Since 2003, having read Geoff Chapple first book about the Te Araroa trail, I have wanted to walk the length of New Zealand. In December 2016 at the age of 47 I suddenly had a strong and clear realization that I had been putting off a ‘bucket list’ experience and the only one that could change that was myself. So I handed in my resignation and told as many friends and family as possible that I would be off walking the country.
The experience is to follow Te Araroa – The New Zealand Trail, which is 3,000 km from Cape Reinga to Bluff. Typically hikers commence from Cape Reinga in November and walk south to Bluff, however as I did not commence until late January I made the walk from Bluff north to Cape Reinga. Its a journey that usually takes the best part of 4 months or approximately two months per island to walk. It is not a race and as I was intending to make the trip alone I needed to be cautious, rational and take it slow. I wanted to enjoy the journey and make it all the way safely and in one piece. Plus I also wanted to get out and meet New Zealanders, stop to help with events and walk other trails around New Zealand which are not part of the official Te Araroa trail. This effort was not to go unrewarded, therefore I was fundraising and raising awareness for St John along the way.
About St John
St John is at the front line of medical response, providing emergency ambulance services throughout the majority of New Zealand.
They are also part of a much broader picture of health care, through our provision of first aid training, event medical services, AEDs (defibrillators), first aid kits and supplies, medical alarms, youth groups and a wide range of community programs.
All around New Zealand, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, St John members care for people, helping in medical emergencies and enhancing their health and well-being.