GIVE PHIL 5 RADIO NZ INTERVIEW; and latest updates

20 Dec

FIRST: I just received an email from Radio NZ and they are going to call me for an interview tomorrow(Wednesday 21 December) at 2:20 PM, NZ time (5:20 PM Tuesday, December 20, Pacific Coast time). Here is a link that gives you several ways to listen:

And the latest updates:

Hamilton > Mercer > Auckland > Orewa > Kaiwaka

Day 47 – 54 km/33.6 miles later…
(Day 48 – Rest)

I left Tirau about 7:30 am after another riveting conversation with Antoinette and went on my way towards Cambridge and then eventually to Hamilton. I had been waiting for Hamilton to meet up with my buddy, Rawiri(Raw) King, and his fiancé, Jess Berber. Raw and I played rugby for the Seoul Survivors in Korea before he moved back to his homeland, NZ, to return to school.  Jess joined him there an they have been in Hamilton since.

The day had been wet and it was sadly just the beginning of a 5 day stretch of terrible, wet, blistery weather. My feet paid for it. I won’t post any pics, but my feet have never been so thankful to see the sun
Anyways I got through the day and arrived to Hamilton and gave Raw a shout. 10 minutes later I see Jess on her bike, set to accompany me on the last 4 km of the run. At there place was a hot shower and protein shake or me to gulp down. We caught up, chatted for a bit then went out for dinner on Hood St., a popular Hamilton bar strip. I liked the name more than anything, so Raw and I looked as gangster as we could and took a pic with the street sign :-).

Crashed that night well rested and relaxed, looking forward to sleeping in and taking care of some chores.  Sadly, I had to say good-bye to my trusty Kindle that took a terrible dive in Taupo. Finished the day with some homemade hamburgers and a relaxed evening with Jess and Raw.
I’m really happy I decided to head through Hamilton, for initially I wasn’t planning on it. It was great to see both of my wonderful hosts again and it was fantastic to see them doing well. Huge thanks to Raw and Jess and hope to see you both soon!

Oh yeah… If all goes well, this will be my last full rest day!

Day 49 – 67.8 km/42.1 miles later…

Took off in the rain once again and made my way to a little truck stop town, Mercer. It’s right before the highway turns into a motorway and boots the cyclists and pedestrians to the curb/surface streets.  Luckily, the day seemed to pass quick. It was a pretty flat run making it easy and allowed me to focus on my technique for a good while.
Shout out to my buddies back home, Nick, Matt, Tim, and Dre for calling me via Viber and making my day, while I was alone at the truck stop restaurant 🙂 Certainly a cool surprise.

Day 50 – 58 km/36 miles later…

Another rainy day but a big milestone for the run…Auckland! Since I could no longer run on the highway, I had to take surface streets, the main one being the Great South Road. Sounds epic, right?? 🙂 One big observation I developed after going through several major cities: surface streets have a higher capacity for tougher terrain. Basically, they are hillier and the hills are steeper. This day they only lasted for the first couple hours, then once I got into the Auckland suburbs, the land flattened and made for smooth sailing into the city and Mt. Eden, where I was staying at a hostel that evening. I past a few Auckland landmarks, one being the theme park, Rainbow’s End, but was disappointed when I found no gold or leprechauns 😦 On my way out I also passed by the historic Eden Park, a famous rugby park where the All Blacks won the World Cup this year!

Day 51 – 54 km/33.6 miles later…

Orewa… And back to the beach! But another day of clouds and rain making the dogs(feetsies) howl despite the layers of tape:-(. But I got there, stayed in a hostel, met a cool Englishman, a traveling Montanan, and a Kiwi who cut me up some aloe vera for my blisters. A laid back night for a laid back beach town. Was off the next morning by 7 for the next leg…

Day 52 – 63.4 km/39.4 miles later…

The next stop was a small inland town called Kaiwaka. Got there in about 8.25 hours sticking to my average of just under 8 km/5miles per hour.
The destination brought me to a small motel where I stayed. It was a pretty average night but it was the lunch stop that was special…

About halfway through my run, I stopped at a place called Top O The Dome, a little cafe coincidentally located at the top of the main hill in a township called Dome Valley(all quite appropriate, right? 🙂 There I came across a guy known as DBBrad. Brad owned an architecture/construction business in the states until he felt he was not going in the right direction. So he sold his business, and hit the trail. The Te Araroa Trail that is.  This trail was recently opened and spans the entire length of the country, through treacherous and bushy terrain most of the way.

Once I introduced myself to Brad our interaction took off, but sadly I had to cut it short to get on my way. Nonetheless we exchanged several stories, theories on travel, North and South Island contacts, and emails to keep in touch. Brad was a super-cool dude and I look forward to meeting up with him later on his hike around the Wellington area.  Check out his website and blog here ( for information on him and his adventures and also some pics of us and a short video of my little spiel! Cheers buddy, see you soon!

Ok so that pretty much catches me up to where I am today… Whangarei (pronounced Fahngeray). But you will have to wait a few days to hear about this one.

Be sure to check out the Facebook page( for more pics and you will hear from me soon…
Peace out chyall!!

Big Cat


One Response to “GIVE PHIL 5 RADIO NZ INTERVIEW; and latest updates”

  1. care December 20, 2011 at 7:50 PM #

    LOTSA LOVE .. care

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