Aug 21 2019

Taieri Ferry and Finlayson Roads, Bells farm, Kennedys, Millennium.

Published by under Trampers,Year round

Read “Taieri River Geology” for some background information.
“Legends of the Lower Taieri” includes a section about John Bull if you persist in reading down far enough.

Wardells’ White House 25 km from car park.

14. 21/8/2019. Trampers: Millenium Track/ Kennedys/Wenita Forest. M. Leader: Phil K.14.


16 trampers departed the car park and linked up with the Outram 3 at the carpark at the end of Taieri Ferry road.


Conditions were ‘standard’ for this walk, with cloudless skies, no breeze and the promise of a shoal of whitebait, but for the brown colour of the river.


The group agreed with the suggestion by the guide to have a belated morning tea at the Café John Bull, about an hour’s walk away.  So off we set, an above average chirpy group that drowned out the numerous birdlife……The steady climb came rushing back into the memories of those who had dared travelled this way before…..plenty of dappled light along the way, giving way to darker and damper forest as we descended through the shady side down to John Bull Gully, where just before arrival we had some craic with Dermot and his new search and rescue dog. Yes the dog, being Irish, could talk to…


Café John Bull lived up to it’s reputation of good seating in an inspiring environment, the scene punctuated by a tinny zooming by, occupied by two disappointed white baiters?


Flowering Kowhai adorned the cliff faces above us, as we re-entered the track and began the ascent out of the Gully, initially nicely graded through a saddle, then steeper for half an hour before arriving at ‘the seat’, with views, high above the river.


Following lots of photo taking and water top up, we went off track through some pines to link to a farm track, thence through a pine forest and then out to the open fields, trying hard not to disturb a deer herd beautifully standing on the crest; most would have got a good photo.


From there it was steadily up, staying on the straight and narrow deer lane, through gates to arrive at Finlayson Road, where lunch was taken at 12.30pm.


At 1pm we set off again, turning right down Galloway Road; great views of sea and plain and moors and in the NW distance the snow capped Mt Kohurau and Kakanui’s? Moving on down good views of Taieri Mouth and the Island as it was fully low tide.


Gate hopping and climbing, along with stiff legs was fully tested at the locked gate into Wenita Forest; from there it was a steady stretch out down through the open and newly planted forest; the highway was clearly done by engineers from the good old USA, with sweeping bends providing great views and an appreciation of the scale of the forestry operation.  Across the other side of the river the Takitakitoa Wetlands, newly acquired by Fish and Game showed promise of whitebait breeding grounds and game birds for the future.


We arrived back at the cars at 2.30pm, 13.11 kms later and burning 956 calories, that were offset by around 1200 calories per person at Wals…….another great day out.



13. 2/5/2018. Both. Millennium Track. Leader: Eleanor.

Trampers: Millennium/John Bull Tracks. M.

38 fit looking Trampers/Hikers and Ramblers  assembled at the car park for the combined tramp along to John Bull Gully and Taieri Mouth.  The day was calm and mild (after a lot of rain over the weekend).  On arrival at the White House at roads end, quite a lot of jostling of cars was necessary for the drivers to find a spot to park.

All of us set off along the very brown looking river bank for a short walk into the Picnic spot

Morning smoko. (Gordon pic and caption.)

where we had smoko.  The 25 Hikers were going onto John Bull Gully and the 13 Trampers were heading to Taieri Mouth and back.

We set off at 10:15 am  and after a short climb, the track levelled and wound along the bush covered banks of the river.  We then crossed a small spur which is where the 2 tracks meet.  After climbing into a gully with large tree ferns, the track emerged at the high point, with a welcome seat

½ way. (Gordon pic and caption.)

and good views.

View from the top. (Phil pic and caption.)

2 of our party were quite happy to sit and chat, so enjoyed the sun waiting 2 hours for our return.  Along the next section the native bush is slowly overtaking the gorse.  Another climb around Governors Point, where we got great views up and down the gorge.  By now it is downhill to the board walk across Muddy Gully, then finally the welcome sight of the bridge …

Nearly there. (Phil pic and caption.)

… and cribs come into view.

An enjoyable lunch and catchup was had at the picnic tables.

Cafe Taieri Mouth. (Phil pic and caption.)

