Apr 13 2016

Ross Creek and environs

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No. 94 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “Ross Creek – McGlashan College Year Round”

24/4/2016. Hikers. Ross Creek, McGouns, Tanner Lookou, Craigieburn. M. Leaders: Dawn and Pam.
GPS of route. Failed to complete it at time; hence straight line indicating car travel to Plaza Cafe. We did just on 7 km, despite the '6' not showing. (Hidden by the "1"?) Distracted by Spittles' wonderful disbursement of blackboy peaches.

GPS of route. Failed to complete it at time; hence straight line indicating car travel to Plaza Cafe. We did just on 7 km, despite the ‘6’ not showing. (Hidden by the “1”?) Distracted by Spittles’ wonderful disbursement of blackboy peaches.

Panorama of some of the 26 hikers lunching.

Panorama of some of the 26 hikers lunching.

23. 20/1/2016. Hikers. Woodhaugh Gardens, Ross Creek reservoir, Craigieburn, Tanner Lookout. Leaders: Bruce and Marjorie.
GPS route map of Ross Creek tramp courtesy Bruce.

GPS route map of Ross Creek tramp courtesy Bruce. Distance covered 10.6 km, moving time 2 hours 55 minutes, moving average 3.6 km/hour, stopped time 1 hour 44 minutes, overall average 2.3 km/hour, and total ascent 221 m.

Twenty-two hikers departed at 9.30 am from the Gardens’ Carpark opposite Mecure/Leisure Lodge on a sunny calm day, in contrast to the previous drizzly afternoon. We turned to the left in the Gardens and followed the north perimeter with the themed borders to the main gate, crossed at the traffic lights to the north side of Bank Street and walked around to the Woodhaugh Gardens, past the mural of the Otago University Clocktower building with a portrait of the architect Maxwell Bury (1825–1912), painted under the Pine Hill Road bridge.

Clock tower mural under bridge. (Bruce pic and caption)

Clock tower mural under bridge. (Bruce pic and caption)

We kept to the left in the Woodhaugh Gardens circumnavigating the duck pond by proceeding along a bush track and stopped at 10. 00 am for morning tea near the paddling pool.

Morning tea at Woodhaugh (Bruce pic and caption)

Morning tea at Woodhaugh (Bruce pic and caption)

Morning tea at Woodhaugh. (Bruce pic and caption)

Morning tea at Woodhaugh. (Bruce pic and caption)

We then followed the path near the right bank of the Leith to Malvern Street, crossing at the bridge and turning left opposite the building that was originally the Woodhaugh Hotel into Woodhaugh Street. We followed the track on the left on the left bank of the Leith Stream and passed an excavator at work clearing the boulder trap built in 1963. We ambled along the track up the valley past the New Zealand Motor Caravan Association’s property before crossing the foot bridge and continuing to the site of the disused Woodhaugh Quarry and the explosives store. Our path continued up the valley and along the true right side of the Ross Creek reservoir (facing down the valley) after which we crossed the bridge over Ross Creek and after proceeding about 300 m down the true left side of the reservoir took the track uphill on the left. Where this branched after another 100 m or so we turned to a relatively new and level track to the left which later passed close to some rimu trees before swinging right and coming out on the grassed area below the Craigieburn cow byre. After passing the byre and the left hand end of the stone wall further ahead we stopped at Tanner View at 11.40 am for lunch. After lunch we turned to the right on the track and then, at a sign, to the left passed the cobbled road to the little ruin.

Little ruin at Craigieburn. (Bruce pic and caption)

Little ruin at Craigieburn. (Bruce pic and caption)

From the ruin we took the track to the rimu forest eventually emerging at the bridge at the top of the Ross Creek reservoir that we had crossed earlier. We made our way down the left hand side of the reservoir and then followed our earlier route back to the gardens,

Group photo Woodhaugh Gardens. (Bruce pic and caption)

Group photo Woodhaugh Gardens. (Bruce pic and caption)

reaching Crocodile at 2.10 pm where many stopped for refreshments.

