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Here is a small sample out of every chapter of Hunting Lucky.

The hut horse stood with his back to the wind and drops of water fell from his eyelashes when he blinked.
Terangaaruanuku, standing at 901 meters, only got the occasional look down at the hut as its veil of cloud was blown about in the wind. Mist rose up out of Arakoko Stream, and the rain met it half way on its trip to add strength to the already flooded river.
I woke up and rolled over without opening my eyes. My dog Tessa thumped the floor with her tail in anticipation. I copped a wet prickly nose in my ear as I leaned over and opened the door to let her outside for the day. She sat at the door with her tail rattling the loose mesh on the deck, then yawned loudly, twice, before padding off down the steps to see to her morning ablutions. It had been raining for three weeks. I rolled over and went back to sleep.

The next time I woke, I found the whole set up was much more suitable. I climbed out of my sleeping bag as bellbird and tui calls echoed through the stands of kahikatea next to the hut. The hut horse now stood steaming in the sun and a huge rainbow formed an archway of colour over the entire valley.


While I lit the fire and put the billy on, I thought about the last three weeks. They’d seemed to drag but now, looking back, it seemed like only yesterday when the chopper had dropped me off with half a ton of gear, keen as to rip into it.
I stared into the roaring fire and my mind travelled further back in time. I realized I was losing track of how long I had spent living alone in the bush, and I couldn’t even work out how many months it had been since I last worked it out.
The billy lid rattled and brought me back to the present. I replaced the billy on the fire with a ten litre pot of water for a shower and went outside to enjoy my morning cup of coffee on the veranda. The day was turning into a real cracker. The last fingers of mist were clearing the ridge tops and Terangaaruanuku looked closer than usual in the clean morning air. She was keeping a constant watch over the valley once again.
I sat looking down the valley in reflection, and remembered the first morning I’d laid eyes on the Whakatane River all those years ago …

From Chapter 1: Rick, Bruce and Hanamahihi

We pulled into a big gravel car park by a big shed, with a big sign up that said ‘Dawson Furs Ltd.’. Bruce was standing outside and a couple of other guys were pacing back and forward, looking busy.
I hopped out of my van and said “G’day,” to Bruce.
“You made it,” he didn’t look that impressed.
“Yep, I couldn’t find Te Tahi Street,” I explained for the second time “And then my phone wouldn’t work.”
“You’re lucky Rick waited. Have you got a map?”
“Nah.”
He yelled out to one of the guys walking around, “Print me off a map of Slaughter Creek!”
Bruce looked over my shoulder. “How much gear you got?” he asked, peering into the back of my van.
“Not a heap,” I said.
After a few minutes, a guy walked out with a map on a piece of A4 paper and handed it over to Bruce.
“You’ll be staying at Hanamahihi and working up Slaughter Creek,” Bruce said, squinting at the map.
Then he screwed it up, saying, “He’s printed off the wrong one, Rick will tell you where to go. Get your gear out – you guys need to get going.”