A Kingfisher was spotted on the power lines near Jay’s crib.

Half an hour later we headed off back the way we came.   Was surprising the track was so dry, considering recent rain.  Quite a lot of bird song heard, also, a little Robin was spotted.

We walked 18.6 km’s.  Similar times of 2 1/4 hours each way.  Was a first for some trampers to do the return trip.  Followed by a very welcome hot drink at Wal’s @ 4pm by a few of us.  Ending a great tramp with great company. – Eleanore

Hikers. Millennium Track. E. Sub-Group Leaders: Bob, Ian.

Route map, courtesy Ian.

Supplementary Report. From the Picnic Spot, 22 Hikers, leaving 3 Ramblers behind to plan their own trip, eventually stirred themselves to trace the Trampers’ steps up to the regular winding-down-in (to gullies) and up-out (around ridges) Millennium Track to John Bull Gully

Ian explains about the old track out of John Bull Gully. (Clive pic and caption.)

– for an early lunch there, overflowing the two  eight-seater picnic tables in the process.

Shortly after our arrival, an informal small sub-group from among the Otago Tramping and Mountaineering Club, whom we had earlier met at the car park arrived, full of praise for our website which they regularly used for excursion ideas. They found their own spot seated among some obliging rocks.

The sun shone, the slight wind dropped, we leisured,

We leisured. (Ian pic and caption.)

and eventually stirred, to make our way back to the car park, there to find the Ramblers happily sunning themselves by the river.

We can echo the Trampers’ report on the state of the track. How surprisingly dry it was {mostly} and how wide and well kept too. A pity the occasional thoughtfully placed resting seat along its way has been denied its  river view by the relentlessly growing native bush.

A pleasant fulfilling walk topped off …

Relaxing coffee chat. (Ian pic and caption.)

… with a relaxing coffee chat. – Ian.

12. 23/8/2017.Trampers. Millennium Track, Kennedys, Bells. M. Leader: Arthur.

Galloway Road tracks map. (Map courtesy Arthur.)

Only 8 trampers were out today to enjoy the good weather and the  tramp. The Taieri Ferry Bridge was closed for ongoing (all winter, so far) repairs, so we travelled to the south end of the flood free highway before turning back onto Taieri Ferry Road.

Parking at the usual parking area, it was 10 am as we began walking. The low lying bits of the track were quite wet and muddy, as expected.

Looking at the damage from the rain. (Helen pic and caption.)

After 15 minutes we came to the picnic area on the riverbank for our smoko stop. It was about low tide and the river was very low.

Following the Millennium Track again, a side trip to the river was made at John Bull Gully where two DOC workers were cutting the grass around the picnic area. They had arrived by boat, which was sensible.

At John Bull gully where some maintenance was being done. They traveled by boat. (Helen pic and caption.)

From John Bull Gully it is rather a good uphill grunt for some way, but eventually the highest point of the track was gained – a 5 minute stop being taken here at the observation seat to admire the views.

View from the seat. Magic. (Helen pic and caption.)

We turned off the Millennium Track now, uphill beside the gorse, and then through the pine trees to reach the end of the deer fenced lane on the Kennedy Farm. It was up slope all the way but the lane took us up to Finlayson Road. It was 12.30 pm now, so was time for the lunch stop. High cloud was making the sunshine a bit weak, but with almost no breeze, so it was a pleasant, high up spot for the occasion.

We had to follow Finlayson Road towards Waihola before turning onto Galloway Road and followed it down to its end. We were high up here giving us very good views to enjoy.

The last leg was down through a recent logged forestry block.

Down through the felled forestry and lots of sticky mud. (Helen pic and caption.)

The going was good at first, but further down a digger rowing up the “slash” had left the dozed dirt track in rather a mess. But by taking care we negotiated this area safely. It was about 200 metres down through the standing pine trees to get to the bottom, where we emerged back at the carpark.

Today’s tramp was 12.7 km, and all were happy. On returning to Mosgiel THE BLEND coffee shop enjoyed our patronage.

It had been another good day’s social tramp for our group. Thanks to all. – Art.

11. 23/7/2014. Trampers. Millennium Track, Kennedys, Bells.


GPS of route courtesy Ken. We walked 13.4 km; moving ave 4.5 km/hr; moving time 2 hr 44 min; climbed 530 m.

