Long ride on a sandy road
It used to be part of the "highway" that linked Wellington to Hawke's Bay, but now Wairarapa's east coast is a seldom used route of travel on horseback.
That is all going to change in mid February when a large group of riders and their steeds take the beautiful trek up therugged coast to celebrate the centenary of the Castlepoint Lighthouse.
Joe Brown of Langdale is leading a 30 horse cavalcade from Palliser to Castlepoint and says although the trek will present some challenges it should be a "reasonably easy ride".
Taking four days, the trail will head mainly along the coast, but will need to veer inland to negotiate a couple of tricky sections.
The group plans to camp at the Palliser Lighthouse on February 12 and ride up the coast to Tora the next day.
On this first day of the trek they travel up the coast past Ngapotiki and then inland at White Rock Station to Tora. Staying overnight at the shearers' quarters on the Murphy's property, they then head up to Glenburn Station the following day.
There is a straight run up the coast on the third day to Uriti and then around Riversdale to the Broughton property where they will camp for the third night. The final day's riding is up to the Whareama River and then inland again.
The group will head up the river bank and through Whareama and Otahome, and up to Castlepoint in time for the celebrations.
Joe has been riding horses most of his life and takes frequent treks throughout the country.
Most of the participants on this coastal cavalcade will be other horse trekkers from around the North Island that he has met on his adventures.
For thirty horses and riders there is a considerable amount of logistical support that goes into a ride like this. Rotary Clubs are organising the meals along the way and horses need to be floated to and from the drop-off and pick- up points.