Feb 15 2018

Upcoming Trips

Published by under Uncategorized

2018

Summer Start Time: 9.00 a.m.

21 Feb.
Trampers: Maori Peak/Split Rock M* $9.00 Neil and MargreetPurakaunui/Canoe Beach $8.00 Jill and Judy D
Hikers: Quarry/Chingford Park area E $4.00 Woodside Glen. E $4.00 Jan Y and Peter

28 Feb.
Trampers: Purakaunui/Canoe Beach $8.00 Jill and Judy DMaori Peak/Split Rock M* $9.00 Neil and Margreet
Hikers: McNally Walkway E+ $9.00 Liz and Alex  Mahinerangi/ Waipori area M $9.00 Bob and Leslie

7 Mar.
Both: Clarkesbrae/Nichol’s Farm M* $7.00 Jay and Jan B Continue Reading »

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Feb 14 2018

Bull Ring, Flagstaff walkway/Pineapple Track

Published by under Both Hikers & Trampers and tagged:

Location: 13.3 km from car-park.
Click Dunedin’s Hills’ History for background information.
Click Pineapple Track for background information.
Click Pineapple and Flagstaff walk for background information.
See Flagstaff Name for its origin.

14/2/2018 Trampers. Flagstaff.

The main tramping group was away this week in camp at Aspiring Hut, but 6 of those left at home felt the need for their usual Wednesday tramp, so decided to go and do something about it.

An early shower at 8.30 am, and low cloud in Mosgiel didn’t look very promising but as we drove up the gravel road to the Bull Ring our cars were raising dust.

The day was overcast and very pleasant, with a very slight breeeze increasing only a little in the afternoon. No cloud to bother us.

The summit of Flagstaff was our first objective and from where we viewed a helicopter operating from beside the Firebreak Track. It was transiting close to us, and spraying somewhere low down in the Nichols Creek area apparently – out of our view.

Morning tea was taken at the junction of the first cross track to the Firebreak. During our stop, 2 hidden birds, only metres away, were calling – a single “click” sound. After a time one flew a few metres and was briefly visible before going back into cover. My guess was that it was maybe a Fern Bird? Are there any ornithologists out there who can confirm if there are any Fern Birds up on Flagstaff?

We continued along the Pineapple Track to the next junction, and turning left crossed to the Swamp Ridge Track, to follow it to Swampy Summit.

We travelled at an easy pace, stopping for a rest at times at the top of the steeper bits. Eventually we came to the top of the Swine Spur Track, and followed it down about 50 metres to admire the recently erected track sign – well done Ian H.

It was 12 noon now and it was decided democratically by one person (not me) that we would stop here and have our lunch in the shelter of the Airways building.

Afterwards we retraced our steps back along Swampy Ridge and then the Firebreak Track …

Margreet pic.

… to finish at the Bull Ring. Again our pace was easy and pleasurable allowing plenty of time for taking (by some anyway).

On returning to Mosgiel we all adjourned to the Blackstone Cafe for after tramp relaxation.

In summary it had been a very enjoyable day out for the six of us, and we had some good exercise in travelling the 13.5 km. – Art.

29/4/2013. Trampers. Bullring, Skyline, Swampy.
As it was such a nice looking day after all the wet weather we have had, it was decided to stay in the sun for the day. So we went to the bull ring with the intention of going to Hightop. We took the long way around by going up the Skyline track, & along the tops to the junction with the track up to Swampy summit, & down to Booth Rd. The track up to Swampy summit was in quite good condition, but it doesn’t get any less steep as time goes on !!! On the way up the Skyline track we stopped at the NEW seat overlooking the city [which was covered in fog on this occasion] for morning tea. Lunch was held at the last Airways building …
Lunch time. (Heb pic, Ken caption)

Lunch time. (Heb pic, Ken caption)

… just at the start of the Swampy Ridge track leading over to the Green Hut track. A few of us walked down to the University research building during our lunch break, just to be able to say “I’ve been there”. After lunch it was decided that we would return to the cars by the same route, so we set off to the accompanying display from a helicopter …
Chopper topping up with spray for gorse. (Heb pic, Ken caption)

Chopper topping up with spray for gorse. (Heb pic, Ken caption)

… that was spraying gorse & broom at quite low levels. it was a brilliant day out, …
Great day

What a great looking day !!

… with no wind, & glorious sunshine all day, which had us discarding clothing to keep cool.
Looking forward to many more days like this.
Walked 16.6km; moving time 4hrs; ave speed 4.1km/hr; climbed 658mtrs; Max height 749mtrs. – Ken
9/4/2014. Hikers. Bullring, Flagstaff Forest, Firebreak, Flagstaff walkway. E. Leaders: Bruce and Marjorie.
GPS of route

GPS of route. Decipherment!: ’10’ denotes start/finish. Disregard the red overlay and read ’11’ as ‘1’ Otherwise fairly readable.

Cars met at the Bullring.
Of special interest was the presence with us of Continue Reading »

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Feb 14 2018

Aspiring Hut

Published by under Uncategorized

14/2/2018. Report on Mt Aspiring Hut Trip 12-15th February

Eight keen trampers  signed up for this trip. Wendy and I tramped in to Aspiring Hut early on Monday 12th February to secure bedding in one room for all of us.  Jill, Clare, Janine, Keith, Helen and  Phil arrived late in the afternoon after battling a head on Northwest wind and driving rain. This walk was 9km and approx. 2.5 hours. Aspiring Hut is owned by the NZ alpine club and operated by DOC. It was built in 1949 and its exterior is covered in river schist stones. It  is about to undergo a refurbishment which includes earthquake strengthening and interior lining. There are 39 bunks altogether in two bunk rooms. Gas cookers are supplied during the summer season. We all soon settled and prepared our meals.

The next morning it was partly cloudy. The scenery from the hut was superb without going anywhere!

Group. (Helen pic and caption.)

We decided to go up the valley to Pearl flat (2 hours). The valley walk is very pleasant through beech forest and open grassland surrounded by high mountains with clinging glaciers.

We then decided to go up to the Liverpool hut (10 bunks). (1134m – Helen). This track was steeper than expected but the team coped extremely well. We walked up through beech forest on a steep track with rocks and tree roots.

Half way up to Liverpool Biv. (Phil pic and caption.)

This took 2.5 hours. The views from above the hut were superb – either looking down onto the valley below …

View from the Hut hill.(Helen pic and caption.)

… or glaciers on Mt Barff and Mt Liverpool. We were also looking across to French ridge hut which is used by climbers to climb Mt Aspiring.

We got back to Aspiring Hut after a 9 hour walk knowing we had done it!!

That night of the 13th the hut and camping area had its record number of guests at 84. We felt like very rare Kiwis!!!

The next morning was perfectly fine – however our legs knew they had worked the day before.  Unfortunately Wendy had to leave as she had work early the next day. This time we decided to go up the Cascade saddle track …

Liverpool done, off to the Cascade.(Phil pic and caption.)

… – a pleasant walk through red and beech forest.

Morning tea on way to Cascade Saddle. (Helen pic and caption.)

This finally led up to a lookout after 2.5 hours. (1184m. – Helen). The views of the 2 valleys and mountains all around were amazing, especially looking at Mt Aspiring.

Above the bush line on Cascade Saddle. (Phil pic and caption.)

There were quite a few people heading up to the saddle.

On returning to the hut the ladies enticed the men to go down to the river for a dip. [No pics supplied! – Ed.] This was very, very refreshing especially for those who got under the water!!

Another interesting meal was cooked by all. There were a lot fewer in the hut – the men played poker with hilarity. Someone was heard talking in their sleep!

After breakfast and packing up we headed off down to the car park. The weather deteriorated with the following North west wind very strong – even blowing 2 of us over on the grass. The dust was rising in the river bed. The rain followed and it was quite wet by the time we got to the carpark. Rob Roy glacier was left for another day!  We were then off home having coffee and ice creams on the way.

Thanks to all of the team for making it a fun trip.

Also thanks to Eleanor for suggesting the trip but unfortunately was unable to make it.

Dave

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Feb 14 2018

Cleghorn St, Signal Hill tramps

Published by under Trampers,Year round

Distance Chingford from carpark: 20 km.
Follow Old Main North Road to Cleghorn Street which has the best view of the harbour. Walkway sign.
Walk starts starts at the gate on right, up McGregors Hill. Beyond stile Pine plantation on 3rd stile at summit.
Gravel road 10 minutes to end. Locked gate. Last stile. Signal Hill road.
15. 14/2/2018. Hikers. Cleghorn Street to Normanby Pub via Signal Hill and Centennial Memorial. M. Leaders: Pam and Ian.

Route map, courtesy Ian.

Clive pic.

Clive pic.

14. 14/8/2013. Hikers. Chingford Park, Cleghorn St, Signal Hill, round trip. M. Leaders: Lex and Graham.
We parked near Chingford Park and walked up the hill on the Mt Cargill Rd to the turn-off to Signal Hill.  Morning tea on the side of the road about halfway up.  It was blowing a gale and pretty cold but with everyone rugged up well there were no dramas.  Margaret and Les chose to turn back – it was hard going and I don’t blame them!
Elaine in bath. (Judy pic).

Elaine enjoying bath. (Judy pic).

 Lunch in the shelter of the trees near the top …
Lunch. (Judy pic)

Lunch break. (Judy pic)

… then across to the masts, and down to the road.  135 steps on the steep descent and a few stiff knees. – Judy
13. 29/6/2011. Trampers. Chingford Park, Cleghorn St, Signal Hill, round trip.

GPS of route, courtesy Ken

We enjoyed the harbour view as we walked along the rather wet and muddy 4WD track after leaving Cleghorn Street.

The view down the harbour was wonderful

With younger members among the trampers now, we are making a faster pace than formerly and reached the ‘signals’ on Signal Hill a bit half an hour earlier than lunch time, so decided to carry on. We found a sunny calm spot on the Signal Hill Road side to enjoy lunch.

Lunch on Signal Hill roadside

12. 8/7/2009 Trampers Chingford Park, North Road, Cleghorn Street, McGregors Hill, Signal Hill, Signal Hill Road round trip. Medium. Leaders: Pat & Bill
Start

First view of harbour and Peninsula. Bill, Pat, Wendy, Ken.

 

St Leonards

St Leonards below.

Charles Cone

Mount Charles and Harbour Cone on Peninsula

Heads

Roseneath, Port Chalmers and Heads

Lunch

Lunch at top of hill. Doug, Arthur, Wendy, Ian, Pat, Bill. (Ken pic)

Dunedin

Down from Signal Hill with Dunedin beyond. Wendy, Ken, Arthur, Pat.

11. 13/5/2009 Hikers. Signal Hill, Cleghorn St. Leaders: Bev H, Joyce

10. 20/7/2005. Trampers. Cleghorn St, Signal Hill.
Harbour view. "Hi Shirley". Bob, Pat, Who?

Harbour view. “Hi Shirley”. Bob, Pat, Dot.

Dunedin from Centennial Memorial

Dunedin from Centennial Memorial

9. 14/8/2002 Logan Park High School, Signal Hill, Cleghorn St, NEV Road. Leaders: Molly, Hazel, Barbara McC
8. 22/5/2002. Alt. Chingford Park, Signal Hill. Leaders: Betty, Colleen.
7. 24/1/2001. Normanby, Signal Hill, Opoho. Leaders: Lance and Lois, Shirley R.
6. 16/8/2000 Bethunes Gully, Opoho. Leaders: Jack & Rosemary, Shirley R.
5. 26/4/2000. Chingford Park, Signal Hill. Leaders: Daphne, Betty, Denise.
4. 24/1/2000 Chingford Park, Old Brown House, Signal Hill, Opoho, Leaders: Lance & Lois, Peter R
3. 22/4/1998. Chingford Park, Brown House, Signal Hill. Leaders: Shirley McN, Shirley R.
2. 16/6/1993. Bethunes Gully, Signal Hill, University Observatory, Bennetts, Bethunes Gully. Round Trip. Easy. Leaders: Shirley, Doreen, Diana, Nel.
1. 1/7/1992. Bethune’s Gully, Signal Hill, University Observatory, Bennetts, Bethunes Gully. Average. Leaders: Ria L, Marie, June, Ray.