Ignore the missing piece of track on the Google Earth view, as I forgot to reset the GPS before we started off.
With the day looking promising weather wise, 4 set off to walk the Millennium Track from Henley , then up through Kennedys property, & back down one of the ridges onto the river road again. We stopped at the Taieri Scenic Reserve picnic table for morning tea, & then went on to John Bull Gully, where we had a short rest before tackling the steep climb up to the seat on the John Bull track, & over the fence behind here to walk up past Kennedys house & onto Finlayson Rd. where we stopped for lunch in the shelter of some flax bushes.

Neil enjoying his cuppa at lunchtime.

Neil enjoying his cuppa at lunchtime. (Ken pic and caption)

Arthur and Ian at lunchtime. (Ken pic and caption)

Arthur and Ian at lunchtime. (Ken pic and caption)

It was then a short walk along to the turn off onto Galloway Rd. We walked the full length of Galloway Rd. & climbed the fence into a very wet & sloppy grassed paddock, which was quite steep in places, but luckily nobody fell over. All this area was new to everybody on the tramp, so it was a case of following our instincts to find the way back to the cars, which was accomplished without any trouble.

10. 11/7/2012. Millennium, John Bull, Kennedy’s Farm, Finlayson Road, Galloway Road, Bell’s Farm ridge, Ferry Road. 12 km.

Kms indications 1 & 2 are Millennium, 3-4 is thru John Bull Gully, 5 is up Kennedys Farm, 6 is Finalyson Rd turning off into Galloway Rd, 7-10 is down ridge, 10 to end  is Ferry Road. (Phone died before completing circui!)

Seven of us enjoyed a good winter tramp, warm in the sun and calm, even on the top. Went down the same ridge on Bells Farm that we did last time. Note: the way to find it (better than last time!) is to turn down 4WD track adjacent to a large corrugated shed part-way down Galloway Rd before the road swings away over to the right. The track skirts the top of a gully before emerging onto the ridge. Then just follow your nose down.
We elected to do this ridge rather than the even better one at the end of Galloway road as the leasee had reported he was running bulls in a paddock near the bottom of the ridge! – Ian

9. 17/6/2009 Trampers Taieri Ferry Road, Millennium, Kennedys, Finlayson Road, Bells Farm. Leaders: George, Bill M
It was only at the carpark that we were sure that frosty road conditions were going to turn out safe enough for setting out. Four of us in Bill’s car met George at Wardells cottage. George had planned a clockwise walk this time, starting on the Millennium Track. We stopped off soon at the track turn-off to the river for morning tea.
Cuppa on Millenniu. Lex, George, Bill

Cuppa on Millennium. Doug, Lex, George, Bill

Snow on the track was more obvious as we ascended to the seat on the John Bull where we planned to turn off up to Kennedys farm.

Pause at seat on John Bull. Bill, George, Doug, Lex.

Pause at seat on John Bull. Bill, George, Doug.

As we got up near the house snow (and a chilly breeze) was at its thickest.

Snow thicker here. Doug.

Snow thicker here. Doug, George, Lex, Bill.

At this point George had already determined to ask at the house where we might lunch in a bit of shelter. “Boots off and come inside!” was the response, providing a lunch stop in the most civilised of surroundings.
A long time after, we (reluctantly?) resumed the tramp. Snow had been graded off Finlayson Road and only semi-melted slush was left. We turned down Galloway Road, but had gone only a short distance before George decided it was time to turn off to to descend a ridge. After descending the ridge for a considerable distance we were bushed out by heavy scrub and had to return up far enough to try another next-door ridge. This gave clear access to the marshy flats below.

Going down farm ridge.

Returning down farm ridge. Doug, Lex, Bill, George.

Matters got a little dodgy at the ridge’s base but we soon got onto a squelchy paddock yielding to a less squelchy track that led out alongside a drain to Ferry Road.
A final walk along the road back down to the cars ended a most enjoyable walk out on the snow.
I now realise there are at least three navigable ridges between Finlayson and Ferry Roads, although George seems to have done them all some time in the past. There was the one we did 7 years ago, the one we did today and a further one from the foot of Galloway Road that Bill recalled Mr Kennedy advising we take but which George must have failed to pick up on. – Ian.

