Ranger Amanda Salt arrives at work at the Department of
Conservation during Walk2Work yesterday. Photo by Linda
Dunedin ranger Amanda Salt is used to long hikes. But
putting her best foot forward from Abbotsford to the Octagon
for Walk2Work yesterday took her a little out of her comfort
''I thought it would be a good thing to do. During winter,
I'm usually just crunching data, so I spend all day sitting
at my desk at the moment,'' the 45-year-old said.
''I left home at 5.40am and got to work at 7.30am. I just
cruised along through Green Island and Kaikorai Valley Rd
listening to the radio. I didn't see many other people about.
The whole suburb was black,'' she said.
''It felt really good. It's something I'd like to do more
often. I usually drive to work every day.''
It was not the first time she had completed the 10.5km hike
to the Department of Conservation offices in Lower Stuart St.
''I did it in the snow two or three years ago, when the car
was stuck and there was no public transport. I got stick from
my workmates for turning up that day.''
However, Miss Salt was not keen to repeat the trip after
work, instead taking the bus home. More than 130 Dunedin
commuters swapped their cars for calisthenics yesterday, DCC
safe and sustainable travel co-ordinator Charlotte Flaherty
said. A kiosk was set up in the lower Octagon to welcome the
Walk2Workers to town with free coffee, bananas and goodie
''We asked them to mark where they'd walked from on a map and
we carried out a survey on jay-walking, which we'll use to
help us improve road safety for pedestrians,'' Mrs Flaherty
''We had lots of very positive feedback. Some people I spoke
to had walked into work for the first time.''
A series of lunchtime walks would start at midday from the
Dunedin Public Art Gallery on Monday, Wednesday and Friday
over the next two weeks to encourage people to continue
walking, she said.