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Feb 07 2018

Green Hut & Pulpit Rock

Published by under Hikers

Location: 41 km.
Click Silver Peaks Forest for background information.
No. 21 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “Green Hut & Pulpit Rock return or via Possum Hut. C Williams. Year Round. Long.”
18. 7/2/2018. Both. Green Hut and Pulpit Rock. M. Leaders: Clive and Dave.

On Wednesday we had a very good turn out of 36 hikers and trampers.   The day was overcast so ideal for walking. 25 minutes from the Semple road car park had us all nicely warmed up so time for a cuppa.

(Clive pic)

After morning tea, 16 trampers (a good number!) left for the Green hut clearing. The hikers followed on behind to the old Green Hut site. It was a pleasant walk generally on the ridge through the Manuka and regrowth. After a short break at the clearing it was then steadily uphill for the trampers but ok – we finally got out of the Manuka and could see the track ahead of us leading up to Pulpit rock. There was a cool breeze as we climbed.

 

Nearly there. (Phil pic and caption.)

Finally we made it to the site. We climbed up to the summit – precariously looking round and taking photos of the amazing views 360 degrees around us.

 

We gotta get out of here. (Phil pic and caption.)

Lunch was had in the shelter of a ridge and tussocks near the rock. It was then a pleasant walk back as the breeze had abated. A group of 8 headed down in search of an emergency hut and found it – even with a good water source nearby.

The hikers had lunch at the Green Hut site (where the seats used to be!!

(Clive pic)

It was then down and out and a muster for all and an enjoyable coffee at Waitati. – Clive.

17. 11/5/2016. Trampers. Pulpit Rock. Medium.  Leader: Arthur H.
And summer continued for another day. …
The sky was clear and sunny, the wind was a warm northerly – perfect for our day’s tramp.
We arrived at Mountain Road to find several vehicles already in the car park. We guessed, correctly, that “The Green Hut Group” was out track clearing.

Setting out, we walked for about 15 minutes before stopping for morning tea at the junction where the track from Swampy joins.

The next stop was at “Green Hut” – the hut had been long gone, but the clearing where it once stood is still referred to as Green Hut.

Morning Tea. (Helen pic and caption)

Green Hut stop. (Helen pic)

We were able to admire the 2 recently installed bench seats at the site – actually only one could be admired as the other had already been destroyed! Sadly,  there is no shortage of morons in N.Z. these days.
Continuing on,  the track trends ever upward. We encountered the track clearers at various spots, and stopped briefly to talk, and especially to let them know that all their hard work is much appreciated.
After passing the top of Rosella Ridge, it was only a short distance up to Pulpit Rock. As we approached, 2 of the track clearers were having a brief rest on top before resuming work.

Standing on top of the rock, …

View from top of rock

One of the great views from up on the rock. (Margreet pic and caption)

… one had to hold on tightly to one’s hat as the wind coming up from the other side was strong! Time for lunch. We moved back a few metres to be out of the wind, and settled down in the tussock to enjoy the magnificent view, and our food.

T-Lunch

Lunch on top. (Helen pic and caption)

Afterwards we walked a further 2-3 hundred metres on the track towards “Jubilee Hut”, so as to be able to see “The Pulpit” better.

Pulpit Rock. (Helen pic and caption)

Pulpit Rock. (Helen pic and caption)

No one had thought to prepare a sermon (least of all the leader), so a little reluctantly we turned for home.

We travelled back on the same track, again passing the workers. Two of them had scrub bars, the others using hand operated implements. Mostly downhill now, but some of our group don’t enjoy going down too much as it is a bit hard on the knees.

At “Green Hut” it was discovered that 6 trampers could comfortably sit side by side on the one remaining seat.

Seat

On seat at Green Hut site. (Helen pic and caption)

It was most pleasant there in the sun, but after 10 minutes we resumed our journey. We were back at the cars at 2.35 p.m., very satisfied with ourselves. The wind had not bothered us at all except for right on top of Pulpit Rock.
We stopped at Waitati for a while on the way home, to discuss life in general.
On the day, 10 trampers had covered 11 km. It had been a wonderful day’s tramp. – Arthur H.
16. 4/12/2013. Both. Green Hut site and Pulpit Rock. Medium. Leaders: Lester and Elaine.
Trampers: Silver Peaks No. 2. From the car park, the Green Ridge track was dry, not muddy as it usually is. We had morning tea at the Green Hut site. It was a very hot sunny day.
They we went up the Green Hill track and on to Pulpit Rock, over to Silver Peaks No. 2 to look down the Devils Staircase, returned back to head west to the top of the Painted Forest  to look for Dark Horse Hut. We never found the hut. (Have worked out since [see Hamills book p. 7.08] that we would have had to go on another 10-20 minutes, through a gully and on to the next knoll.) Lunched at the top of the forest and then returned to the car park.
We saw five members of the Green Hut track clearing group. We met a couple from Germany. Also another party of three people and their dog. Very hot tramping conditions – mid-20s. – Heb.
Hikers: Green Hut.
GPS of route

GPS of route

Although the return trip is only 8 km, some of the steeper slopes make it seem longer. – Ian
15. 2/5/2012. Both. Green Hut site and Pulpit Rock. Medium. Leaders: Peter and Wendy.
The entrance track was much improved. Thanks to the Green Hut Track-Clearing Group for working on some Continue Reading »

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Jan 31 2018

Scroggs Hill Road, Seaview Road, McIntosh Road

Published by under Hikers

Distance from Bush Road  carpark: 15 km.

11. 31/1/2018. Hiker. McIntosh/Scroggs Hill Roads. M. Leaders: Alex and Liz.

On a very record hot day 22 hikers reported to Brighton Surf Club to start the weekly Hike. Because of the excess heat to be had it was decided that different hikes would take place to suit individuals.

Three to the beach, Three  to meet at a display shop in their car soon after morning tea break. The rest 16 hikers off to McIntosh road.

From here we would judge distance to walk depending on the day’s temperature .Morning tea break was held at the very interesting display shop where we met the three car members.

Cuppa in stable by the gallery. (Ian pic and caption.)

Sun brolly hat? (Ian pic and caption.)

From here we carried on a further distance where some walkers felt it was a bit too warm and 5 decided to head back.

Route map, courtesy Ian, of the five for whom discretion was the better part of valour. The eleven accomplished the round trip of something over 10 km.

Eleven carried on to the top of hill where lunch took place. From here we made a slow walk down Scroggs Hill road till we arrived back at car park and of to the new Brighton Beach cafe and a well deserved rest.  – Liz and Alex.

10. 15/10/2014. Hikers. Scroggs Hill Road, McIntosh road. M. Leaders: Dorothy, Pat R.
Route

Route

Horse

Horse

Lunch

Lunch

9. 31/7/2013. Hikers. McIntosh Road, Scroggs Hill Road. M Leaders: Liz and Janice
8. 30/9/2009. Hikers. Brighton River Road, (McIntosh Road), Scroggs Hill Road. Easy. Leaders: Neil, Lesley G
Not for nothing is Bill our artistic photography genius. Drainage ditches on the lower parts of the Otokia Stream.
Mr Coutts Canals (Bill pic and caption)

Mr Coutts Canals (Bill pic and caption)

And here is another gem. Trust Bill to notice this. I didn’t.

Goat Tableau. (Bill pic)

Goat Tableau. (Bill pic)

On the climb up McIntosh Road, some sharp-sighted members spied this female Shelduck on a nest when their attention was drawn by the male flying off from it.

Paradise Duck nest in tree trunk.

Paradise Shelduck nest in tree trunk.

Yet further up, we stopped to regroup.

Rest Stop up McIntosh Road

Rest Stop further up McIntosh Road. (Bill pic). Les, Pat, Elaine, Marjorie, Lesley.

Nearing the top of McIntosh Road, a friendly goat proved receptive to any feeding it could get.

Chris feeding goat

Chris feeding goat

This picture says it all. Shed right at the top of Scroggs Hill road.

Shed collapsing on base of boulders

Shed collapsing on base of boulders

Further down Scroggs Hill road, the 15 of us stopped for an early lunch on a lawn – a lawn that had accommodated us on previous occasions as well.

Lunch on lawn

Lunch on lawn

Further downhill again, and there were these friendly pigs. While we were there, the owner tipped food over a far corner of the paddock, and cupboard love triumphed over the affection earlier shown to us.

Kumi Kumi pigs

Kumi Kumi pigs

Thought this gate caption was worth shooting.

A whimsical gate sign.

A whimsical gate sign.

The ancient sod hut looks yet more derelict each time we view it.

The deteriorating sod hut

The deteriorating sod hut

An attractive entrance.

Horse heads on gate

Horse heads on gate

And another one.

Fine stone wall entrance

Fine stone wall entrance

Some enterprise children putting their holiday opportunity to good use, were doubtless surprised and pleased when we brought them considerable custom.

Roadside stall

Roadside stall

A pleasant relaxing day with very little wind. Thanks to Neil and Lesley for a most enjoyable walk.
BTW, the only Tramper turning up for the Rollinsons Track tramp decided to throw in his lot with the greater sociability of the Hikers’ walk. – Ian

7. 2/9/2009 Both. Scroggs Hill and McIntosh Rd Leaders: Chris, Dot.
Otokia Creek mouth from Scroggs Hill Road

Otokia Creek mouth from Scroggs Hill Road

Starting Climb of Scroggs Hill Road

Starting Climb of Scroggs Hill Road. Recognisable: Fred, Pat, Les

Brighton's watertower?

Brighton’s watertower? Chris goes to check gate.

A 'slot' of letterboxes

A ‘slot’ of letterboxes

The souwesterly wind and rain came over in waves, until shortly after the morning tea stop, most of the 19 decided to turn back at the sod hut, with only 5 of us venturing on to the top and down McIntosh Road, to enjoy what sun there was for the day.

Looking down McIntosh Road

Looking down McIntosh Road

Snow on Maungatuas

Snow on Maungatuas

A lovely farm notice

An attractive farm notice

Sunny sheltered lunch spot.

Sunny sheltered lunch spot. Doug, Marjorie, Bruce, Lesley

Peek at Otokia Creek behind lunch spot

Peek at Otokia Creek behind lunch spot

Not far now back to cars

Not far now back to cars

6. 21/5/2008. Brighton – Scroggs Hill Road.

 Once again Wednesday turned up trumps with a very pleasant perfect day for hiking. 11 hikers met at the Brighton Surf Club car park and headed off round the walking track behind the Surf Club, up the hill and round the Big Rock to the Brighton-Scroggs Hill Rd.
Horses or ponies?

Some animals

As we walked up the hill we saw some interesting things, some animals and great scenery and views. Then it was through a farm, onto a farm track which we followed down to the bottom of the hill, along into a gully where we sat and enjoyed out morning tea stop. It was a bit windy but we were quite sheltered in the gully. From there our leader Dorothy took us for an interesting and informative walk through a new and just being established development called Taylors Creek Estate. What wonderful views from most of the sites, but of course, fully exposed to the wind. However, that’s usually the price you pay for your views in coastal areas. Well worth it I would say.

A beach walk

A walk along the beach

After a good look round up there it was back down Scroggs Hill Rd, across Brighton Rd and onto the beach where we found a nice sheltered spot to sit and savour our lunch and the view. A walk along the beach, back onto Brighton Rd, round Big Rock and along the track to our cars ended a very happy and interesting hike. – Bev.

5. Leaders: Dot B, Chris
4. 22/8/2007. Hikers. McIntosh Road, Brighton. Easy+. Leaders: Carmel, Anne R.
3. 25/1/2006. Hikers. River Road, Brighton, Scroggs Hill. Leaders: Chris, Lesley G.
2. 26/3/1997. Brighton Road – Round Trip – Lookout. Leaders: Les W, Mary Y, Evelyn M.
1. 15/7/1998 Seaview Road to Scroggs Hill and McIntosh Rd Leaders: Denise, Peggy M

 

5/7/1989 Seaview Road, Brighton. Average Tramp. Leaders: Eric & Denise, Peggy M, Jean A

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Jan 31 2018

Tracks between Racemans and Rollinsons Road

Published by under Uncategorized

12. 31/1/2018. Trampers. North Coal and Little Coal. M. Leader: Neil M.

9 trampers arrived at the Pump-house to start up Racemans at 9.20 am. We passed Tunnels track junction 1/2 an hour later and continued on till morning tea stop at 10 o’clock. Very pleasant in the bush as it was heating up out in the direct sunlight and the birdsong was all around us.

Group. (Helen pic and caption.)

