud and helicopter

6th of November : Herekino Forest 
After a zero day (a day during which we hike 0 kilometers), we were ready to hike and eager to go. At 6:30, we were leaving the camping, nearly at the same time as the other hikers : Jenny, Kelvin, Inès, Stef, Heiner, Ann and Falkes.
We decided to hitchhike for the first kilometers on the road. That way, we had to walk 5 km less and could hike earlier into Herekino Forest!
So we started hiking up the in the forest, in the mud. It was not really a surprise, we knew that the forest sections that are to follow are very muddy, especially Herekino and Raetea Forest.

By 12, we were already quite far, and had only 7 kilometers remaining before our night break. 
That's when it happened. Marie-Laure slipped in the mud and fell. Not a big deal, if she hadn't twisted her ankle... Kelvin helped us to carry her backpack a little downhill and called the emergency services. They decided to send us an helicopter because they had no 4WD available. 

The helicopter came after an hour or so. They brought her to the hospital while I was hiking backto the road. Stef and Heiner were also very supportive and proposed to come with me. However, it was not on their way and I'm used to walk alone, so I decided to go by myself.

After an hour, I was on the road, hitchhiking in order to join Marie-Laure at the hospital. That's how we met Carl, a great young teacher that walked the Te Araroa last year. He kindly proposed to drive us back from the hospital to Ahipara and made a detour by the supermarket to give me the chance to buy some fresh food for the next days.
We ended up taking the aperitive together at the camping and met other hikers that were there as well.

7th of November - 11th of November
The doctor said that Marie-Laure could resume hiking after 5 days. But he said : "not in the mud". We decided to stay 4 nights at the camping, before going to Haruru Falls and Paihia.
That way, we hope that Marie's ankle will get better soon. We'll start slowly and the path is normally easier after Paihia.
Fingers crossed.
We are now in Haruru Falls, in the house of Kristel, Lee and their children. Tomorrow, we'll make some tourism and on Monday, we'll hit the trail again.


  1. Merci pour ce reportage très éclairant. Les éléments à charge sont versés au dossier, les circonstances sont bien notées et l’enquête suit son cours. Les coordonnées de la victime sont toutefois communiquées dès à présent au responsable du CSPV, la cellule de soutien psychologique aux victimes. BONNE ROUTE !!


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