– Bruce and Marjorie

22. 25/3/2015. Hikers. Ross Creek and McGouns Track. Leaders: Pam and Dawn.
GPS of Hikers' route

GPS of Hikers’ route

The hike was planned well. First, we parked our cars at the beginning of Malvern Street. Pam and Dawn  then led us into the Upper Leith Walkway
Upper Leith Walkway (John pic)

Upper Leith Walkway recent sign. (John pic)

that runs alongside Woodhaugh Street till we came to and crossed the large footbridge onto the other side of the Leith and through the old quarry that lies under the cliffs that bound the north end of Maori Hill, where Braeview Crescent runs along their top. The path then twisted us up into Ross Creek, with cliffs now on our right marking the boundary of Rockside Road houses above. On and up until very steeply up to crest the big earth dam (that is scheduled to be reinforced some time) of Ross Creek Reservoir.
Plaque. Ross Creek Water Works. (Jphn pic)

Plaque. Ross Creek Water Works. (John pic)

Meantime the water level is kept remarkably low to relieve stress on the dam wall. Morning tea was up at the second part of the reservoir, which we found to be surprisingly set up for water polo, but absent any players.
Morning tea. (John pic.)

Taken by the morning tea stop. Unusual dewatered view of reservoir. (John pic.)

Then on up through the bush tracks. We passed through the Craigieburn area…
The Little Ruin. (John pic)

The Little Ruin. (John pic)

…to emerge at the intersection below Booth Road. This was an important regrouping point before Pam led us on through a gate…
A new McGouns Track sign. (John pic)

A new McGouns Track sign at entrance to McGouns Road. (John pic)

into McGouns Road leading to the start of the McGouns track. This took us across to the Pineapple Track and back down to Booth Road.
Back into the top of Ross Creek bush, but this time up to…
Tanners View sign. (John pic)

Tanners View sign. (John pic)

… the old cow byre …
Tanners View (John pic)

Old Cow Byre (John pic)

Lunch (John pic)

Lunch on old cow byre site. (John pic)

…for lunch.

After lunch it was simply back out and down through the Ross Creek environs to the cars.

Thanks to Pam and Dawn for a well planned hike. – Ian.
21. 12/6/2013. Hikers. Ross Creek and surrounds. Leaders: Lex and Fred.
Route

Route. 9.65km

We parked our cars at the north end of Burma Road. Lex led us through the bush to exit up on Tannock Road. Along a bit and down Leighton Road to  morning tea in the grassy reserve at the road’s end.
Then back along Tannock Road, (just past 1km on map) down through the bush and along the reservoir to the dam at its end. It was a shock to see how much the water had been lowered.
Low water

Low water in Ross Creek Reservoir.

Of course, because of the cracks that have been detected in the earth dam.

Looking down

Looking down the dam face to cleared bush below.

We crossed the dam, turned left and down to walk past the cleared bush site …

Looking up

Looking back up the face of the dam.

and on down to reach the junction of Rockside Road at its bottom and Malvern street. (2km mark on map)

Then it was to walk leisurely up Malvern Street, stopping for Lex to point out various interests on the way. What surprised ss was a string of tall posts diagonally across the Leith above the first set of houses we passed. We thought it might be to trap flood debris.

Just further up Lex pointed out a weir, immediately below which he used to swim in when a small boy. Ian and Lex talked about the Clark family house that used to be across the locked pedestrian bridge overlooking the weir.

Then it was yet further up to the old Jacksons’ beautiful stone house when Ian recalled, (as a boy in company with others) stealing  cream out of a jar left to cool in the clear cooling water of a ditch, replacing what was removed with water. Just a bit further up, at the foot of Fulton Rd was the house of the late artist Eana B Jeans with only the gate of Ian’s old home showing a sort distance up Fulton Road. On up, to turn from Malvern Street up to the left onto Islay Street, (Beyond 4km mark on map) upon which, in a sunny spot, we stopped for lunch, just above the road connecting across to Fulton Road. Ian and Lex recalled calling the three roads the steepy (Fulton), the toppy (Islay) and the greeny (the connecting less-used road, now (surprisingly, or maybe not so surprisingly) closed.

Lunch

Lunch on a bank in the sun on Islay Street.