Reached North Coal junction just after 11 o’clock and after a suggestion of going to the end of Racemans and returning, or going up North Coal and down Little Coal it was decided to do the loop, so up we went. After an hour of steady climbing with plenty of rests  we arrived at Little Coal junction. Was midday and no one was keen to go on the extra 3/4 hour to the picnic area at top of Steve Amies for lunch, so here we stopped. Again very pleasant in the shade and slight breeze.

In the shade of the bush for lunch. (Helen pic and caption.)

After lunch it was mostly down and down in the bush on dry leaves where one had to be careful to not slide, till we arrived back at Racemans track. An hour plus later …

Crossing the stream wishing it was deep enough for a swim. (Helen pic and caption.)

… and we were back at the car park. Most retired to Blackstone for a refreshing drink and a chat. Although the day was very hot in the sunlight it was cool and very pleasant in the bush and everyone enjoyed the walk. – Neil M.

11. 11/10/2017. Trampers. Little Coal Creek and Steve Amies Circuit. M. Leader: Helen.

Eleven trampers left the car park and travelled to Whare Flat parking at the pump house car park. Walked along Racemans track until 9.50am. Too early said one unnamed tramper. Had our morning tea…

Morning Tea. (Helen pic and caption.)

…and carried up Racemans and then up Little Coal Creek Track. Views over to Green Hill, Pulpit Rock…

Pulpit Rock in the distance. (Helen pic and caption.)

…and over to Powder Ridge were seen. Then continued right up to the picnic tables almost at the road to Swampy.  A very pleasant lunch was had there.

Lunch at the top at the picnic tables.(Helen pic and caption.)

Had to go to the road for a look as well looking at the new trees and also older memorial ones which had been planted. Les Murcott, Steve Amies and some others.

On the down trip we went onto Steve Amies track…

Start of Steve Amies Track. (Helen pic and caption.)

…and then down the short cut track. Very steep down it was. Then onto the Tunnel Track and over the swing Bridge and back to the cars.

‘Our lady of October’ (as some botanists know Clematis paniculata) in all her glory. Great to see so many – a sign the possums are being beaten! (Phil pic and caption.)

A  very enjoyable 14.5km walk with lots of steep up and down. A few slipped and an unnamed person fell backwards but had a soft landing. We adjourned  to Blackstones for coffee and guess who was there, all the Hikers having their debrief. – Helen.

10. 21/1/2015. Trampers. Racemans, Raingauge, North Coal, Powder Ridge Loop.
Racemans Raingauge North Coal. (Ken pic and caption.) GPS courtesy Ken.

Racemans Raingauge North Coal. (Ken pic and caption.) GPS courtesy Ken.

Eight people plus Finn the dog turned up to do this tramp. We stopped at one of the track junctions for morning tea break, & then it was along to the end of the Racemans track by the top Silverstream weir, & up the first steep climb on Raingauge Spur. [Oh to have 4WD drive like Finn has !!!]

We had lunch in the grassed clearing…
Lunch stop, with an expectant dog ! (Ken pic and caption)

Lunch stop, with an expectant dog ! (Ken pic and caption)

…not too far from the top of Raingauge, then walked down the road to the Steve Amies Picnic area, where we stopped for a short breather before tackling the North Coal track. We paused long enough to check out the helicopter landing pad, which really needs some serious clearing work done, & then it was off down Little Coal track to the junction with North Coal track. This was when things got a little interesting !! The first part of this is quite steep,…
Another tricky decent (Elinore pic and caption)

Another tricky decent (Elinore pic and caption)

…& there was some storm damage which made the going a bit difficult, but we decided to press on, as going back up didn’t seem to be an option. As we progressed down the track it was obvious that it was going to be a lengthy climb down, as the storm damage didn’t get any better,…
Struggling through the storm damage (Elinore pic and caption)

Struggling through the storm damage (Elinore pic and caption)

…& navigation became an issue, as the track markers were badly obscured, or the trees that they were attached to were no longer standing. Under normal conditions, the track was very well marked in both up & down directions with orange triangles, it was just the storm damage that upset things, & we often had to search around for the correct way down. However, if we had just followed Finn, he would’ve led us down the correct way at all times. It really was uncanny how he knew where the track was, although Dermot had him down there a few months ago, so maybe he was remembering it from then.
We eventually made it…
Nearing the end of a difficult decent (Eleanor pic and caption)

Nearing the end of a difficult decent (Eleanor pic and caption)

…back out onto the Racemans Track, & then back to the junction that leads down to the Silverstream crossing onto the Powder Ridge track, where we wanted to check out some trees that were down across the track, with a view to taking chainsaws in to remove them. From there it was back across the bottom weir, & back to the cars.
The day turned into a real adventure, with the climb down North Coal, but everybody seemed pleased that they made it ok, although one  [who shall not be named !] took a tumble off the track at one point, into the scrub below the track surface. No damage was done, except to their pride, which was a relief to all party members. – Ken.
9. 7/11/2001 Bob H, Winifred, George

8. 29/4/2009 Rollinson Road. Picnic Area. Trig Q. North Coal Creek Track. Racemans. Weir. Rain Gauge Spur. Rollinson Track. Elbow. Rollinson Road. Leaders: Ian, Glenice.

Only five of us ventured. Dry for a start before the mist descended.
Pupit Rock hidden in mist. Ken's watch.

Pupit Rock hidden in mist. Ken’s watch.

Lip of lookout.Cuppa time.

Lip of lookout. Cuppa time.

Light rain as we got lower down. Heavier on Racemans. Odd break on Rain Gauge Spur until heavy soaking mist towards top.
Doug (rather wet) nearing top.

Doug (rather wet) nearing top.

George sans parka. Looking drier than he really was.

George sans parka. Looking drier than he really was.

We ended up fairly wet and glad to get back back down Rollinson road to car. – Ian.

7. 17/9/2008. Access Road, Picnic area, North Coal, Raingauge Spur. Hard. Leaders: George, Ken.

6. 27/7/2005 Rollinson Road. Elbow. Rollinson Track. Turn off down to Rain Gauge Spur. Leaders: George, Dorothy S

View from Raingauge Spur

View from Raingauge Spur

5. 1/11/1999 Silverstream Weir, Raingauge, Elbow, Raceman’s Track. Leaders: Margaret D

4. 17/8/1994. Silverstream Weir, Raceman’s Elbow. Medium. Leaders: Bob H, Peg C, Frances, Jack R

3. 28/4/1993. Silverstream Weir, Elbow, Raceman’s Track. Two groups. Medium or Easy. Leaders: Bob H, Les W, Diana, Joan A.

2. 1/5/1991 Elbow – Swampy – Raceman. Steep parts. Harder. Alternate route for some. Leaders: Mary McG, Daphne, Bob, Barbara McC

1. 11/1988 Leader: Peg C

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Jan 24 2018

Spiers Road, Davies, McGouns Creek Extension

Published by under Trampers

Click Ben Rudd Article for background information.
Click Pineapple and Flagstaff walk for background information.
Antony Hamel in his Dunedin Tracks and Trails book has interesting information on the “Snowy Mountain Track” under his Spiers Road entry.
3. 24/1/2018. Trampers. Wakari Road, Davies Track, Flagstaff Walkway, Spiers Road Track, Wakari Road. M. Leader: Helen.

Tramp report.

 13 hardy trampers set off from the carpark and headed to the  bike tracks park in Wakari Road.
Started badly with the leader (me) taking the wrong tack. However quickly rectified and onto the correct one. It wound its way up to the top onto a gravel road and along to the start of the Davies Track.
As was 10am we had our morning tea there.

Morning tea at start of Davies Track. (Helen pic and caption.)

One of our nameless men accidently left his pole there and got it back at the end. Up the track we went which wound round in places  and steeper in parts. Ross Davies whose Grandfather developed the track took a turn at leading. Was very appropiate. Ended up on the Pineapple track

Group on the Pineapple track (Helen pic and caption.)

and after some rest time made out way to the top for our lunch stop.

Lunch at the top and views over Dunedin. (Helen pic and caption.)

On the way up passed various people and in particular a young lady who almost made the male members fall off the track. 4 tummy piercings I was told and a lovely figure. Made their day.
After lunch we went down a bit till we got to the Speirs Road track. Down through the tussock and flax some bits quite steep.Some grasdy areas as the gorse had been cut. Lots of markers except in one spot but we soon found our way to the road after passing two horses with a lovely baby. From there we wound our way round two streets back onto Wakari Road and along to the cars. Altogether we walked 10.8kms and I would grade it medium to hardish. Most people had not done this circut before so was very enjoyable.
 Coffee at Blackstone ended our day.  Helen.

2. 20/11/2013. Trampers. Wakari Road, Davies Track, Flagstaff Walkway, Pineapple Track, McGouns Creek Extension.

We started at the top of Tanner Road. We went west along a 4WD track and turned up into Davies Track. The track through the bush was average condition. We heard mainly bell birds. At the top of the bush was where we had our morning tea. The track from this point on was through tussock and flax. The higher we got on this track, the harder it was to find. The last two or three minutes we lost the track completely. At the flat stone which generally indicates the top of the track, Neil built a small cairn of rocks there.
Then we went west along Flagstaff walk, and across a short track to the Fire Break. Then we turned right along this track to the top of the Pineapple track. By this time we had seen three other groups in the same area. We turned down the Pineapple Track, and just before heading into the bush we stopped for lunch, with a light breeze and in the sun.
Carried on down to the junction of the Pineapple and McGouns. Went south on McGouns with its steps, bridges and boardwalks to the bottom with the seats around the cairn.
Back along the 4WD track to the cars.
We met one other group plus one Botanist who was very interested in the area as such. He obviously comes from England, by his accent. – Heb.

1. 11/11/2009. Trampers. Wakari Road, Spiers Road, Flagstaff Walkway, Davies, McGouns Creek Extension. Leaders: Ian, Ken.
For variation we parked the cars at the north end of Wakari Road and street-walked from there to Spiers Road via Gilkison and Salmond Streets, critiquing gardens on our way.
Up Spiers Road, over the first stile, through gorse and broom recently cleared, thank goodness, then out on a paddock bypass where we stopped for our cuppa.
Cuppa View

Cuppa View. (Ian pic and caption.)

 

Then up through more scrub, open but gorsed paddock following the white posts, temporarily onto the road past the communication tower and Ben Rudd’s stone dyke.
Route past transmission tower

Route past transmission tower. (Ian pic and caption.)

A little further and it was over another stile and through some dense scrub that could do with a pruning, through another gate up and into the waretah posted route that struck to the right and led on up to the Flagstaff Walkway.

Approaching stile. Ken, Ria.

Approaching stile. Ken, Ria. (Ian pic and caption.)

Bivvy just NE of Flagstaff trig. Ken, Sabina, Ria

Bivvy just NE of Flagstaff trig. Ken, Sabina, Ria. (Ian pic and caption.)

Near the end of the Walkway we turned off down the Davies Track. The good bit about going down rather than up was that we were able enjoy the views, and later, the lovely woodland vista. At the bottom, we lunched at the Dunedin City Forestry  2006 Plantings Centennial stone cairn plaque seating before making our way down the road and through the McGouns Creek Track Extension back to the cars. – Ian.

Track interest on McGoun extension

Just a bit of interest on McGouns Creek Track Extension. (Ian pic and caption.)

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Jan 24 2018

Jim Freeman and Ben Rudd

Published by under Trampers

Distance from car-park: 16 km.

3. 24/1/2018. Hikers. Bull Ring, Where Flat Road, Jim Freeeman,Ben Rudd, Flag Staff, Bull Ring. M. Leaders: Judy, Dawn.

Route map, courtesy Ian.

27 hikers gathered at the car park, but this number soon diminished to 26 as one member collapsed before we even started.  (He is okay). Two others waited to provide assistance, leaving 24 of us to head for the Bull Ring.

Here five opted to do a shorter trip to the summit and back, while the remaining 19 set off down the road to the Possum Busters turn-off.  This was an easy, half-hour, down-hill stroll, mostly in the shade of the trees.

Morning tea was had just inside the track, …

Morning tea break at start of Possum Busters. (Kevin pic.)

… and then we headed for the Jim Freeman turn-off and the long, slow, hot climb up to the Ben Rudd shelter.  With frequent stops for water and breath, this took just over an hour.  Not bad under the conditions experienced!  We were all glad to be in the shelter of the bush and even gladder to emerge and collapse at the shelter for a long leisurely lunch break.