7. 12/4/2006. Trampers. Henley, Waihola Road, Millennium Track. Medium. Leaders: Irene, Dot B.
6. 12/1/2005. Trampers. Wardells, Waihola Road, Millennium Track. Leaders: George, Bob H.
5. 31/7/2002 Taieri Ferry to Waihola Road and Bells farm. Kennedys, Millennium. Bell Farm. Seek permission. Lambing Aug to Oct. Cars park halfway down Taieri Ferry Road, end of forest. Up hill till lunch time. Wenita permit.  Wenita Map. Leaders: George, Bob H, Colleen
4. 13/11/1996. Henley Ferry to Waihola Road and return. Leaders: Les and Margaret, Bev McI.
3. 21/8/1996. Taieri Ferry to Waihola Road and Bell’s Farm. Medium. Leaders: Les and Margaret, Bev McI
2. 15/3/1995. Between Galloway Road and Waihola Road. Medium. Leaders: Doug and Ngaire, Margaret and Les.
1. 6 Apr 1994 John Bull track, over paddock to Finlayson Road, back on John Bull Track. Leaders: Les S, Bill H, Doug & Ngaire.

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Aug 15 2019

Upcoming Trips

Published by under Uncategorized


Winter Start Time: 9.15 a.m. at Car Park for 9.30 a.m.

21 August.
Trampers: Millennium Track forestry loop (Henley). M $6.00. Keith. Phil K.
Hikers: Victory Beach. E. $8.00. Low Tide about 1.00 p.m. 1.8m. Diane and Jill D.

 ***** 22 August. AGM. 1.30 p.m. Mosgiel Presbyterian Church Buildings.  *****

28 August.
Trampers: Hope Hill. M. $4.00. Gordon.
Hikers: Bethunes Gully, Mount Cargill. E. $5.00. Jan B and Jay.

Spring Start Time 8.45 a.m. for 9.00 a.m.

4 September.
Both: Hightop, Semple Road. Green Hut track loop. E. $11.00. Arthur and Clive. Continue Reading »

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Aug 14 2019

Boulder Beach

Published by under Penguins Dec- Feb,Trampers

Boulder Beach closed  during yellow eyed penguin nesting, moulting, December-February months.

Distance from car-park: 24 km to Macandrew Bay, 27 to Highcliff Road.

16. 14/8/2019. Trampers. Highcliff, Boulder Beach. M. Leaders: Helen and Phil.

17 brave souls left the car park  and travelled over to Tautaku parking in a car park nearby.

J.1.Tautuku Fishing Club, Smaill's Beachc

Tautuku Fishing Club, Smaill’s Beach. (Jenni pic and caption.)

Cool day with a cold wind was blowing.  Walked up the Karatei Track having morning tea in the shelter of the trees and pampas grass at the top of the track.

G.2nd -- Sheltered morn, tea spotc

Sheltered morn, tea spot. (Gordon pic and caption.)

The decision was made to go all the way up to the top of the Karatei Road and keep the wind on our backs. Going on to Highcliff road there were great views up the harbour.

J.4a.Overlooking Macandrew Baycc

Overlooking Macandrew Bay. (Jenni pic and caption.)

Turned in at Penzance kennels and set off down the Buskin track. Wet and muddy in places. We stopped for our lunch ending up in two  groups. One in the shelter of the trees and the other getting views while sheltering in the bushes.

G.6th -- Part of team at lunchc

Part of team at lunch. (Gordon pic and caption.)

A cyclist passed by carrying his bike which he had to do for most of the track.  We then kept going down the hill and turned onto the Highcliff track and up.

P.1.Celebrating – and we are not even at the top!c

Celebrating – and we are not even at the top!. (Phil K. pic and caption.)

Jenni has a slip in the cowpat.  Views were over to Sandfly bay and beautiful views of Boulder beach.

P.2. Wow

Wow. (Phil K. pic and caption.)

Further up we went past beautiful stone walls and past old buildings and the house. Onto Mcmeeking road and back out to the Karatei road …

H.1.Walking down Karatei Roadc

Walking down Karatei Road. (Helen pic and caption.)

