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.

    Saturday, February 5, 2011

    Thompsons Track and Mt Eliza

    My first foray into the Kaimais, a hike around the Thompsons Track - Mt Eliza loop with Heather Andrews. The weather was hot and humid.

    Heather makes her way around a bog
    From the carpark we set out along Thompsons Track and quickly found that it had many bogs and ruts created by 4WD vehicles. Some required a relatively careful sidle around. But one caught Heather out... mud she thought was only an inch deep ended up being knee deep! A quick wash in a nearby puddle, and then a good excuse to splash around in the next stream across the track!

    Oops! That was deeper than expected!

    After a deceptively gradual climb we found ourselves at the "summit" of the Track. Looking west there were expansive views of the Waikato. Looking east were views back towards Tauranga.

    View east from the top of Thompsons Track
    Heading across the open grassland towards
    Motutapere (left) and Mt Eliza (out of picture to the

    From here we turned north to follow the DOC tramping track towards Motutapere and the Mt Eliza turnoff. This section started with a steep climb through native bush and then emerged out into open grassland with views to Motutapere, Mt Eliza and the Waikato.

    Disappearing back into native bush the track became significantly more rugged as we wound our way around the side of the hill to the track junction. At the junction we found our first DOC sign and turned east to head up and over Mt Eliza. DOC times were 1h20 to the Mt Eliza Mine and 2h30 back to the carpark.

    The track surface was very easy underfoot as we descended for a while before beginning another climb to get to the top of Mt Eliza. The top of Mt Eliza is quite flat, and we were never entirely sure that we had found the summit... until we started down the very steep track down the other side. By now we were feeling a bit tired and were very glad to be going down this track rather than up it!

    Mine Entrance
    Mt Eliza Mine entrance
    We took a short detour to the sign-posted Mt Eliza mine entrance (just 60m from the main track). The tunnel looked in good condition, but we did nothing more than poke our heads in the entrance.

    After the Mt Eliza mine the track levelled off a lot and wound its way around the side of a hill while crossing a few side streams. When we reached the main (Waitekohe) stream we decided it was time to dump our packs and stand in the water for a while. We briefly toyed with the idea of full immersion, but the once we were standing in the water thought better of it! Our legs felt decidedly heavy after standing in the cool water, not helped by the track climbing again on the way back to the carpark.

    Blue Fungi
    A small bright blue fungi spotted by Heather at
    the bottom of the Mt Eliza track.
    Arriving at the Waitekohe Stream.


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