Have shoes, will travel

Walking holiday: Julie Millar
Walking holiday: Julie Millar

We've all heard of a 'working holiday'. Julie Millar has come up with a new one: 'a walking holiday'.

An avid tramper the Masterton lawyer is taking three months out from work to trek the spine of the South Island.

She plans to complete the 1400km of Te Araroa in 10 weeks, setting out shortly after Christmas.

Dubbed the greatest New Zealand adventure there is, Te Araroa is New Zealand's trail, a continuous 3,000km walking track stretching from Cape Reinga in the North of New Zealand to Bluff in the South. It was officially opened in 2011.

For a keen tramper then what better way to see the country.

"I've always wanted to see a lot more of the South Island and this seems like a really good way of doing it."

She won't be alone, if all goes to plan. Husband Glen is not scheduled to join up with her until two thirds through the trail rendezvousing in Queenstown. Before then Julie has several tramping colleagues tagging along. But there are still sections of the track where she will be going solo, and she remains hopeful of teasing out other hikers to join her.

Walking the whole of the South Island leg of Te Araroa requires meticulous planning with food stops up to a week apart. Julie plans to write a blog updating her progress. Wairarapa News will be following her with regular snippets from her travels.

Julie's walk is not just about personal adventure. She also plans to raise money for a Carterton toddler who has a degenerative muscle wasting disease. Quinn Lyford, 3, was diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy earlier this year. Julie hopes her walk will raise awareness and also money to support Quinn's family for the challenges they face in the future.

To get in contact with Julie email oldsjulie@hotmail.com

Wairarapa News