Get the low down on the Hiking New Zealand and Active Earth Adventures team. We asked Anne Murphy what she gets up to when she is not working and/or hiking.
I grew up in New Zealand’s kiwifruit capital, Te Puke – surrounded by kiwifruit! There was so much kiwifruit that we used to buy the non-export fruit for NZ$10 a ton to feed to our cows. You had to ration the kiwifruit supply to the cows as they loved it and too many kiwifruit resulted in some pretty messy cows in the shed!
I moved to the big smoke, Auckland, for university and worked in the city there after study but the lure of overseas travel was too much. After meeting Daniel in London and then a stint guiding and managing a lodge in Spain we decided that it was time to head back to New Zealand and make the South Island home.
Rangiora is where we call home and is classic small town New Zealand - we love it! We got our first set of traffic lights last year and about to get our first escalator – we have hit the big time.
As far as small towns go we have all we need, a busy main street with plenty of shops eager to take your money, a cinema, an indoor pool and most importantly five great mountains within 30 minutes’ drive when you have a chance to go for a quick hike or trail run. Our two children love the rural lifestyle and are always excited to get out in the surrounding hills.
When I am not working, hiking or training for some adventure race I am generally talking about work or planning a hike, trail run, mountain bike or rogaine. Luckily my family and friends are all pretty tolerant and ‘cut from the same cloth.’ I’ve written a few blogs about our Adventures for the Girls.
It is an occupational hazard when your passion becomes your work and you work with your spouse - the line between work and home life is somewhat blurred!
I do like my coffee and New Zealand is pretty blessed with fantastic boutique coffee roasting cafes. I buy my coffee beans locally from coffee worx and if I haven’t managed to pull off two espressos before leaving home I sometimes have to grab a takeaway. I have to try pretty hard to turn a blind eye to the coffee worx slices as I collect my coffee beans!
The Far North, New Zealand.
I have done this trip as a custom Family Far North. We travelled with another family of four and had a fantastic time. Coming from the South Island we basked in the sunshine by day and celebrated being able to sit around late into the evenings just in a tee-shirt and pair of shorts. The walks took us to some great swimming spots so just when the kids thought they might be getting a little tired of the walking they got to swim and recharge in the sun before heading off for the remainder of the hike.
Choose the Far North, so you can squeal with sheer joy as you hurtle down the massive sand dunes of Te Paki, so you can experience the pleasure of a full days hiking to remote beaches and so you can watch the sun go down and feel incredibly lucky to be in such a gorgeous place. I would happily do this trip every year.
Where we go on the Far North Kiwi-style tour is remarkably un-touristy. We did this trip at Easter and expected to share this experience with thousands of Aucklanders and overseas tourists alike. Yet the itinerary takes us to these absolute 'gems' of places that no one else seems to know about - it blew me away!