Saturday 26th February 2022
Location: 525 Pencarrow Coast Road, Pencarrow Head, Eastbourne, Lower Hutt 5013
We started out in the late afternoon on a beautiful Wellington day (4pm). It was still summer so we knew as long as we were back by 8pm we would be fine. We packed food for dinner and the puffer jackets, knowing that it's notoriously windy on the southern coast.
The beginning of the walk was spectacular. There was a bit of a breeze but it was warm enough for Miss 7 to keep requesting a swim (she actually carried her togs the whole way in a little purse just in case - we'll get back to the togs later).
It took us around 2 hours to get to the lighthouse, mainly because we stopped every 5 minutes to watch the goats on the hillside, walk precariously across boulders and generally muck about.
It was incredibly windy at the lighthouse so everyone put on their puffer jackets and we decided that we'd have our dinner on the return walk somewhere sheltered, out of the wind.
When we turned around we noticed an ominous set of clouds quickly approaching from across the habour. We double checked our weather apps which reassured us the rain wasn't due until 8pm... but not surprisingly they were incorrect . The skies opened just as we were leaving the lighthouse and we got battered by the wind and rain. We hadn't come prepared for rain and only had our puffer jackets which got soaked. Luckily Miss 7 had her togs which she popped on :) ...we kept telling her how lucky she was to get a swim after all (she didn't totally agree).
We started running as we knew we had 7.5km to cover and no more warm layers, with the wind coming from the south the kids could easily get cold. Surprisingly the kids were on board and we jogged back towards Eastbourne halving the time it took us on the way in (only 1 hour instead of 2). We have a running joke about who's ready to teleport out - luckily no-one needed to do that (phew!)
We didn't bother stopping for dinner, deciding we'd have it when we got to the car. But as every walk is an adventure...and stopping to inspect things is part of the journey...we did stop to observe a dead seal just as the rain started to ease.
We arrived at the car soaked through. We cranked the heater, ate dinner in the car and headed home for hot showers before bedtime.
What an awesome adventure! Would love to do this on bikes next time.
Age of Kids: 7yr and 9yr
Walking Time: 3-4 hours
Difficulty: Moderate (just because it's really exposed, the track is a wide gravel road)
Wet Feet: Not due to walking through water.
Amenities: We didn't come across any toilets or amenities.
Dogs: Yes - on lead only
Cellphone Reception: Yes
Things to be aware of: It’s really exposed on the Southern Coast so come prepared for all weather conditions.