… and then the track. By this time the weather front was coming through and it was cold with rain. Lovely views over Smales beach with a wild sea

J.2a.Great views from Karetai Trackcc

Great views from Karetai Track. (Jennie pic and caption.)

and back to the start.  Coffee and refreshments were taken in the warmth of the Tuppence cafe in Waverley.

H.3.Coffee at Tuppencec

Coffee at Tuppence. (Helen pic and caption.)

On the whole a great tramp in the cold but some awesome views.  Helen and Phil M.

15. 20/6/2018. Trampers. Macandrew Bay – Boulder Beach. M. Leader: Dave.

11 Trampers were keen to get on the move after some cold dull misty days. We started out on Greenacre road at Macandrew bay.  This road leads on to Greenacres  track through a patch of old macrocarpas up to Highcliff Rd. We then walked along Highcliff road for about 1 km to Paradise track. Along this part of the road Larnach built a hotel so that he didn’t have to go far (3km) to go  for his drinks. The walk down Paradise track …

Ruins at start of Paradise Track. (Gordon pic and caption.)

… was interesting with some native bush either side of the track to start. As we wandered down, there were outstanding views of the coastline.

There were a number of clumps of Macrocarpas where original 1860 houses used to stand. Some remains still existing along with sturdy well, built stone walls. Early family names included  Sanderson and Beattie.   At the bottom of the track we visited the named Beattie cottage, …

Old ruins just before Boulder Beach. (Gordon pic and caption.)

… well surrounded in macrocarpas with a few remaining garden plants.  Beattie was known for introducing the first rabbits to the peninsula.

We then headed through the protected area to the beach – aptly named with many boulders …

Tiptoeing thru the rocks. (Phil K. pic and caption.)

 …  and a sandy beach to one side.  Lunch was had there.

The return trip was via Braidwood and Seal Point roads up to Highcliff road.  The mist had cleared and the coastal views were amazing.  Spirits were all lifted after a visit to the church at Pukehiki!!

Coffee was calling so we headed back down the greenacre track, …

Heading back for coffee. (Gordon pic and caption)

… to the coffee bar at Macandrew bay, a convivial ending to an enjoyable walk. Trip approx. 14km in 4hrs – Dave.

14. 27/7/2016. Trampers. Macandrew Bay – Boulder Beach. M. Leader: Neil M.

Nine trampers left the car park at 9:30am and headed off to Macandrew Bay following the harbour coastline of still, unruffled blue waters to our meet-up parking place. A coffee van set up in the same place was denied patronage as coffee at the start of a tramp was simply ‘not on’!

About 10 am we started the walk up Greenacres Track which was very pleasant although a tad slippery in places.  Upon arriving at the pines and drier ground it was time for a break. It was here we were joined by a walking rider and very placid horse which apparently had a distaste for riding downhill routes and had to be led on foot.

Morning tea. Tempted by alternate form of transport.(Margreet pic and caption.)

Morning tea. Tempted by alternate form of transport.(Margreet pic and caption.)

Snacks for trampers and piece of apple for horse and  with renewed energy we went our separate ways.  At the top of the track, just before High Cliff road, a long-roped swing created a diversion for one who enjoyed a childhood revival …
Swing (Margreet pic and caption.)

Neil enjoying a swing on the way. (Margreet pic and caption.)

… and where others removed a layer of clothing.

Along  High Cliff Road the view across the harbour and city and over to the background of snow sprinkled Maungatua and further behind to the white Lammermoors was beautiful.
Monumentt to old cheese factory site. (Margreet pic and caption.)

Monumentt to old cheese factory site. (Margreet pic and caption.)

  On to Paradise Track which leads down to Boulder bay arriving at Boulder bay at midday for lunch on the sand in the sun— no wind and very pleasant.
Lunch at Boulder Beach. (Margreet pic and caption.)

Lunch at Boulder Beach. (Margreet pic and caption.)

The return route took the eastern side of  Boulder Bay, a fairly constant uphill,  4-wheel track leading on to Seal Point road which in turn joined up with HIgh Cliff Road again and along to Greenacres Track completing the loop.  We enjoyed the day even though it was clouding over and cooling down at this stage. Down Greenacres track and back to the cars  and of course finished the tramp with a coffee at  Bay Cafe.
Walked 12.8 Km; Travelling time 3 3/4 hours;  Climbed 580 metres. – Carole
13. 23/9/2009. Macandrew Bay, Greenacre Street, Highcliff Road, Paradise Road, Boulder Beach, return. Medium. Leaders: Glenice and Keith.
At top of Greenacre Track.