At the top, opposite Lex’s childhood house we went over to the former plantation road (nr 5km mark on map) that led to the start of the McGoun Track and stopped to view the stone cairn 1996 Tannock memorial. Further on and up until we reached the top of the (comparatively) recent set of mountain bike tracks (2/3 of way to the 6km mark). These we took, zig-zagging down to reach the large car-park at the end of Wakari Road. (7m mark) It was here that one or two of our party of 17 elected to take a short cut down to the cars while Lex took the rest of us along Wakari Road, past the end of Polewarth Road to turn down Joshua Place (a bit before the 8km mark) and from the along to a track that led us back to Polewarth Road. This we turned down heading for Burma Road at its other end, until called back by some at the rear who had noticed a dog worrying a flock of sheep in a paddock. We cell-phoned the DCC to inform them of such, along with the dog’s registered number. – Good deed for the day. Then on down Polewarth Rd to join the Burma Rd (abt 9km mark) and along it back to the cars. Thanks to Lex and Fred for yet a further novel changed route – and the chocs! – Ian.

20. 24/10/2012. Hikers, Ross Creek. Leaders: Lance and Lois.

19. 30/5/2012. Hikers. Wakari Road. Cycle Tracks etc. Ross Creek. Leaders: Lex, Jill.

18. 25/5/2011. Hikers. Ross Creek area. E. Leaders: Lex, Molly
17. 21/7/2010. Hikers. Ross Creek area. New track. E. Leaders: Lex, Graham
16. 26/3/2008. Hikers. Ross Creek. Easy. Leaders: Lex, Jean.
In Ross Creek

In Ross Creek

As we’ve come to expect, Wed. was fine and 15 happy hikers parked by the Meter House, near the corner of Wakari & Burma Rds, ready to set off on the Ross Creek area and tracks.

Lex was our leader, and as he lived in that region from childhood he is very knowledgeable about the territory, which makes a popular walk even more interesting. We did various tracks through the lovely bush, stopping every now and then for Lex to tell us about some trees that had been planted and trialled, or other things of interest about that part. It was lovely to hear so many birds whistling and singing cheerily all round us. So often these days one is very disappointed at the lack of birdsong in a region where once you would have heard them. We arrived at Prospect Park

Lunch at Prospect Park

Lunch at Prospect Park

View from the Bullock Track

View from the Bullock Track

via bush and road and relaxed and soaked up the sun while enjoying our lunch. Then it was off down the Bullock Track to the lovely little trail along the Leith Stream through the old Woodhaugh Quarry area. From there it was back up one of the bush tracks to the cars. A lovely pleasant day out, as usual. – Bev Harvey

15. 26/3/2008 Leaders: Lex, Jean A

14. 14/11/2007 Trampers. Woodhaugh, Ross Creek, Davies, Flagstaff Track, Pineapple, Ross Creek return.

13. 21/2/2007. Hikers. Ross Creek, McGouns Track. Easy. Leaders: Lex, Dot B.
12. 14/7/2006. Ross Creek Reserve – Woodhaugh. Leaders: Doreen, Rosemary and Jack.
11. 28/9/2005. Hikers. Ross Creek. Leaders: Betty B, Nelson T
10. 13/10/2004 Ross Creek, Burma Road. Leaders: Lex, Doug M, Margaret D

Tree canopy

9. 2/10/2002. Combined. Ross Creek, Burma Road. Easy. Leaders: Lex, Doug M, Evelyn C.

8. 1/10/2001. Alt. Ross Creek – Cannington Road. Leaders: Joan H, Jean, Peggy M.
7. 18/4/2001. Ross Creek. Leaders: Bev and Ivan, Peggy M.
6. 24/11/1999. Ross Creek area. Leaders: Jack and Rosemary, Jean.
5. 8/9/1999. Rose Creek Reserve. Leaders: Jack and Rosemary, Jean.
4. 29/7/1998. Ross Creek, John McGlashan. Leaders: Ivan and Rosemary.
3. 19/11/1997. Ross Creek, School Creek from McGlashan College. Leaders: Bev and Ivan.
2. 7/8/1991. Ross Creek area from John McGlashan College. Easy. Leaders: Nel, Margaret B, Ivan, Margaret D.
1. 13/6/1990. Ross Creek and School Creek from John McGlashan College. Easy. Leaders: Margaret S, Joan, Jean and Jack.

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