Lunch at Ben Rudd. (Kevin pic.)

The two good Samaritans met us here, having come up the fire-break track and down to the shelter.  They informed us that the patient was okay and that the other five were on their way to the summit and would head straight back down.

After lunch it was up to the fire-break, …

Coming out onto fire-break. (Kevin pic.)

Junction of Fire Break and Ben Rudd tracks. (Kevin pic.)

… and another split, with nine heading straight down to the cars, and the rest taking the track towards Swampy and then around and up (again!) to the Flagstaff summit.  It was slightly misty with a welcome cooling breeze, but the views were great, and we enjoyed the leisurely descent to the cars.  A good number then enjoyed a social hour at Topiary.

The decision to do this trip in reverse made sense, as it avoided the long hot climb up the road at the end, and also meant that most of the climbing was in the bush. – Judy

2. 19/4/2017. Hikers. Bull Ring, Ben Rudd, Jim Freeman, Whare Flat Road return. M. Jennifer and Adrienne.

Seven ‘not-so-young-and-not-feeling-fit’ members decided on a shorter(?) version of the day’s trip.  While the others went up the fire-break track, we opted for the track to Flagstaff summit,with great views across the Taieri and then the city before the cloud came down.  Morning tea was had sheltering in the rocks just past the summit,

(Judy pic.)

before following the track down over rocks and through mud to the junction with the fire-break.  It was cold pushing into the wind and we were glad to reach the Ben Rudd turn-off and head down into the bush where it was more sheltered. (We could hear the main party somewhere down the Jim Freeman track below). The picnic shelter was much appreciated for a longish lunch as it was a bit wet outside.

(Judy pic)

Glimpse of end of six seater above Ben Rudd Shelter. (Ian pic and caption.)

View from the six-seater. Ben Rudd shelter roof top. (Ian pic and caption.)

The climb back to the firebreak was quickly dealt with and the descent to the Bull Ring was uneventful – almost.  (Chris explored a ditch quite closely at one point).  It seems we walked as far if not further than the main group – not sure how! – Judy.

1. 24/9/2008. Trampers. Booth Road, Jim Freeman, McQuilkin, Moon Track. Medium. Leaders: Ria, Hazel.

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Jan 17 2018

Post Office Creek, Reid’s Station

Published by under Trampers,Year round

 No. 27 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “Mahinerangi – Post Office Creek. J Shaw. Year round.”
Impassable gorse-infestation beyond old Waipori School building (aft 2008).
33 km from car park..
15. 17/1/2018. Trampers. Post Office Creek. Leader: Jill.

Route map, courtesy Keith.

13 trampers met at Reid’s woolshed on Mahinerangi Road.  We walked down the hill to Post Office creek, and had morning tea at the “camp” before taking the track through gold mine sluicings to the top end of Lake Mahinerangi – a very low lake today!  After viewing the old Waipori school (which had been moved to this site to use as a musterer’s hut before Waipori village was drowned) …

School inspection. The “old” Waipori School moved to Post Office Creek before the raising  of Mahinerangi. (Phil pic and caption.)

… we backtracked about 1 km and shortly after went up a very steep stock lane …

Onwards and upwards to the trig. (Phil pic and caption.)

… and lunched by the trig there, enjoying expansive views of the area.

Trig A4GT -618 m altitude. (Phil pic and caption.)

We continued up the farm track towards the back of the Maungatuas – the intention had been to look over to Waihola, but it was decided that was a bit far on this occasion!  It was an easy return down hill to the bridge over Post Office creek – and to our cars.

 

Jill proudly displaying the new charging station for e bike travellers. (Phil pic and caption.)

An 18.5 km tramp enjoyed by all. – Jill.

14. 7/5/2014. Both. Reid homestead, Verter Burn to Post Office Creek and old school buildings. Leaders: Ken and Peter.

GPS

iPhone GPS distance: 12.1 km. Garmin stats: We walked 12.9km; Moving ave 4.3km/hr; Moving time 2h 58mins; Climbed 342mtrs; Max elevation 572mtrs. Allow a further km or two for the pedometer distance recorders, and then pick the figure that suits you!

21 of us parked in the Reid’s homestead backyard and made our way through one or two fences down to a bridge over the Verter Burn (near ‘1’ on the map) for morning tea.

Morning tea at Verter Burn crossing. (Heb pic, Ken caption)

Morning tea at Verter Burn crossing. (Heb pic, Ken caption)

We followed a road on the stream’s true left, which begs the question as to where originated the pond with its beautiful reflection on our left. (About ‘2’ on map.)

Reflection

Reflection

Between 3 and 4 on the map, is where we approached the Verter Burn ford, into which we were to plunge later, but at this stage we swung off to our left to make our way through early gold-sluiced cliffs (8/4 on map) to finally cross the Post Office Creek and arrive at (5) the former Waipori School building (as reported to the writer) of the one-time but now submerged Waipori Township.

 

Waipori Township

The Township of Waipori. The valley is now flooded and the town site is inundated. Photograph taken in 1890 by Charles Kerr.

We climbed the steep hill alongside the Post Office Creek’s true left to skirt on our right a forestry of densely branched trees  (larches? [and unpruned!] with a scattering of eucalypt among them) for a lunch where the forestry road levelled out at the top (6).

Then it was back down to the school building and out to the aforementioned ford, which this time we crossed with variously successful attempts in keeping feet dry, (but mostly wet).

Beyond that, was the further challenge of the BIG CLIMB, of un-fond older members’ memory. A taranaki gate at its top was new to us, but Neil successfully unscrambled its complexity. Three more paddocks and gates took us out to the Mahinerangi Road ( 11) and along it to the homestead (12.1) again.

At Outram, the majority of the (now well-established) coffee club socialised at the Wobbly Goat, …

 

Apres-tramp coffee at Outram

Apres-tramp coffee at Outram

although some betook themselves to the No 8 w Herbs cafe across the road. And that’s it. – Ian.

13. 28/11/2007. Trampers. Post Office Creek, fishermen huts return. Skyline track was closed on the day. Working on roads, trees. Easy. Leaders: Bill & Pat.
The day was fine and not too hot for
13 of us to tramp the Lake Mahinerangi water-race track to the fishermen huts. We had morning tea at the Post Office Creek Old School.
Tea Break

Tea Break. Hazel, Wendy, Doug, George, Ken, Shirley, Pat, Joyce, Arthur L

Immediately beyond that, the leaders had found for us the clearest approach to the larch forest that borders the lake, the tussock and bog being now badly infested with gorse. A leisurely lunch in the sun at the fishing huts and the return back. The Verter Burn barring the way in and out, as always, inspired a variety of creative crossing techniques, from direct plunging through the water boots and all, to bare feet, to plastic bags over boots and even to gumboots carried in.
Crossing

Crossing techniques. Abe (bare feet), Peter, Pat (getting plastic bags), Doug (bags), Barbara and Wendy (boots on rocks), Arthur (gumboots)

The long hill climb back out of the Verter Burn gets no easier with age, but all agreed it was another good day out. – Ian

Back at cars. Pat, Barbara, Abe, Peter, Ken, Wendy

Back at cars. Pat, Barbara, Abe, Peter, Ken, Wendy

12. 8/11/2006. Trampers. Post Office Creek. Medium. Leaders: Ian, Doug M
11. 18/5/2005. Both. Post Office Creek. Leaders: Doug J, Bill M, Joyce S, Lesley G
10. 29/10/2003 Forestry roads return. Leaders:
Hut

Crib by the ford. Bob Peter Arthur Barbara Who? Molly

Crss

Crossing Verter Burn. Peter Who? Molly

gate

The gate beyond Verter Burn.

School. Arthur H Bob Peter Arthur L

School. Arthur H Bob Peter Arthur L

Art

Lunch stop. Arthur & Barbara on a tea break on forestry road back out.

9. 25/4/2002 Leaders: Joyce S Shirley, Wendy B
8. 30/1/2002. Post Office Creek. Medium. Leaders: Joyce, Bob H, Donny.
7. 25/4/2001. Post Office Creek. Leaders: Joyce, Shirley McN, Wendy.
6. 5/4/2000. Post Office Creek. Leaders: Joyce, Bill McL, Nancy.
5. 26/5/1999. Post Office Creek. Leaders: Joyce, Nancy, Patricia.
4. 26/8/1998. Post Office Creek. Leaders: Joyce, Pat.
3. 4/2/1998. Post Office Creek to Huts and return from Robert Reids. Leaders: Denise, Ria L, Nel K.
2. 30/4/1997. Post Office Breek (sic) to huts round trip. (Robert Reids). Leaders: Eric and Dot, Joan H.
1. 8/4/1992. Post Office Creek – off Mahinerangi Road. Average. Leaders: Hartmann, Ted, Barbara M, Mary M

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Jan 17 2018

Chain Hills-Friends Hill Tramps

Published by under Hikers

No. 102 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “Friends Hill Chain Hills Year Round”
Saddle Hill Hotel

37. 17 Jan 2018. Friends Hill Road. M. Leaders: Jay and Jan.

Route Map, courtesy Ian, not including racecourse walk.(Ian pic and caption.)

We parked at the Wingatui Racecourse. From there 23 hikers set out in very pleasant temperatures for a trek up Friends Hill Road

Road (Clive pic and caption.)

to the top gate where we stopped for morning tea.

morning tea. (Clive pic and caption.)

We then set off for a walk round farmland with views over the  Taieri.  We made our way to a little cottage that was first built about 15 years ago as a B & B but was never completed inside.

A surprising substantial unfinished cottage. (Ian pic and caption.)

Unfortunately the door didn’t do its job properly so the starlings made good use of the free accommodation leaving behind a carpet of their own making!!!

From there we carried on this farmland which backs on to Invermay to a track through a stand of Manuka trees and then made our way to our lunch spot which was at the home of tramper, Janine Hearn who kindly said we could sit on her deck, enjoy the views and walk around her lovely garden.

A friendly tramper who lives on Friends Hill said we could use her back garden for lunch – Thanks Janine. (Clive pic and caption.)

 After lunch we headed back to the cars and five of us did a circuit of the racecourse and the rest opted to go for coffee at Blackstone.  – Jay and Jan

36. 2 Aug 2017  Both. Fairfield to Friends Hill. M.  Leaders: Keith and Shona.

It was drizzly and cold as we gathered at the Bush Rd car park.

After considerable discussion 20 people caught the bus …

What does the Taieri Recreational Tramping Club do and a wet cold winters day – They catch a bus and head for the hills! (Clive pic and caption.)

… to Fairfield, where further discussion occurred before Keith led the group along and up Flower St to the morning tea stop in the trees.

Route Map, courtesy Ian. Remembered to start it only at morning tea stop! so add 1 km from Flower St bus stop. Tunnel diversion for the “8” added 3 km. Do your own math for your total.

We headed up the track to Chain Hills Road where we met Janine and her little dog Rocky.

After about an hour we made it to the top of Chain Hills Road that was covered in mist with constant rain. (Clive pic and caption.)

By then the drizzle had eased and after the first downhill, …

Among the gum trees on the descent of Chain Hills. (Clive pic and caption.)

… 8 went [yet further! – Ed] down with Janine to inspect the Wingatui tunnel …

Eight of the more intrepid trampers branched off to view [& walk! – Ed] the old [800m – Ed.] railway tunnel [end to end, return! – Ed.].  Several found the novel way down [the first track – Ed.] by sitting down in the mud (unintentionally)! (Clive pic and caption.)

… and the rest negotiated the muddy track, climbed the stile and moved into Janine’s home to eat lunch. (Thanks, Janine.)

As we left, the 8 appeared [back up! – Ed.] over the stile and we all meandered back to Mosgiel, 7 having coffee at Blackstone.The remainder had disappeared (?) home for coffee, showers or even lunch for some. – Keith and Shona.

35. 19 Jul 2017. Trampers. Chain Hills. Leader: M. Helen.

A nice tramp today. Starting from Gladstone Rd and walking up hill over the top of the motorway. Turned onto Chain Hill Road. Found a nice spot for our morning tea on the top of a hill overlooking Mosgiel.

Morning tea. (Helen pic and caption.)

View from top of inversion layer over Mosgiel. (Helen pic and caption.)

The 12 of us then proceeded along the ups and downs along to the end. Turning left over the stile and the down through the paddocks to Friends Hill Rd. Down to the racecourse where we sat in luxury in the grandstand for our lunch.