At top of Greenacre Track. Susan, Ken. Sabina, Glenice, Keith, Hazel in background.

Look carefully. Lamb of mixed backgrounds!

Look carefully. Lamb of uncertain parentage!

Bruce and Majorie's Crib

Bruce and Majorie’s Crib

New sign on Beattie Cottage

New sign on Beattie Cottage

Track signs at corner of Beattie property

Track signs at corner of Beattie property

Conservation area sign

Conservation area sign

On beach at last

Arrival at Boulder Beach. Keith, Sabina, George, Susan, Hazel.

View from top of Paradise Road

View from top of Paradise Road

Paradise Track signs

Paradise Track signs

12. 30/1/2008. Trampers. Macandrew Bay, Boulder Beach. Medium. Leaders: Bruce and Marjorie.
11. 9/8/2006 Trampers. Macandrew Bay, Boulder Beach. Leaders: Bruce, Glenis
10. 8/6/2005. Trampers. Macandrew Bay – Boulder Beach, return. Leaders: Kerri, Helen S.

Up from Macandrew Bay. Doug, Arthur, Tom, Dorothy, Bob


Down Paradise. Doug, Tom, Bob


World Wide Fund for Nature Conservation Area


Returning from Boulder Beach

9. 28/8/2002. Macandrew Bay – Greenacre Street – Boulder Beach. Medium+. Leaders: Ian, Irene, Elaine.
8. 15/8/2001 Macandrew Bay Greenacre Street Paradise Track, Boulder Beach. Medium. Leaders Doug M, Mary L, Evelyn C
7. 19/7/2000 Macandrew Bay Greenacre Street Paradise Track, Boulder Beach. Leaders Jean A, Chris, Joan H
6. 1/12/1999. Macandrew Bay, Larnach Castle, Boulder Beach. Leaders: Molly, Bill H, Pat.
5. 6/5/1998. Macandrew Bay, Greenacres, Boulder Beach, Paradise Road. Leaders: Doug J, Betty, Ted.
4. 21/5/1997. Macandrew Bay Greenacres Street, Boulder Beach return. Leaders: Chris H, Ria H, Jean
3. 6/3/1996. Macandrew Bay – Greenacres Street – Boulder Beach. Medium. Leaders: Dot and Eric, Chris, Joan H.
2. 4/11/1992 Tomahawk Lagoon, Boulder Beach, Paradise Track. Round Trip. Average. Leaders: Ria H, Bev H, Jean A, Noel.
1. 2/10/1991. Macandrew Bay, up Greenacre Street and over to Boulder Beach. Return by Paradise Road. Windy Ridge!! Lovely views. Leaders: Ria and Kees, Jean A, Ria H, Peg C.

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Aug 14 2019

St Clair Beach Walks

Published by under Beach,Year round

17 km from car park
15. 14/8/2019. Hikers. Corstorphine and St Clair Park. Leaders: Judy D. and Barbara.
With a forecast of Southerly winds and showers, 21 intrepid hikers met at Corstorphine Park area.
We turned into Hillhead  from Isadore Road, and settled for the shelter of the Pavilion at the park , for our morning tea.

C.1) morning tea at Corstorphine Reservec

morning tea at Corstorphine Reserve. (Clive pic and caption.)

We were looking into brilliant sunshine -the warmest part of the day! We headed along Hillhead, doing a couple of loops through the new subdivisions, and further along saw a number of alpacas  on the hillside. The view at the end was hazy, due to the strong winds, and we were pleased to turn round and have our backs to the wind.

Back to Isadore Road, where we walked alongside St. Clair Golf Course, and photos were taken when Cargill Castle came into view. We stopped at 2 reserves at Highgrove to enjoy sea views, but by now rain was threatening. We had a quick close look at the Castle.
C.2.2 + ) Cargills Castlec

Cargills Castle. (Clive pic and caption.)

C.4.2 + ) Cargills Castlec

Cargills Castle. (Clive pic and caption.)

