5 Feb: Braeburn Track, Springs Junction


We fled the swarming sand flies, said good-bye to the gorgeous Lake Rotaroa, and set off on the smooth dirt of the Braeburn track. Four stream crossings and plenty of climbing later, we arrived in Murchison to find our friend Greg had made it. We chatted over second breakfast (kumara pie). He stayed in town to do more repairs as we headed for Springs Junction.


After following the Matakitaki River south, our route then turned onto Maruia Saddle Road, which ranked as a favorite among all of the spectacular paths and roads we covered. Possibly not wide enough for a car, the road wound up and up through vibrant green forests. The descent, swooping through the forest until we emerged into pasture land, was just as magical as the ascent.



Arriving at the Marble Hill campsite after the hot day of riding, we swam in the clear cold water of the Maruia River surrounded by mountains and forest. We saw our first flightless bird, the weka, rooting around for food.



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