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Abel - Kayak and Walk / Timing Questions

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Hello-

I’m looking for some help with my Abel Tasman portion of my trip (going in Nov 2014).

I am staying in Picton and plan to leave around 8:30 am to drive to Abel. I’m guessing this will take maybe 5hrs with stops along the way to take pictures. Is that accurate? This would give me half a day in the park for my “Abel Day 1”.

I have a full day in the park the next day (Abel Day 2).

I need to drive to Greymouth the next day and get there ideally by 5:30pm.

Knowing that I would like to get a short kayak trip in along with some walking, my questions are:
1) Does anyone know of a kayak tour company that starts their afternoon tours (guided) around 2:00? I think a noon start is just not feasible leaving Picton at 8:30. I could leave earlier if I picked up my car the night before I suppose but I want to make sure I get to see QCD in the daylight.
2) I’ve heard the best portion of the Abel track is Tonga to Torrent. Are there many taxi services or just the main one by the park? The times for the taxis do not run very late – the last drop off at Marahau (where I am staying) is 4pm. Which seems early since sunset will be around 8pm that time of year.
3) I think I would have to leave Abel around noon at the latest to get to Greymouth by 5:30ish. Is that accurate? I’ve looked up times via this forum and AA and it said 5 hrs. I’m wondering if I could take a morning kayak trip on the morning of “Day 3”.

Thanks for your help – this forum is amazing!

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