Distance today: 37.3km
Distance total: 345.8km
Time hiked: 10h 45min
Time total: 99h 52min
Sheryl eventually arrives and shows me around her fascinating place. No running water (only a rainwater tank), no electricity (just two solar panels), no cell phone coverage and a river that needs to be crossed to get to the house. Together with her partner we have some great conversation and in the end they even invite me for a delicious dinner. As the forecast for tonight is very nasty, they offer me a bed in their old caravan. An offer I simply can't decline!
And it's shortly after sunset, when the first drops hit the caravan. It's an unpleasant night with a lot of wind and rain. No way to sleep and I'm sure I will be stuck here tomorrow. But hey, it's actually a cool place to be stuck! The heavy rain eases at around 3 in the morning and I'm still convinced there is no way to ford the river.
However, with the sunrise comes the surprise: The river is not as high as feared and even my hosts are surprised that there isn't more water.
With the sun in my face I cross the river in front of Sheryl's and Pete's house and wave goodbye to my two Trail Angels.
I head upstream, initially on a road that runs parallel. Once the road tails out, I ford the river again to wade in it for the next 4km's. Water level is still a bit high, but never more than waist deep. The water is not as clear as usual, making progress a little slow, as I can only sense my way forward.
But I don't mind at all. It's a lovely hike in the river. A real highlight.
It ends way to soon and the rest of the day is mostly road bashing with the sun shining brightly. My legs are feeling so well today that, after a very friendly lady from Helena Bay offers me some water and apples, I decide to continue a little to Morepork Trail head.
With not many suitable places, to pitch my tent directly on the trail. It's shortly before seven. There's most probably no one behind.