There were many of us. I believe one reason for this was that participants had already purchased their ferry tickets ahead of time, making it harder to pull out. Twenty adults and sixteen kids boarded a 10 am ferry to Quail Island. Our first stop was at Otamahua Hut, where we had our initial lunch – yes, you heard it right, our first lunch was just 10 minutes after we started walking. From the hut, we ascended to the island’s summit, which stood at 86 meters above sea level. While it may not have been very impressive for James (12), who routinely summits 2000m mountains with adults, we were treated to a nice sculpture and some great views. We continued to circumnavigate the island and took a proper lunch break on the beach with shipwrecks. The kids began running around, throwing rocks, spotting birds, scrambling up a big rock, and even suggesting jumping into the sea, a proposal politely declined by the adults.
After lunch, we continued toward Whakamaru Beach, where we spent a considerable amount of time playing with balls and frisbees. This time, it was quite challenging to prevent the kids from running into the sea, and some of them eventually did. The adults quietly watched them, trying not to feel too cold on a slightly drizzly day. We returned on a ferry at 3:30 pm.
Overall, it was a fantastic day at a very relaxed pace. I’d say it was more about spending time with the kids and nurturing their love for the outdoors, which will hopefully pay off in the future when we plan more adventurous trips. The organisers also received a lot of positive feedback, which was very satisfying and justified why we’re doing this.
Stats: 6.3 km, 5 h 15 min, 140 m ascent
Participants: Michal Klajban (leader, scribe, GPX, photos), Jim Schofield (leader), James Scofield (leader), Kate + son and daughter, Nic Low + son, John Kerkhofs, Helen Ryan, Nicole Kerkhofs + daughter and son, Hazel Sligting + family, Danielle Petrie + son and daughter, Charu Uppal + family, Frances Charters + family, Bill Johnson + son, Warren Lee, and others
Tramped on 7th October, 2023.
Max elevation: 90 m
Min elevation: 2 m