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December 2021 Issue
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I’m doing it to rehabilitate

Earlier this year, Di Celliers and her husband both had surgery. They’re walking 1200km to get back on track this summer.

Last year during lockdown, Di Celliers decided she was going to start tramping. 

“I subscribed to Wilderness, ordered the clothing and all of the gear and hiked around New Zealand with a friend, doing the Northern Circuit, Heaphy Track and the Milford Track.”

Her husband was unable to join her due to knee problems, but after he had knee replacement surgery in March – and Di had foot surgery in April – they’ve started rebuilding their fitness with Walk1200km.

“We’ve got hikes booked for this summer so this challenge is just perfect for us. Now if it’s a miserable day, we just go out anyway.”

The couple live in Browns Bay and have been exploring local walks during Auckland’s lockdown.

“We’ve been getting out there and finding local tracks which has been fantastic. My favourite one is Long Bay to Okura River, which is about 8.6km. I also recently discovered a great track from Dacre Cottage to Stillwater. We never walk less than 3.3km each day (the daily average required), so we’ve actually built up a credit.”

Di says walking each day has also helped with the uncertainty of Auckland’s lockdown.

“Getting fresh air, looking at the birds – it’s just beautiful and it helps you to focus on the positives.

“I’ve been convincing friends to walk as well. When you hear 1200km, it sounds impossible but when you break it down, 3.3km a day is nothing.”

Di hopes to hike the Aotea Track on Great Barrier Island and the Paparoa Track Great Walk with her husband this summer, covid-willing.

Have you signed up to do the Walk1200km challenge? Register here.