Arrival at hut
Suffering from dehydration I slump to the floor. I reach for the water and suck the last drops and watch the world spin. It took us 7 hours it to make it to “Daley's clearing hut”, marked in the centre of this vast bush and our bodies have taken another beating. The dense rain forest was beautiful, every glance up through the canopy greeted with shreds of blue sky cutting through high palm into the cool undergrowth. Below we sweat along the contours on a narrow track, battling over and under huge fallen trees, river crossings and treacherously slippy roots. We see no one.
A slip or a fall is immediately punished by the 30kgs, and the geometry of the packs makes traversing an obstacles tough. Vines claw at our backs, snagging at every twist and decimating our pace. The walking poles I bought in Auckland regularly save my skin, keeping balance and pulling me up sharp river beds. But I am bouyed by the knowledge that the more we eat the lighter our loads become, and I can feel sinews knitting a new frame.