Thanks to Alec for showing us the way in. On to the entrance of the narrow track which goes towards the nesting sites of the Fairy Prion gulls. Barbara talked about these, but we didn’t go further, due to the cold wind and rain.
We retraced our steps to find a reasonably shelters place for lunch, the time which we shortened.
Some hikers chose to walk down the hill to the Zoo Cafe, and the others went back to get the cars.
The early coffee was welcome, and we even had a Reserved notice on the tables!
Elaine shared her hot chips with us. Yum! – Judy D.
14. 23/5/2014. Hikers. St Clair street walk. E-M. Leaders: Jay and Jan.

A small group of around 14 hikers left the carpark in the rain bound for St Clair. It was raining hard on the motorway and it looked like it was going to be a trip into St Clair for a coffee only. However, the rain stopped when we arrived at St Clair beach where we parked our cars!

We then walked around a couple of streets to admire some lovely old homes along the way. We walked back onto Forbury Road for a couple of blocks before ascending the steps beside Frances Hodgkins Village where we stopped for morning tea on a small reserve – some sitting on the steps (in the sunshine I might add) and Bev was able to point out her new abode.

We continued up the steps after the morning tea break onto Easter Crescent and upwards to Middleton Road, turning left past the golf course and onto the reserve at the end of the new subdivision to view the cliffs

Noi pic.

on one side of the ocean and could only catch a glimpse of Cargills Castle

Jan pic.

to our left as a new house was being erected. We did a small circuit around the subdivision and then on down the hill back to St Clair beach where we ate our lunch on the steps and bench seats watching the waves crashing in. As it was a cold day we decided to finish our walk and headed back out to Mosgiel for a coffee etc at Blend to warm ourselves up. Our walk being 9ks approx.

Jan, Jay & Jenny

13. 30/4/2014. Hikers. St Clair – St Kilda. Easy. Leaders: Liz and Dawn.
GPS of route

GPS of route

This reporter was new to this particular hike and was most impressed with the clever planning of a satisfying route. 35 of us set out from our cars parked in Albert St, St Clair. We walked up it to turn right into Beach St, left into Sandringham St and right into Norfolk St to reach the foot of Jacobs Ladder. How many steps? 250? Well, MANY! And relentlessly steep as well (a red spot on the map, at abt 500 mtrs indicates our slower progress. We all eventually made it up to Ravenswood Rd where we had to negotiate a multi-holed footpath being prepared for broadband fibreglass cable. The views of suburb, beach and sea were rewarding. We carried on down, (1 km mark) crossed to briefly climb Cliffs Rd alongside its steep roadside banks and interesting variety of houses to finally emerge at its end by the beachfront and to turn (2 km) via Second Beach Rd (where did that name come from??) to morning-tea at its track’s end, in lovely sunshine.

Morning tea at Second Beach (John pic)

Back to St Clair (3 km) beach, or rather the sandhills track above it, before descending to walk along St Kilda beach (4, 5 & 6 kms) to its terminus at Lawyers Head, where we lunched.

Lunch at end of St Kilda Beach.

After lunch, we struggled up a soft sandhill track nearby to reach the road above.
View from Lunch

Panorama of view from John Wilson Drive immediately above lunch stop (John – from 4 [slightly obvious!] pics)

We returned along the drive. (7 & 8 [hidden behind ‘5] kms) …
Race Course

Panorama of Forbury Race Course from John Wilson Drive. (John pic)

