The trailer was packed, the wife and kids were waiting in the car and Mike Moth needed to run inside to get one last thing from the loft before they set off for their annual camping trip to the Coromandel.
But the 44-year-old jammed his fingers in a metal trapdoor, spending the next three hours in the emergency department and having to endure a week parked up on the beach without swimming.
It was last summer and Mr Moth was heading to the beach village of Waikawau with wife Kelly and three children Kya, 12, Indy, 8 and Kael, 4.
He had just grabbed an LED light from the loft of his Te Atatu Peninsula home and was lowering himself on to a cabinet, as there was no ladder.
"I was holding on to the framework and the hatch closed on my fingers, stripping the flesh off. It was bleeding profusely."
His wife, a nurse, stayed calm and rushed him to hospital, where he had stitches on three fingers.
Mr Moth needed weeks of physiotherapy afterward. It was partially covered by ACC and was crucial to the healing process, he said.
He has been injured several times before while mountain biking, having needed three knee reconstructions and breaking his wrist twice.