Lunch. (Helen pic and caption.)

Chen a leisurely walk along Gladstone Rd back to our cars. Coffee for 9 of us at Blackstone’s. Lovely day and a nice 12.2km tramp. – Helen.

34. 10/5/2017. Friends Hill, Chain Hills, Gladstone Road. M. Clive, Jay and Jan.

Nike app route map, courtesy Ian.

Autumn on the Taieri.   One of those Southern days of sunshine found an intrepid band of hikers (16) setting out from Wingatui racecourse to walk up Friends Hill and then across country to Chain Hills Road.   The going to start with was steep and a challenge for some,  but then it came to the stile to get onto the public pathway to Chain Hills Road; the step up to stile was about a meter and made for more limber people.   Well all rose to the challenge and made it over the stile to the sheep pens at the top of the hill where we rested for morning tea …

Morning tea. (Ian pic and caption.)

… and watched the fog in the valley roll away.    By now the temperature had risen to the promised 17 degrees and jumpers and fleecy jacket were shed to climb the next couple of hills to Chain Hills Road.   It was then we found that the first stile was just a taster for the next two stiles that were very high and over barbed wire.    Some gentleman from years past laid down his coat so that the ladies did not snare their stocking on the barbed wire. [’twas the reporter! – Ed.]    We gained Chain Hills Road by 11 o’clock so it was a nice walk along the ridge line to arrive above Mosgiel just before midday and a spot to sit and eat lunch.

Lunch. (Ian pic and caption.)

A herd of friendly cows watched from across the road and then when they realized we were not there to feed them showed their opinion in that unique bovine manner – pats all round.

Thanks for the view too, Clive, as well as all the above. (Clive pic, Ian caption.)

The walk off Chain hills had the leader focused on road safety and the safest way to negotiate Morris Road (a busy road), down to Quarry Road.   Then it was along the flat back to Wingatui to pick up the cars for afternoon tea and Blackstones cafe.   I think we got a suntan on the way! – Clive.

33. 18/5/2016. Flower Street, Friends Hill, Wingatui, Car Park. M. Leaders: Keith and Shona.
Hikers' Route.

Hikers’ Route. Morning Tea stop in rain at about 1 km. Lunch in sun at 6 km. Coffee at 10.6 km.

18 Went by bus from outside the Mosgiel Post Office, arriving Flower St, Fairfield about 9.30 a.m.

Wandered up to the top of Flower St to have morning tea in the gum trees, as there was still drizzly rain falling.

Rain eased and we progressed over the stile and up the grass track, exiting onto Chain Hills Rd. After turning right, followed it to the end. Negotiated the stile there safely and followed the fence line down, up, and around, …

Green Island(?) from Flower Street. (Sharyn pic.)

Green Island from a ‘down’ paddock. (Sharyn pic.)

Wingatui from Friends Hill. (Sharyn pic)

Wingatui from above Friends Hill. (Sharyn pic)

… eventually exiting onto Friends Hill Rd.

Walked to Wingatui Race Couse for lunch, where there were toilets and dry seats in the grandstand for the rain had stopped. Made our way down Wingatui Rd, through track, across Haggart Alexander Drive, down Green st to end at Blackstone Cafe for a coffee. – Shona and Keith.

32. 11/6/2014. Chain Hills, Flower Street. M. Leaders: Pam, Dawn.
GPS of route

GPS of route. Cars parked foot of Coalstage Rd, Morris Rd overpass, Chain Hills Rd, Flower St, Kennedy Rd, Walkway, Main Rd, Park by Fairplay St, Main Rd, Saddleview Pl, Underpass, Saddle Hill Rd, Coalstage Rd again. Distance: 8.93 km; Fastest 4.78 kph; Slowest 3.73 kph.

Pam and Dawn led us, thirty strong this trip, on a route largely familiar to most, but a little less so to this reporter. We took the SH1 overpass, stretched out indian-file, making quite a picture no doubt to motorists passing underneath, to judge by the horn toots we got.
Bridge

Overpass. (John pic)

Down Morris Road to turn sharply up Chain Hills Road.

We ‘morning-teaed’ at the red spot on the map between kilometer marks two and three on the GPS map.
Panorama

The customary morning tea spot on Chain Hills Road. (John pic)

A little further on as we took the Chain Hills Road right fork taking us down to Fairfield. The top of Flower Street lay through private land, guarded by locked gates provided with not-very-accommodating styles.

Style queue

The style at the Flower Street top locked gate. (John pic)

Further down again (or was it higher up?) we came across this mock farmyard, complete with tractor, water wheel, cow, et al.

Glove

A rubber glove udder for a tinny cow. (John pic)

Down in the paved part of Flower Street we were taken with a letter box making industry operating out of a private property.

Letter Boxes to order

Letter Boxes made to order.

Then it was into Kennedy Road, out through a walkway to emerge on the Main Road and on to lunch at a park abutting Fairplay Street.
Collage

Collage of lunch groups (John collage)

From there it was further up the Main Road, then to be pleasantly surprised by the leaders taking us not via the customary Morris Road but by Saddleview Terrace and through the SH1 underpass and up, very steeply up, Saddle Hill Road to Coalstage Road. A short distance along and we stopped to admire Janice’s house and to farewell her down the driveway. Then it was just on down back to the cars.

A good day out, despite an icy edge to the light wind at times. Thank you, leaders. – Ian.
31. 12/3/2014. Hikers. Friends Hill. Leaders: Fred, Elaine.
We parked our cars  up Quarry Rd to the right of the overbridge on the north side of the
Saddle Hill.
25 fit and healthy Hikers started up over the bridge and up Chains Hill Rd.
We were met early on by a very fit brown lab dog who followed us all the way …
Dog

Dog (Pic John)

… to the morning tea stop.

Morning tea

Morning tea. (John, pic.)

It sat down and waited while we ate and sipped our tea and water.

Continuing on, we arrived at the Chain Hills Rd end. I thought the dog would have gone home. The DOG sat down and waited till we all leaped over the stile (some climbed carefully).
The DOG then left and went home.
Lunch was at a cosy spot …

Sheltered lunch spot

Sheltered lunch spot (John, Panorama pic.)

… out of the wind.
Fred gave out chocs.
The ground was even and not at all muddy. The views are worth stopping for to catch a breath.
When we reached Gladstone Rd North, we walked to the Wingatui Hall where we had cunningly had a car parked for those who needed a lift back  to the cars up saddle hill. Several Hikers took up the offer and Fred transported them up to their cars. We continued down Gladstone Rd North to the z station, then up quarry rd back to the cars.
Several hikers took up the offer of going for coffee to Wals at the end of the day. (Can’t guess who. – Ed)
A very hot day enjoyed by all. – Elaine.
30. 11/12/2013. All.  Friends Hill, Chain Hills. End of Year finger-food lunch at Wingatui Hall. Leaders: Peter and Wendy.
GPS of route

GPS of route from Friends Hill to Chains Hill road, return.

Our leaders had to change our end of year location. Berwick Camp had been already booked. Where to plan the tramp? A brilliant choice. From the Hall, up Friends Hill to the stile and across the poled route to the Chain Hills road end for morning tea. It was the first time this reporter remembers doing the route UP from ‘Friends’ to “Chain’. He discovered how much easier it is doing the reverse route DOWN. The trampers among us were not disappointed either. Bravo, leaders. Our shared lunch was  another successful end-of-year treat. Thanks to Bruce for leading us in a sing-a-long. Happy holidays. – Ian.
29. 28/3/2012. Hikers. Chain Hills. Leader: Graham.
28. 23/11/2011. Hikers. Fairfield circuit, Fairfield. Leaders: Graham, Wendy.
27. 29/6/2011 Friends Hill. Leaders: Fred, Elaine.
Start Carpark at Saddle Hill overbridge,
to end of Chain Hills road,
across farmland …
Single

“Single File please people.” (As if we could do anything else.)(Bob pic and caption)

Downhill

Pleasant downhill walking. (Bob pic and caption)

What

Lunch queue? A good spot actually with shelter, sun, and log seats laid on. (Bob pic and caption)

Fred

Fred jealously guards his chocolates. (Bob pic and caption)

… down to Friends’ Hill Road.
Good leadership – except that Quasimodi challenged for the leader’s role, …
Quasi

Quasimodo joins the group. (Bob pic and caption)

… the leader threw down the gauntlet (ie orange jerkin), and the usurper reigned, …

gauntlet

Quasimodo surges into the lead. (Bob pic and caption)

…  and misled the people at one point,
at which the the old guard led the errant followers correctly.
Along Gladstone Rd, and
up Quarry Rd to cars.
We started with 18 and with defections reduced to 6!!
A lovely walk. Great weather. – Bob.
26. 26/1/2011. Hikers. Chain Hills Road, Flower Street, Fairfield. Easy+. Leaders: Frank and Lesley.
Some 18 of us (the number varied a little at points in the walk) set out from the bridge carpark on Saddle Hill on a fine and calm morning, continued up Chain Hills Road with morning tea at the “potato planter” (pictured),

Morning tea by the potato planter. (Bob pic and caption)

Ditto. (Bob pic and caption)

across a small piece of farmland by the reservoir (where there was the possibility of a confrontation with a cattle beast

Does he want to have a beef with us? (Bob pic and caption)

– but avoided because of the amiable nature of all on two or four feet ) and so onto Flower St, Fairfield, and past several novel garden ornaments, one of which is pictured.

Neill admonishes the little people. (Bob pic and caption)

Lunch stop was at the park with shelter from the hall wall against the strengthening wind, and chocolates from Fred, and the last part of the round-trip was up the old main road (Morris Rd) in gathering drizzle. A frequent topic of conversation was the ailments (and recovery) of various people present or absent, and the name of Don who used to come out with us but whom we haven’t seen for some time and whose name eluded several. [Donny Hunter? – Ed] ( I am reliably informed that there are no longer “senior moments”, but rather “intellectual pauses”.) Two new faces, Jim and Betty, came to ‘try us out’. Thanks to Frank and Leslie for leadership. – Bob M
25. 9/6/2010 Hikers. Chain Hills Road, Flower Street, Fairfield. Easy+. Leaders: Frank and Lesley.

I guess that the residents themselves are their best critics. (Bill pic and caption)

24. 22/4/2009 Hikers. Chain Hills Road, Flower Street, Fairfield. Easy+. Leaders: Frank and Lesley.
23. 28/5/2008. Hikers. Overbridge, Chain Hills, Fairfield. Easy. Leaders: Frank and Lesley
22. 23/1/2008. Hikers. Chain Hills to Fairfield. Easy. Leaders: Frank and Lesley.
21. 27/9/2006. Hikers. Chain Hills, Fairfield. Easy. Leaders: Eleanor W, Dot T.
20. 17/8/2005. Hikers. Overbridge, Chain Hills, Fairfield. Leaders: Margaret S, Carmel.
19. 28/7/2004 Fairfield Tavern, Chain Hills, Fairfield. From over-bridge. Leaders: Les W, Ray, Mary M.
Dunedin from Mount Grand

Dunedin from Mount Grand

Mosgiel from Friends Hill

Mosgiel from Friends Hill

18. 16/7/2003. Hikers. Overhead Bridge, Flower Street, Fairfield. Easy. Leaders: Lance and Lois.
17. 19/2/2003. Chain Hills Circuit from Fairfield Tavern. Medium. Trampers. Leaders: Donny, Graham.
16. 19/6/2002 Alt. Winter walk from Fairfield Tavern. road walk. Leaders: Joyce S, Eleanor
15. 29/5/2002. Chain Hills Circuit from Fairfield Tavern. Medium. Leaders: Donny, Wendy, Graham.
14. 23/5/2001 Friends Hill. Leaders: Bev McI, Mary M, Val
13. 26/7/2000. Fairfield via Flower Street from carpark. Leaders: Lesley and Frank, Margaret D.
12. 24/5/2000 Fairfield Tavern, Chain Hill Circuit. Leaders: Ronny, Irene, Hazel
11. 17/5/2000. Chain Hills – Circuit. From Fairfield Tavern. Leaders: Donny, Irene, Hazel
10. 10/6/1998. Wingatui, Friends Hill, Chain Hills. Leaders: Peg C, Molly.
9. 1/3/1998 Friends Hill, Chain Hills. Leaders: Margaret D, Lance, Lois
8. 25/6/1997. Maurice Road, Fairfield, Chain Hills. Leaders: Betty B, Judith D, Mary Y.
7. 20/11/1996. Friends Hill and beyond. Meet at Wingatui Hall. Leaders: Mary Y, Betty B, Judith D.
6. 1/11/1996 Friends Hill, Chain Hills. Leaders: Mary Y, Betty B
5. 19/6/1996. Chain Hills – Fairfield Tavern for lunch – Return Main Road. No fare. (Alternative to Pole Line) Leaders: Daphne, Evelyn M, Colleen.
4. 16/8/1995. Saddle Hill, Old Brighton Road, Taieri Lookout, Chain Hills, Fairfield. Medium. Leaders: Bob Q, Dot and Nelson, Molly.
3. 16/9/1992. Wingatui Friends Hill Rd Halfway Bush Rd Three Mile Hill Rd Dalziel Rd Brinsdon Rd return
2. 6/5/1992. Walk from Glasgow Street car park, Saddle Hill, Chain Hills, Wingatui. Easy. Leaders: Jack M, W Bathgate,
1. 9/8/1989. Wingatui Racecourse. Over the Hill. Easy+ Leaders: Betty, Molly, Ria.

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Jan 10 2018

Portobello, Clarks, Sheppards, McArthny, Varleys Hills

Published by under Trampers

Distance Portobello from car-park: 32 km.

Map of area

9. Trampers. Varleys Hill. M. Leader: Janine.

While the weather report was forecasting showers, my barometer just continued to climb towards ‘dry’ – so we had another rain free day which provided ideal conditions for our first tramp of the year .An eager 15 individuals set off from Portobello across farmland where we stopped for morning tea at an old milking shed site, allowing those mechanically minded to study remains.

Morning Tea. (Helen pic and caption.)

Continuing on we passed both live bunnies and dead ones! Then ventured back onto a gravel road leading us to Papanui Inlet,

Towards Papanui Inlet. (Helen pic and caption.)

such a busy piece of road – we stepped aside for one car! We detoured from the road into private farmland and began the uphill climb through the bush protected by a  QE2 covenant.

The traditional stone walls in this area are always amazing but the stone fortress around the top of Varleys Hill never ceases to astound all and constantly query ‘who and why?’ But dispite rigorous research into the history of this block of land and it’s history, present owners have been unable to answer these questions.

After lunch within this fortress overlooking the amazing views of Harbour Cone, Papanui Inlet. Hoopers Inlet and the Pacific ocean, most tried to detach bidi-bids from backpacks, socks, jerseys, gaiters etc. This proved a futile exercise as the tramp down the other side

Pretty Ragwort. (Helen pic and caption.)

of Varleys Hill proved to be a further tangle of this weed and most were unable to rid themselves of this attachment untill we reached the Hoopers Inlet Hall.

After another short road walk we cimbed up and over the ‘Leith’Track (I think thats what the sign referred to} back to Portobello.A lovely walk in mostly warm overcast conditions – covering just over 10 km – and finishing up at MacAndrew Bay for leisurely coffee/ ice cream and conversation. – Janine.

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8. 8/2/2017. Hikers. Portobello, Sheppards Road, Varleys Hill, Leith Track. M. Pam and Dawn.

Route map, courtesy Ian.

We parked the cars in Allans Beach Road.  33 people set off and 3 people went as far as they could cope and went back to Portobello for lunch.   We walked from Allans Beach Road to Hoopers Inlet and turned into Sheppard Rd where we  had morning tea on side of road.  We then walked along Sheppard Rd turning right at Papanui Inlet Road.   At Parkers property, 150 Papanui Rd, we walked up their driveway to start of track up to Varleys Hill.

Varleys Hill driveway. (Clive pic and caption.)

Quite a steep climb up to top where there was a lot of very large stones forming a circle.   We had lunch there …

Lunch among Varleys Hill biddibids. (Ian pic and caption.)

… and enjoyed  magnificent views of sea and hills.

Adrienne pic.

After lunch we went down through the track (heaps of biddi biddis that we had ben warned about) …

Finding the path. (Clive pic and caption.)

… to Hoopers Inlet Hall, where some group photos were taken.

Obligatory photo at Hoopers Inlet Hall. (Ian pic and caption.)

21 people went back to Portobello via the Leith track and 9 people chose to return walking back via Allans Beach Road.  We arrived back at Portobello at 2.30 where we enjoyed a coffee at the lovely café.   A very enjoyable day. – Dawn

7. 9/3/2016. Trampers. Portobello, Clarks, Sheppards and Varleys Hills. Medium. Leader: -.

Once again we had a very nice day for our tramp around Clarks – Varleys Hill at Portobello. And it was another opportunity to show this area to some who had not been there before.
This is not a long tramp, so the pace for the day was a bit slower than we normally travel at, but it does give time to absorb the scenery.
We had to fill-in a form for Brendon at the first gate, but after discussing this with him over the phone when I was seeking permission, it was no problem, & only took a minute to fill out the necessary bits. We then had morning tea in the normal place by the willows, & made our way up the hill past the “twisted” tree, & through the hard to open gate [ which thankfully was already open] at the top of the hill.

Scene of Portobello from Clarks Hill (Helen pic)

Scene of Portobello from Sheppards Hill (Helen pic)

On reaching Weir Rd. we travelled down here to Papanui Inlet, & along the road to the private driveway leading up to Varleys Hill. Here we stopped to retrieve an information sheet from the letterbox, that the owners had left for us. This sheet describes the work they have carried out, & some history of the property. I will forward this sheet to Ian for possible addition to the website.

Varleys Hill Information Sheet, Page 1

Varleys Hill Information Sheet, Page 1

Varleys Hill Information Sheet, page 2

Varleys Hill Information Sheet, page 2

Some made hard work of the climb up to the top “ring of stone” where we had lunch among the bidi bids !!

Lunch on Varleys (Helen pic)

Lunch on Varleys (Helen pic)

Hoopers Inlet from Varleys Hill (Helen pic)

Hoopers Inlet from Varleys Hill (Helen pic)

Then it was off down the other side of the hill following a very indistinct track, to the turn off through the bush, which leads down to the Hoopers Inlet Hall.
Another lengthy road walk followed, till we reached Leith track end which goes over the hill back to Portobello. We stopped at the top of this before going down to the cars.

Once back at the cars, it was decide to continue the “coffee club” tradition, by calling in at the Macandrew Bay cafe for a chat, before moving off home.

The day was enjoyed by all, & we only had one problem with one member using new boots, & getting a blister on a heel, which was ably seen to by our nursing member.

Walked 9.6km
4km/h
climbed 376mtrs. – Ken.

6. 23/4/2014. Trampers. Portobello, Clarks, Sheppards and Varleys Hills. Medium.
The tramp around Clarks, Varley Hill area is one I have now done quite a few times, but always enjoy, especially when the other members of the party have never been there before, which was the case on this occasion.
The weather was not looking good when I got up in the morning, it was raining gently, but as the day progressed it got somewhat better, & we had a fine day for our walk, with hardly any wind, & mild temperatures. The grass in the farm paddocks was a bit wet, but not too long so we all stayed dry the whole day.
We had morning tea in the willows on the first farm, & lunch at the top of Varleys Hill…

Lunch on Varleys Hill (Ken pic)

Lunch on Varleys Hill (Ken pic)

… in the ring of rocks, after having a good chat with the lady of the property before we climbed up through the bush to the top. Lunch was a bit early at 11: 40, but that gave use the option of getting back to the car early, or just loafing around to fill in the time. As it turned out, we did a bit of both, before we took off down the hill to the Hoopers Inlet Hall. Then it was the lengthy walk around the road to the track leading up & over the hill, back to Portobello, which we reached at about 12:50pm. This allowed us [ the No 2 coffee club ] to stop at MacAndrew Bay for our ‘fix’ & a chat before heading home. – Ken

5. 25/5/2011. Trampers. Portobello, Clarks, Sheppards and Varleys Hills. Medium.

GPS of clockwise-tramped route, courtesy Ken. Portobello, Clarks, Sheppards, Varley Hills and Leith track over saddle back to Portobello.

Looking over to Quarantine Point – again (v. below)

Mount Charles from Weir Road

A break on way

Returning from viewing plaque

Closer look at the letter boxes

4. 16/6/2010. Trampers. Portobello, Clarks, Sheppards and Varleys Hills. Medium. Leader: George

Looking out over Quarantine Point from Clarks Hill

Descent from Varleys Hill ending at Hoopers Inlet Hall

New plaque at Sheppards Road corner

Track sign of route over saddle to Portebello

Still going? Shed in Hereweka Street.

A local told us distant object on hill was a Buddhist Temple

3. 25/3/2009. Trampers. Portobello, Clarks, Sheppards, McArthny and Varleys Hills. Medium. Leaders: George, Lex
A pleasant, mild, windless day with clear views to both sides of the peninsula were ideal for the 6 who set out to conquer Varley’s Hill, etc.  We parked in the centre of Portobello and then followed Harington Pt Rd for a short distance before ascending lush paddocks (with a few good mushrooms) to skirt the slopes of Clarks and Sheppards Hills which provided good views to Port Chalmers at the morning tea stop.
Tea break. Sheppards Hill

Tea Break. Lex, Sabina, Ria, George

We crossed Weir Rd at its summit and headed towards McArthny Hill.  Inadvertent deviation led us to short-circuit the circumnavigation of said hill, (in other words, we took a shortcut) and leader George directed our paths east around the hill and down to Dick Rd on the Papanui Inlet.
Gate

Gate. Sabina, George, Ria, Lex

Turning right, we passed the Sheppard Rd turnoff, with George trying the mudflats as the tide was well out,
but soon becoming “an old stick-in-the-mud”, according to Bob.  We turned off into the driveway up to Varleys Farm.
Track

Varley’s Farm driveway. Ria, Sabina, Lex, George.

At the farmhouse, we had another debate about the route, which led to some getting to the summit easily and others, “biddibid and bracken bushbashing” to reach it. At the top is NZ’s own ‘stone circle’ a dry stone wall with a ‘gateway’. One imagines it would have been used as a sheep pen, but over lunch, the talk was of ancient barrows and tombs and mysterious rituals. The plaque on one of the stones stating it was a QE II National Trust Protected Open Space added no further explanation.
Varley's Hill

Papanui Inlet and Sandymount from Varley’s Hill

Stone wall

Lunch on Varley’s Hill. Ken, George, Ria, Sabina, Lex

A pleasant descent on the other side of the hill
Cone

Harbour Cone & reflection coming down from Varley Hill

(past a mysterious, bush-surrounded, irregularly-constructed platform that no one could explain) towards Hoopers Inlet Hall led us to Allans Beach Rd, passing the other end of Sheppard Rd and thence into Hooper’s Inlet Rd.
To conclude the tramp, we turned into a farm road by some picturesque letterboxes,
Boxes

Picturesque letter boxes and thence right again onto Leith Track (an old road perhaps an extension of Hereweka St) which took us over the hill to join the top end of Hereweka St again and so down to the cars.

Some great views, good terrain and interesting and varied scenes along the way.
Building

Scene en route

Thanks to George for getting the landowners’ permissions, and the leadership from Lex and George.  Bob M
2. 25/6/2008 Clarks, Sheppards and Varleys Hills. Leader: George
The scheduled tramp for the Hindon Pipe Line was cancelled due to 13cm of frozen snow in the area. Instead, under George’s leadership (co-leader Ria was too ill to come on the day), a small band of 5 trampers met at the foot of Hereweka St, Portobello for a previously perforce cancelled tramp. Here conditions were much milder than those up at the Pipe Line would have been, but there was still a cold northerly wind to wrap up against. We set off along the Harington Pt Rd for a short distance before turning up through a gate to skirt the slopes of Clarks and Sheppards Hills. A track further up led us through several gates. En route, we paused to admire the deeply furrowed trunk of a Ngaio tree, looking for all the world like a mass of thick entwining vines.
Plaited Ngaio trunk

Plaited Ngaio trunk

We eventually arrived at the summit of Weir Rd where McArthny Hill loomed directly ahead of us. George elected, for time’s and effort’s sake, to bypass that part of the tramp and take us down to Dick Rd on the Papanui Inlet. Turning right, we passed the Sheppard Rd turnoff and a short distance ahead reached the steep driveway up to Varleys Farm. We bypassed the farm up a track on the left stepped where necessary to reach the summit of Varleys Hill. Here we found a circular dry stone wall with a plaque on one of the stones stating it was a QE II National Trust Protected Open Space. We late lunched sheltered by wall and bush, enjoying spendid views all around.
Harbour Cone from Varley Hill

Harbour Cone from Varley Hill

Descending the other side of the hill we found ourselves at the Hoopers Inlet Hall
Hoopers Inlet Hall. George, Ian, Lex, Ken.

Hoopers Inlet Hall. George, Ian, Lex, Ken.

where we set off to walk along the Allans Beach Rd, passing the other end of Sheppard Rd.
It was here the highlight of the day occurred.
A cheeky grin (?) from a tagged seal.

A cheeky grin (?) from a tagged seal.

A frolicsome young seal swam up to us, reaching the stone wall of the road and looking right up at us. We remained there, fascinated at its twistings and turnings, for a considerable time.
It capped off its performance by steaming away across the water at a great speed, the water parting and streaming away on either side.
To conclude the tramp, we turned into a track roughly paralleling the sealed road turn-off to Portobello and on its left, which took us over the hill to join the top end of Hereweka St again and so down to the cars, passing a surprisingly well equipped Village Tourist Park and a sleek coastguard rescue vessel.

A great introduction to some Peninsula hills our club hasn’t experienced before. Thanks to George for getting the landowners’ permissions at a moments’s notice and providing this excellent alterative for the day. – Ian

1. 25/4/2008. Trampers. Portobello, Varleys Hill. Easy. Leaders: George, Ria.

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Jan 10 2018

North Taieri Church, Salisbury, Taieri River Lookout off Taioma Road

Published by under Hikers

Background information on Salisbury property
10. 10/1/2018 Hikers. Taieri River view lookout. E. Leaders: Doug and Ian.
Twenty-one Hikers turned out for the first tramp of the new year, parking the cars at the lay-by on Taioma Road beside the entrance  to the Taieri View Road. This tramp was to differ markedly from the last one we had done back in 1915.
First, a couple of the private forests along the forest road on the left had been ‘harvested’, as they say, the first one now replaced with paddocks.
Second, the former FWD track was now a road, much more heavily metalled and heavily dented by the double wheels of forest trucks carrying heavy loads.
And third, road’s end was now in the middle of the branch-and-trunk-strewn cleared second forestry. No longer a gentle grass-covered FWD track ending in a rough honeysuckle and gorse encroached track. A shock. A big shock.
Yes, the shocking new way of getting to the lookout was to have to pick our way through a debris of tangled branches down along a left-leaning bench-sort-of-slope that was marginalised by a messed-up fence line on  the right and a steep fall-off on the left.
The goal ahead of us was to be a line of small Manuka and gorse bush, a middle part of it dead. Just where the dead changed on its right to the dark green, the leaders knew to be the sturdy post at the end of a fence, alongside which was the track down through to the lookout. This they had found only after well over half an hour’s reconnoitring the previous week.
Seventeen of us reached the lookout unscathed by the sharp-ended broken branches we had to negotiate, with four electing, a short distance in, to prudently head back and wait for us near the safety of the road.

At the lookout, despite some reluctance to leave the wonder of the view,

Taieri Lookout. (Clive pic and caption.)

but it being still only eleven o’clock, we eventually turned back to retackle the cleared (??) forestry slope.

The hills denuded of pines made for heavy going in places (Clive pic and caption.)

This time, with leadership guidance no longer needed to find a way, a wonderful variety of routes back up to the road were found.

Back right up near road’s entrance, we stopped for lunch under power lines with the cleared area affording us a pleasant view.

Along the short distance of Taieri View Road, and out onto Taioma Road, and leaving our parked cars on our left, we headed down the road to a gate onto Salisbury property. We headed down through a couple of paddocks,

A walk down the hill with the Taieri Gorge railway in the background. (Clive pic and caption.)

the route getting steadily steeper until its very steepest part got us down to the relief of the flat. Many elderly knees didn’t enjoy that last part one bit.

A nice flat lane led us to the wonderful restored stone cottage where we stopped to again admire the beautiful work done to it both inside …

Glen Lyon Cottage inside(Clive pic)

Glen Lyon Cottage inside (Clive pic)

… and out.

Glen Lyon Cottage established 1862. (Clive pic and caption)

Then out to Wairongoa Road where two shuttle cars  ferried drivers back to their cars in the lay-by to allow everyone to return home, some by a coffee break en route.

The day was cloudy and not too hot. Just right.
The normal route would have both started and ended on Wairongoa Road, the tramp beginning with the steep climb through Salisbury paddocks to Taioma Road, morning tea half way up, and lunch at the lookout. All agreed however that through a car shuttle saving the Salisbury paddocks for just a return downhill journey and for a shorter first tramp of the year was the way to do it. – Doug and Ian.
9. 26/7/2017. Trampers.  Showgrounds, Taioma Rd, Taieri flood views. Leader: Eleanore.
Walked all but 17km and averaged 4.8km an hour.
We drove and parked at the Showgrounds.  Ten of us were eager to get out for a walk without rain.  We headed up Taioma road and had smoko at the bottom of the hill.  Then a steady uphill climb took us to the Taieri View sign, a few stops along the way were had to look at the flooding of the lower Taieri (which occurred after heavy rain on Friday and Saturday). Also, picking out landmarks and where some of us live on the Taieri.

Nice view over mosgiel. (Helen pic and caption.)

We turned left at the Taieri View sign, then veered left again onto a Forestry road that took us to where trees had recently been milled. Looking across farmland, down to the Taieri river, cleared forest and 4 goats grazing in the distance we enjoyed the vista while eating lunch.

Lunch. (Helen pic and caption.)

After lunch we walked back to the junction and decided to carry  on down the road that we veered off, where we were looking further down the Taieri towards Henley at the floods.

Water on the plains. (Helen pic and caption.)

Once we headed for home, it was down hill all the way to the cars.  We parked  back at the car park and strolled round to Blackstone where we enjoyed coffee and cake.
The weather was calm and mild, which made our outing most enjoyable. – Eleanore.

8. 2015 Aug 26. Hikers. North Taieri Church, Salisbury and Taieri Lookout. Leaders: Pam, Dawn.
GPS of route

GPS of route

Where to start with all the happenings in this report? Well, first, when the cars arrived at North Taieri Church some of the Brighton people failed to turn up. It transpired, as was later report, their car load turned back to just walk around Mosgiel on seeing the “Road Closed” Taioma Road notice. Twenty of us set of along and up…

The paddocks were as steep as ever.

The paddocks were as steep as ever.

…the Salisbury farm paddocks to emerge onto Taioma Road just above the zig-zag and stop for morning tea on the road edge,

Cuppa

Morning tea cuppa on Taioma Road in the ditch, sheltered from the wind.

nicely sheltered from the cold southerly.

Incident two. After we had trudged up the road to the Taieri View side road, we looked back to see a small group stopped back down the road. The leaders went back down to find that Peter B. was experiencing one of his very occasional breathless spells (his last one, this report recalls, was on Traquair, but that time he recovered to continue afresh again.) Cell phone arrangements were made for a one of the leaders’ spouse to drive up and take Wendy and Peter back down. This was satisfactorily achieved.

Incident three. John had driven up to meet us at the side road turn-off. But under the unwise earlier advice of this reporter, had parked just beyond the turn-off at the edge of a logginh-truck lay-by  area, but had been reprehended by a logging driver for possibly impeding their movements, so got his car neatly parked in the side road.

Incident four. Keith espied a cast sheep in the paddock over the road. Mastered the barbwire fence and righted the sheep which staggered, trotted, ran off. Bravo.

On up the road, into the forestry road

4WD

The track is wide and open for much of its way. (John pic)

and down,

Diversion

The 2013 snow dump’s legacy of fallen trees on the track forced us to to divert through the forestry occasionally. (John pic)

steadily down

Track. (John pic)

From the road end, taking the track down to the lookout rock. (John pic)

to the river look-out rock. The bold (reckless?) stepped out onto the large rock to admire the view, the timid (prudent?) stopped well back from the intimidating drop.

Lunch,

Lunch

A candid lunch pic a little bit up from the rock.

snugly tucked in among grass and gorse against the wind. The leaders shortened the lunch-stop for fear of approaching rain but it failed to eventuate. In fact, sunshine and the climb back out proved a even a bit over-warming.

Incident five. Back at Taioma Road, Mollie and George graciously accepted the invitation of a ride back in John’s car.

Incident six.. Trudging back down the Salisbury paddocks, someone remarked that Dot (of the returning car, alas) had intended sharing her big-birthday chocs with us. Sigh.

Next a stop at Mr McElwee’s beautifully restored cottage, an eye-opener for some of our newer members. Then out to the cars where we were found a cheerful Peter waiting to greet us, none the worse for his setback earlier. Relief all round! Then off to Topiary for some for their accustomed coffee fix.

A great day out, with Salisbury’s steep paddocks testing breathing on the way up and knees on the way down. A day full of interesting incidents. A tramp very well led by Pam and Dawn. A good day. – Ian.

7. 2013 Apr 3. Both. North Taieri Church, Salisbury and Taieri Lookout. Leaders: Fred, Ian.

 We started out from beside the North Taieri Church, numbering 20. We admired some black sheep along the way. Mollie pointed out that the hill ahead was Vaughan Hill, once owned by her late husband’s parents. We admired the restored stone cottage, of course. Mr McElwee had determined on everything being authentic to its old age, including …… donated from the Vaughan farm. We then set about climbing the hill ahead, this time via  a gentler track (only slightly) from around its back. At a water trough, well up the hill, we stopped for morning tea and to admire the view, and to increase our number by Lex arriving down from his car parked in Taioma Road. Light rain came on, and so did our parkas. By the time we arrived at the “No Exit” entrance to Taieri View Road we found our numbers had dropped to sixteen, five opting to seek car and home rather than carry on in the rain. On taking the forestry road turn-off, some found water off the wet grass soon got into  wet boots making for a gentle sloshing sound as they moved. But we carried on to successfully reach the Taieri River lookout, and return up that steep part o the track at its end to lunch under the shelter?? of some forestry pines. It was at this point that we had reached the dispiriting point for many. We found we had only  exchanged the fine rain outside for large forestry drops that soon soaked any part of us that was not already wet. And here any respect for the leadership vanished. It wasn’t too long before the leaders discovered numbers had now dropped to four, the rest having returned up the track to shorten what had turned into a miserable experience as quickly as possible. The leaders caught up briefly at Taioma Road, only to see the majority head off down to make a road-walk, regardless of traffic,  back to the cars. This left the leaders now with a group of only six, who returned back down through the Salisbury farm the way we had ascended, for a grand meet-up with those under their care back at the cars. So all’s well that ends well, perhaps. – Ian.
6. 2012 Jun 13. Trampers. North Taieri Church, Salisbury and Taieri Lookout.

GPS of route, courtesy Ken. We did the loop anti-clockwise. We did 16 km in all. A good day’s walk. Total altitude climbed: 500m.

Relying on Ria’s memory to guide us, 7 of us did the more extensive Salisbury walk,
which took us climbing, climbing to join the Taioma road at the very top.

Morning tea stop, halfway up the loop, on the right.

Then we had to make our way back around Taioma road to get back down to Taieri View Road. We tried to avoid the road, busy with fast, heavy rumbling logging trucks, but paddocks proved eventually too boggy.

Shortly into Taieri View Road, we stopped for a late lunch. At this point George didn’t want to go any further, so he and his car-load took the short way back to his car. The remaining trampers made their way on down the forestry track turn-off from Taieri View Road to the Lookout. The track was much more overgrown and forestry-shaded than when the writer remembered it. However this gave us good shelter from the blustery cold wind that made itself felt when we emerged out onto the Lookout.

 

Lester views the Taieri from the Lookout.

Smile please

An imaginative use of old tractor tyres on Salisbury near the end of our return

We were lucky with the weather, which held off till we reached the car. A good tramp for a cold-weather day. The tramp also had a sentimental side, as it was the last day Linzi was to be with us, before departing back home to Cornwall three days later, after tramping with us for a whole year. Farewell, Linzi. – Ian.

5. 2009 Apr 8. Hikers. Taieri View, Mount Allan Road. Medium. Leaders: Chris, Dot B.