… to re-group at the St Kilda children’s playground. From there we climbed up to Kettle Park Road to descend again to cross Kettle Park behind the impressively large rear of the indoor Ice Rink. We turned down Moana Rua Rd, crossed Victoria Road to go down Moreau St (was it?) (9 km) to turn left into Richardson St (was it?) (10 km) and make our way back to cross Forbury Road and reach Albert St again. 10.5 km all told. Not too bad.
Then, under Elaine’s bad growing influence, a large number of us resorted to the Salt Cafe for the customary leisurely and companionable coffee or what have you before returning to the cars. Thanks, Liz and Dawn. You done good. – Ian.
12. 9/5/2012. Hikers. St Clair beach walk. Easy. Leaders: Betty and Jim.
11. 27/7/2011. Hikers. St Clair. John Wilson Drive  Lawyers Head and Beach Walk. Easy. Leaders: Lance and Lois.
10. 24/3/2010. Hikers. St Clair. Beach Walk. Lawyers Head. Easy. Leaders: Elaine and Jean.
9. 29/7/2009. Hikers. St Clair. Beach Walk. Lawyers Head. Easy. Leaders: Les and Margaret
8. 28/1/2009. St Clair Beach Walk. Leaders: Lance and Lois
7. 11/10/2006. St Clair – Lawyers Head beach walk. Easy. Leaders: Jim and Thelma
6. 31/8/2005. Hikers. St Clair: beach walk to Tomahawk/Lawyers Head Leaders: Chris, Jean.
5. 23/8/2000. St Clair – Tomahawk – Smaills Beach. Leaders:  Betty B, Eleanor B, Evelyn M
4. 5/4/2000 St Clair – Kew. Street walk Leaders: Colleen, Bev H
3. 12/5/1999. St Clair: beach walk to Tomahawk/Lawyers Head Leaders: Daphne, Margaret, Betty
2. 12/3/1997. St. Clair to Tomahawk Beach. Leaders: Denise, Margaret D, Jean.
1. 15/11/1995. Beach Walk – St Clair to Tomahawk. Leaders: Peg A, Peggy M.

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Aug 08 2019

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Aug 07 2019

Lee Stream Road Ramble, Scorgies Farm

Published by under Both Hikers & Trampers

24 km from car park.
6. 7/8/2019. Both. Scorgies Farm. Leaders: Jan Y, Peter D, Jill R.
Hikers  – Scorgies Farm

After morning tea with the trampers, a group of 21 hikers carried on down the valley and on to Scorgies Farm.  The first part over the farm land was a bit wet, but Ok to walk on.   However, as we progressed further on the farm track, the muddy spots became more and more frequent.  My contact had told me ‘the track was a bit muddy, but just skirt around these areas’.  That was the understatement of the year – there was no bypassing the mud and we had to wade through which was heavy going.   Got as far as a pile of baleage, and decided to call a halt. Probably only a km or so short of the big shed, which was our preferred spot for lunch, but mud was getting progressively worse.  Some of the group lunched amongst the baleage, and the rest of the group headed up the hill a little to find a sheltered spot in the lee of the hill.  Met up again and returned the same way (same mud!!) back to the cars. It was certainly a pleasure to get back on to the Traquair land (which constitutes the first few ks of this tramp) and onto their well maintained gravel road.  One bonus – no one slipped over on the mud.  Jan and Peter.

Trampers – Scorgies Farm.


Trampers’ route map. Courtesy Phil K.

After a combined group morning tea by  Lee Stream, …

G.2nd -- A great spot for morn. Smokoc

A great spot for morn. Smoko. (Gordon pic and caption.)

… 21 trampers headed for the hills!

G.3rd -- Trampers break off from Hikers.Pretty steepc

Trampers break off from Hikers.Pretty steep. (Gordon pic and caption.)

We climbed up a face between magnificent rocks,

P.2.1. Hello Hikers down therec

Hello Hikers down there. (Phil K. pic and caption.)

H.1.Looking down Lee Streamc

Looking down Lee Stream. (Helen pic and caption.)

walked over rolling hills bearing pockets of snow,

M.Hardy TRAMPERS in the snow todayc

Hardy TRAMPERS in the snow today. (Margreet pic and caption.)

then, taking a more circuitous route than planned,

G.6th -- Down & upc

Down & up. (Gordon pic and caption.)

reached the normally small tributary of Lee Stream at the bottom of Roundhill.

G.7th -- Bit deeper,swifter and slippery than looksc

Bit deeper,swifter and slippery than looks. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Today it was much higher than expected due to snow melt over the last couple of days. We decided it would be unsafe to walk through the creek  – just too much water swiftly flowing  over the slippery rocks!!!! Instead we enjoyed our lunch on rocky outcrops, looking across to the Allandale  homestead surrounds,

H.2.Lunch in the rocks with leader Jill mapping out a change of directionc.

Lunch in the rocks with leader Jill mapping out a change of direction.. (Helen pic and caption.)

then returned to the Lee Stream Track by a different route.

H.3.On the way back to the carsc

On the way back to the cars. (Helen pic and caption.)

Distance walked : 16 km. – Jill.

5. 25/6/2014 Hikers.  Lee Stream Ramble, Scorgies Farm. