Monday, February 27: Cold to begin with, very sunny, a couple of high clouds collecting in the evening
Tramping: 14.1 km
Loch Maree Hut (Doc)
Rather cool this morning, as I had left the door open in the middle of the night. For breakfast I started on the second packet of biscuits which I preferred over the rather bland sesame ones. Had to start rationing the muesli bars for lunch and was considering when I might have two eggs for breakfast. The sun rose in one far corner of the Dusky Sound, quite unphotographable, but anyhow.
Some of the gear was still wet, but at least clean and as I was tightening up my boots, one of the base eyelets snapped – I thought at first it was the shoelace, if it had been, then at least it would have been repairable. Relaced the boot to cover the gap, but noticed that the other eyelets are not looking healthy either. So much for Jack Wolfskin. Then off I set.
The track appeared to go rather quickly in the return direction. Once or twice I lost the way for a short while, but then was soon back on track. Checked once whether the beach was visible, but it was well under water. A little while later the water wasn’t so deep, and it was the only opportunity to bypass the really high part of the high road, and I took it to walk along in about 30 cm of water to the estuary. Pace was not great but it must have been faster than going over the hill. Was there after about 70 minutes.
The trip through the swamp was soon over, and the long dry stretches seemed to be much shorter. I had a lunch break @ 13:40 just over one of the regular footbridges, a bit further down the track from the place where I had met Jack & Nico. I could recognise the end of the flat section and there was a bit of climbing around a new section. Finally the flat part towards the hut turned up. I had taken a couple of pictures of the hut across the lake and when I arrived Cathy & Dave and their three friends were there. Somewhat later another couple turned up as well (apparently on their way to Supper Cove), all coming from Lake Roe, also a French woman, Ida, coming from Kintail.
Dinner was a repeat of last night’s treat, the rice seemed to go fairly well and it certainly rejuvenated me. Spot OK was sent, people are discussing tramping plans and packing stuff away.
Towards dusk the kea became active and everybody went outside. I took some photos of them playing around.