Welcome to my blog. The title originates when my primary athletic activity was competitive walking, but now that I am back to running it also includes that.

Not all content is accessible from the main page: for example, the rogaines, racewalking, and ultramarathon pages all include content that is only accessible from those pages.


Ultramarathons are any event longer than the standard marathon distance of 26.2 miles / 42.195km. Standard distances for ultras are 50km, 50 miles, 100km, and 100 miles. There are also 12 hour and 24 hour track runs, and multi-day "stage races".

I have currently (September 2012) completed 30 ultramarathons, plus 1 DNF at about 66km at the Molesworth Run. Reports for most events are provided below.

See also


Rogaining is the sport of long distance cross-country navigation. Events can be as short as 2-3 hours or the standard 24 hours. Teamwork, endurance, competition and an appreciation for the natural environment are features of the sport. Rogaining involves both route planning and navigation between checkpoints using a variety of map types.

GN Phillips and RJ Phillips, Rogaining, 3rd ed, 2000

The two main umbrella organisations for rogaining in New Zealand are: My reports for selected events are provided below.

Hiking and Mountains

The Hiking, Trail Running, and Mountains pages are all inter-related, but with some subtle differences:
  • Hiking is not an organised race, and may include Coastal Adventures, activities in the Mountains, and hiking in other locations;
  • Trail Running covers organised events, some in the mountains, but others on local hills and trails; and
  • The Mountains category covers both events and hiking in various places that can be classed as mountains.

  • Racewalking

    Racewalking only has to meet two technical requirements:
    • no loss of contact, as judged by the human eye; and
    • the leg has to be straight from the moment of first contact until it is upright.
    More detailed rules are here.

    I'm not particularly good at racewalking, often falling foul of the straight leg rule. But I still give it a go and here are the results of my endeavours.


    This blog is primarily about my walking activities, but sometimes I do run. Here are reports for events where I have run.

    Shorter Races

    I classify events as ultramarathons, marathons, rogaines, and "shorter events". So a "shorter event" is just something that is shorter than a marathon and is not a rogaine. Consequently there's a mixed bag in here: running, racewalking, half marathons, 10k and 5k races, , etc.

    Friday, April 10, 2009

    Turakirae - Mukamuka - Orongorongo Loop

    This always promised to be a big day. We were largely following the course of the "Mukamuka Munter" run, but extending it to make a complete loop. We started at the carparking area on the Wainuiomata South Coast, walked around Cape Turakirae into the Wairarapa, up the Mukamuka Valley, over Mt Matthews South Saddle, and then down the Orongorongo River to the start. Total distance was 39km.

    We started out nice and early and made our way around the coast. Most of this section was on a rocky 4WD road and relatively straight forward. Every so often we might see the odd an orange triangle to indicate that we were on some sort of DOC track, but they were few are far between.

    Part way up the coast is a big shingle fan where a river runs down to the coast after heavy rain. We could have gone straight across the fan, but carrying packs we decided to go for what seemed to be the easier option and follow the 4WD road as it climbed up the side of the fan and then twisted its way through it.

    P4100044Looking at the ocean from on the shingle fanP4100046
    Looking south back where we have come from

    View up the Mukamuka Valley. Mt Matthews rears up
    to the right, and the South Saddle is obvious to the
    left of the ridge.
    We came to what we guessed was Windy Point and the start of a wide bay with the Mukamuka Valley at the other end. Reaching the valley we were greeted with a nice grassy flat and a clear view up to Mt Matthews and the South Saddle. A stop for some lunch in the sun and then it was time to head up the valley.

    The "track" up the Mukamuka Valley
    The Mukamuka Valley has no marked track. In some places there was the impression of where others had possibly travelled before, but in large part it was guess work at most of the stream junctions.

    At last we came to an orange triangle - easily missed - at the last of the stream junctions. I would have taken the wrong junction this time, so it was good to have it there. The track was obvious in some places, less so in others. And then we got to the last steep climb up to the saddle. The track was even less obvious here, but we made the saddle with no dramas. The view on the saddle was superb: to the east we could see down the Mukamuka Valley to the Pacific Ocean; to the west we were looking at the Orongorongo ranges.

    View from South Saddle
    West to the Orongorongo Ranges
    East down the Mukamuka Valley to the coast and the Pacific Ocean

    It was a long trek back from here. First we had to follow the track part way around Mt Matthews, and then follow the notoriously steep descent down to the Orongorongo River. And then it was a very long walk down the river to get back to the coast.

    Heading down the Orongorongo River
    Near the end of the day and near the end of the Orongorongo River


    Map North
    Northern Half
    Map South
    Southern Half

    More photos are available on Flickr.


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