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.

    Sunday, October 21, 2012

    Kohaihai and Oparara Caves

    With heavy rain overnight the river was high, dirty, and unfishable, so we decided to head up the coast north of Karamea.

    The first stop was at Kohaihai - as far north as the road goes. Kohaihai marks the southern-most end of the Heaphy track, but we were just here to eat our lunch and have a look around.

    After lunch we drove back down the road to Oparara. The turn off is only about 5 minutes drive down the road from Kohaihai, but the 14km in to the carpark takes a long time on the narrow, winding, unsealed road. With kids in tow we did just one of the two arches and the two readily-accessible caves - photos below.


    Kohaihai River mouth.
    Kohaihai Shelter
    Kohaihai Shelter at the end of the Heaphy track

    A Nikau palm just across the swingbridge.
    Looking south along the beach.

    Moria Gate Archway

    Moria Gate Arch
    Moria Gate Arch
    Stalactites on the roof of the arch.

    Patterned Limestone
    Patterned limestone underfoot.
    Heading back up out of the arch.

    Forest on the way to the arch.

    Crazy Paving

    Crazy Paving
    First view of the tesselated floor of Crazy Paving
    Cave Weta
    Cave weta. We saw only one of these.

    Cave Spider
    The large cave spider, spelungula cavernicola.
    We also only saw one of these.
    Egg Sack
    White egg sack of the cave spider hanging over the
    tesselated floor.

    Box Canyon

    Box Canyon
    Inside Box Canyon
    Formations at the side of Box Canyon. These are
    side passages easily large enough to walk into.

    Box Canyon Entrance
    Looking back at the entrance to Box Canyon, with
    people to show the scale.
    Rain Forest
    Water streaming from moss beside the entrance to
    the caves.


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