Taieri View Rock

Taieri View Rock

4. 2008 Feb 27. Leaders: Bev.

A bit cloudy but still 15 hikers parked their cars in Taieri View Rd. and set off on a very pleasant hike along forestry roads and through the forest to another Taieri Lookout. We had our morning tea sitting on a grassy bank before we headed into the forest itself. Very enjoyable walking and only some fairly easy down and up grades to keep us from having it too easy. Got to the lookout area which was a big rock jutting out over the Taieri river. Great view of river and surrounding areas. By now the sun had come out so made it more pleasant for our lunch break which we enjoyed relaxing and taking in the view. Then the sun disappeared and it turned a bit cool and looked very much like it would rain in the very near future. So we set off back to the cars. We found a few interesting things

George by wrecked car

George by wrecked car

 

to look at and photograph for fun on the way. A goats skull and horns which made an appropriate photo for an ‘old nanny goat’! A rusty old car body which had to be sat in, also for the obligatory photo. A really lovely big bush of ripe blackberries, much enjoyed by those who took the time to pick and feast on them. A lonely little pansy, (not a petunia!), in the middle of some blackberries and long grass. George managed to knock over the post of the electric fence after holding it down for us to step across. Luckily he didn’t short circuit himself or anyone else! Back to the cars before the rain came after another happy and enjoyable day out. Bev.

3. 2007 Feb 28. Trampers. North Taieri Church, Salisbury, Lookout. Medium. Leaders: Ria, Glenice.

The View from the Taieri Lookout.

The View from the Taieri Lookout.

Abe at Taieri Lookout.

Abe at Taieri Lookout.

2. 2005 Nov 2. All. Farm Walk from North Taieri Church. Easy. Leaders: Ria, Jacqui, Graham, Eleanor W.

1. 1992 Aug 12. Taioma Road. Turn off just before Salisbury L.H. side. A hill walk, good views. Average.

    Leaders: Hartmann, Ted, Jack M, Ray

 

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Dec 13 2017

Harwood – End of year picnic

37 km.

6. 13/12/2017. All. Picnic lunch. E. Leaders: Alex and Liz

Route map, courtesy Ian. (Ian pic and caption.)

Having just emerged from ‘gorse forest’ track onto golf course. (Ian pic and caption.)

The leaders for the day. (Judy pic.)

Pot luck Christmas lunch.(Helen pic and caption.)

5. 27/9/2017. Hikers. Portobello to Harwood. E. Leaders: Chris and Dot.

Map of route, courtesy Ian.

The track from Portobello to the aquarium being made difficult with slips and mud, the leaders decided on a new hike for the day.  20 keen members left the cars at the Portobello show-grounds and headed the short distance up the hill to the cemetery for morning tea.

Coming away from morning tea.(Ian pic and caption.)

It was a glorious morning, calm and mild, and there were many comments on the fact that cemetery sites always seem to have the best views…. this one right across Portobello and the tranquil, beautiful harbour.

The thought of walking all the way to Harwood seemed a bit daunting to some, but in fact was very pleasant, following the cycle track all the way so that traffic was never a problem.  The predicted north-east breeze never arrived and jackets were gradually shed along the way.  Round Lower Portobello Bay several slips were commented upon, and we reached the picnic grounds for a leisurely lunch by mid-day.

Lunch at the Harwood Picnic Grounds. (Ian pic and caption.)

After the young-at-heart had a play on the swings…

Stop gazing round. Swing!.(Ian pic and caption.)

…and slides not to mention the hammock,

Help! Someone get me out. (Ian pic and caption.)

we made our way back to the cars by the same route, and so to Macandrew Bay for coffee etc.

A hike not done before, so thanks to Chris and Dot for some thick quinking (thanks Jay!) in finding a great alternative for the day. – Judy.

4. 17/12/2012. All. Harwood. End of year picnic. Leaders: Chris and Dorothy.
3. 15/12/2004. All. Christmas finger food lunch at Harwood. Leader: Chris.
Pause at sign.

Pause at sign.

Lunch in Harwood Hall. Dorothy, Wendy, Carmel.

Lunch in Harwood Hall. Dorothy, Wendy, Carmel.

x

Lunch in the Harwood Hall. Wendy, Carmel.

2. 17/12/2003. All. End of year Tramp. Share finger food. Leaders: Jean, Chris.
Setting off.

Setting off.

1. 19/12/1998. Xmas Lunch, Harington Point. Leader: Chris.

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Dec 05 2017

Taieri Mouth

Published by under Year round

No. 78 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “Knarston Park Sth Coast (Ask Jean Young) Farm”
Location: 31.5 km.

5/12/2017. Both. Livingstonia Park. Moturata Island. M. Leaders: Bob and Phil.

Route Map, courtesy Ian. (Ian pic and caption.)

A combined 32 Trampers and Hikers ventured down  through Brighton to Taieri Mouth , certainly not expecting traffic lights at Kuri Bush!  Livingstonia Park was the starting point after being warmly welcomed by Bob and we set off towards Akatore passing a range of new property developments; just prior to moving on up the rise to the highest point of the walk, Bob detoured us onto the lawn, surrounded by sheltering trees, at the old NZ Forest HQ.

Morning tea at Forestry HQ. (Phil pic and caption.)

Some of us pondered the thoughts of this site having a ‘second coming’ with the new governments initiative of a billion trees…….

We then headed south with the breeze at our back, up the gradually increasing rise, enjoying the views of forest and farmland and sea, interrupted regularly by shouts of ‘truck’ and ‘car’. before Bob again turned us off ( clearly a man with great local knowledge and contacts!)   and headed down through farmland to the seaside.  Here we mounted the stile and various scouts attempted to find their way onto the beach.  This was more easily achieved by Bob when his hands were free after helping at the stile!

A mix of short beach walks, interrupted by rocky headland became the norm, requiring some inventiveness to move through the formations,

Into the promise land? (Phil pic and caption.)

as well as some rather intimate team bonding as some larger rocks were mounted!  Well done everyone!

Eventually the main Taieri Beach came into view and on we set following the curve of the surf to the ‘bar’; nothing changes when tramping, initial hesitancy to getting the feet wet to plain old just barge on in or take the boots off.  Rumours of a channel were probably proved correct as a ‘minor river’ was crossed before the main bar being traversed …

Sand bar, not showing heavy-flowing channel needing to be waded. (Ian pic and caption.)

… and we reached the Island at around 12.30pm, to be greeted by large numbers of nesting gulls;

 

Birds nesting on Moturata Island close up. (Ian pic and caption)

apparently the island was used to collect guano in the good old days, and you could understand why.

Colours on the rocks over on the Island. (Helen pic and caption.)

With low tide being over half an hour past, it was decided to return to Knarston Park for lunch, and shelter from the incessant sea breeze.  This was a good decision as the ‘minor river’ had increased in volume, requiring river crossing techniques for some.

The scale of the bar was impressive, being much larger than thought, as were the patterns in the sand and rock formations both at the island and on the rocky headlands.

Following a late lunch, (more so because of the early morning tea!) everyone safely made their way back to the cars and met up with others who had completed a shorter walk.

I am reliably informed  the full walk was 11.4 km and well, we won’t specify the altitude will we….

The day was very satisfyingly repleted at the new Brighton Café, where it seemed we had more than 32 folk chatting away!

New coffee bar in Brighton.(Helen pic and caption.)

( Ice creams from next door more than welcome, as both shops are apparently owned by the same folk).

Ho ho and have a happy festive season. – Phil.

26/6/2013. Hikers. Knarston Park. Moturata Island. Leaders: J Knox, P Clough
Route

GPS of Route

It was a treat of a day. Well, yes, a bit of a cold wind, but – the sandbar!

We parked, morning-tead at Knarston Park on concrete picnic table seats that were not at all warm.

Then out to the sandbar. The tide was super-low, half a metre below sea-level. The bar was broad as broad. And dry. We walked and walked. This writer was overwhelmed with the experience of being on such a wide and long stretch of sand so under the waves at other times.  Eventually we reached the island.

There

At Moturata Island

We sauntered round. The tide was so-o-o low we were assured of plenty of time before heading back. We headed to the rocks the north end of the islands and scrambled over them to see the surf breaking on the seaward side of the island.

Rock

Rock at northern end of island.

And then we sauntered back. Marvellous, as John Campbell would say.

The wind was still a bit sharp however, so we went back to the cars and on round the road past the fishing boats. A couple of fisherfolk said they had already noticed us and it was good to hear that locals keep a sharp eye out for the sandbar trekkers. Then on further to the start of the John Bull for lunch. (5km marker on GPS route map).

Lunch

Lunch at terminus of John Bull track.

Back down and across the bridge to walk round the beach on the river’s true left. Yes, back to the cold wind, but it was behind us. We observed the cliffs below the houses until we thought it best to get off the beach.  We climbed a set of steep large steps and up through a property and a wire fence to reach the highway at the top. (7km on map)

Onto road

Onto road

We took the road back, crossed the bridge and reached our cars at near the 10km mark. Thanks to Judy and Pam carefully checking out our chances the day before and their leadership on the day.

A most satisfying day. – Ian

5/9/2012. Both. Knarston Park. Moturata Island – NOT! Leaders: Ian, Margaret.
Click to get full photo.

Morning tea time – when we were still optimistic of a successful outcome!

Tide, wind and flood were all against us.
Tide – Even though we had got the low tide time exactly as we had wanted, we failed to take in consideration that minimum low tide was still o.9 metros. Must aim for nearer 0.0 next time!
Wind – Although a boisterous wind was from off the land, whipping up sand and breaker spray, the waves were still coming in stronger than we had expected.
Flood – The Taieri River was in quite flood mode, breaking two channels across the sand-bar we had hoped to traverse.
S-o-o-o-o-o. We had morning tea. We walked down the beach to where the rocky part begins and back. We waited. And waited. Some more hopeful than others. Some more resigned to failure. We early lunched. Then walked down the beach again, aiming for a round trip through Livingstonia Park and back along the road, but short-cutted through a bit before that.
And then behold. KB contractors drilling a pipe-line for fibre-optic (we think) alongside the road with a wonderful machine. Complete with GPS guidance showing on a screen to the operator, it automatically screwed and push-drilled successive pipes through alongside the road and  under the ground, with a clever drill-head (we learnt on asking) that could tilt the pipe’s direction left and right, and up and down on the operator’s bidding. Marvellous! (To the technically-minded anyway.)
We were now close to the cars again. The day had been wind, but grew warmer as it progressed. Everyone was philosophical about the way the day had turned out.
Perhaps, as was suggested, a low-tide day late summer or autumn, when the Taieri is NOT in flood would be a much wiser day to tackle the Island next time.
7/8/2011. Both. Taieri Mouth. Knarston Park. Beach Walk. Easy. Leaders: Lex, Graham.
There was a full tide around 11.30 a.m., which we cunningly exploited by negotiating the narrow beach parts before and after its peak.
The beach walk down river however, was rather constrained by the rising tide at one brief point, splitting the ‘(Fool(?)-Hardy Paddlers’ from the ‘Off-Beach-Detourers’ before we could make it to the large beach seen on the next pic.

The Taieri Mouth in the distance behind us.

 

Further south, the ‘cuppa’ in the morning sun. Nice.

Inevitably, we had to come to the rocky outcrops and were forced to make our way up a rope-lined track to paddocks.

A careful steep climb.

The track climbed. (Elaine pic.)

A view from the paddocks. (Elaine pic)

Further on, we were able to descend to another beach.

At one point, we were treated to a swimming seal lumbering its way out of the water to sun itself on a rock

Then it was time for lunch before retracing out steps back to our cars.
While we were seated, our President read out a text sent to us by Leslie S from hospital, saying she was feeling better and sitting up. (Today’s trip was a replacement for the scheduled trip to Waipori with Leslie and Bill as leaders.)

The lunch stop.

30/6/2010. Hikers. Taieri Mouth. Beach Walk. Easy. Leaders: Lesley G, Neil.
A bitterly cold wind to start with. – Bill.

Taieri Beach, well wrapped up. Early lunch lunch stop. (Bill pic and caption)

Guess whose knees. (Members only.) (Bill pic and caption)

A necessary warm-up coffee stop. (Bill pic and caption)

17/1/2007. Hikers. Taieri Mouth Easy. Leaders: Chris, Ray.
14/6/2000 Taieri Mouth – Beach Walk. Leaders:Dot B, Joan H, Pam H

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