The day started with a lovely walk along the coastline along a grassy track. Some more steep ups and downs but the views were revitalising. Back to road walking for the leg into Manapouri. I came across a guy swimming with his golden retriever- lift over the hill? Sure thing! He dropped me off at the shop where I got a drink and had some pack off time. Another TA hiker (Jackson) arrived and we walked out together for awhile. It wasn't long before he left me behind though and I continued on the track, now back in the forest. It was a really nice track( which by now I'm sure you've picked up, equates to little mud, not too many steep bits and an easy to follow trail), but it was getting towards the pointy end of the day and my shoulders and legs had had enough. Finally made it to the road and got offered a lift into Ngunguru straight away- yes please! Hokey Pokey and passion fruit ice cream - just the ticket to get me through the last few kms to Riverbank B&B where I had planned to camp the night.
I arrived at Riverbank to find Barnaby, a TA hiker that I had met at Paihia, and a small not very level camp site in amongst the veggies. I was just about to text Harriet and Alex when they texted me about another camp site in Ngunguru. So back into town And then to Mila's place - a quirky little campground with ducks, chickens and a very friendly Labrador. Mila gave us some eggs which we manifested into some fried rice by combining it with some bits and pieces from our food bags.