When a British couple completed their 3000km walk from Bluff to Cape Reinga to raise money for the Nepal rebuild, they burst into tears.
Carl Hutchinson and Adele-Ivy Harris completed their 27-week journey yesterday afternoon. They had set out in January.
They have raised more than $13,000 through Givealittle. Their final trek down Ninety Mile Beach was a moment overwhelmed with emotion for the couple.
"It was a really special moment. We could see the lighthouse 20m away and we had the massive urge to run down towards it but we calmed down and walked there slowly,"
When the couple made it to the end, both burst into tears, hugging each other.
At that moment Hutchinson asked Harris to marry him.
She of course said yes. "It just feels right after the journey we did together. "We want to tackle life together," Hutchinson said.
Both said the journey to walk from the bottom of New Zealand to the top was incredible.
"We loved every minute of it. It really was an amazing sense of achievement."
The pair aimed to walk 20km a day but also had days off to spend time in different towns to meet the locals and to collect donations for the Nepal rebuild.
"We always talked to someone who had a brother, sister or other family members who had been to Nepal or who married someone from Nepal.
"It seemed like everyone had a link to Nepal or the Himalayan project," Hutchinson said.
He said it was an awesome way to talk to local people.
The couple spent many nights in tents, DoC huts, hostels and with friendly locals who invited them into their homes.
"We've been taken into so many homes and been treated like family," Hutchinson said.
Harris said one of the highlights of the long trek was the beautiful scenery.
"Coming into Nelson Lakes National Park was breathtaking. I've never seen anything like it before."
The pair began their journey in the hot Kiwi summer sun, but finished under Jack Frost's wintry watch.
The coldest night the couple endured was -10C one night, north of Tongariro.
"We huddled in the hut."
By the time they reached Ninety Mile Beach, they were getting "roasted" by the sun. Harris and Hutchinson would now get a well-deserved break, spending a few months on Waiheke Island earning money before heading back home to the UK for Christmas.
The idea to trek from the bottom of the country to the top came about when the pair were travelling in Nepal when the 7.8 magnitude quake struck last April, killing almost 8900 people.
To support Carl and Adele go to: https://givealittle.co.nz/fundraiser/walk4nepal/