Routeburn Track - Day 2
19 January 2018
People normally do the Routeburn Track over a period of three days, but I decided to take my time and to do the walk over four days instead. This gave me plenty of time to enjoy the lovely beech forest of the South Island and to make the most of the expense in getting here. As such the previous day had been a short 2 hour walk to Lake Howden.
This also leads to the Lake Howden Hut being smaller and more cosy with less people than the other Great Walk Huts which was nice.
As we were already at Lake Howden, and several hours into the Routeburn Track we took the morning super easy, a very strange experience for me.
On the Routeburn Track I didn't see as much wildlife as I had seen on the Milford Track; too many people on the Routeburn - but some birds were still spotted.
We stopped for lunch in an open area called The Orchard dotted with ribbonwood trees, a nice area to relax, and you can see why it is called the The Orchard - it does look a bit like an Orchard.
We reached Lake Mackenzie just before 3pm and again I went straight for my togs and went for a swim – and there were a few others swimming this time. I wanted to get clean, refresh myself and cool down after the long day walking - but then I decided to go for a proper swim and I headed off to the other side of a small cove of Lake Mackenzie . It was nice to use my arms and shoulder muscles after all the walking, I came out very refreshed, through I did find the middle of the swim quite tiring.
During the Hut talk that night the Doc ranger mentioned ‘split rock’ which I of course wanted to explore right away;
So even through it was late we had to headed off as the sun was setting at full speed for the 30 minutes to walk to this huge rock with a large crack in it. I went in one side and popped out the other-side – very cool.
Then it was a quick walk back to the hut and got in just before it got dark.