18 + 19 Feb: Camp Bay, Queen Charlotte Track, Marlborough Sounds, and back to Picton
With a few extra days to spend after finishing the route we set out to complete, we took a boat from Picton through the Marlborough Sounds to Camp Bay. Although rain was predicted, we hoped to hike and ride along the Queen Charlotte Track.
Before landing, we enjoyed the scenery as our boat puttered around the sounds for a few hours, picking up and dropping off passengers in various places where roads do not reach. Finally, we made it and set up camp under a brilliant sun.
As we returned from a hike along the track that afternoon, the sun vanished as the wind picked up. The forecasted rain, this once, was real. We ducked into a small cafe to pass some of the rainy evening, but returned to camp for dinner.
That night, after we settled into our tent, the wind picked up, roaring down the mountain and driving rain against our small shelter. We spent a restless night waiting out the storm, as the poor, drenched weka screeched a call in the dark.
The clearing morning and initial climb from camp warmed us. We followed the dirt road, knowing the rain had transformed the track into greasy clay-mud, impossible to ride our loaded bikes on through the steep climbs. The road offered stunning views of the sound as we wound up and down along the coast. We attempted the track for the last section, after the sun had worked to dry what it could.
After Anikawa, the road on which we started our adventure was the road that brought us back to Picton.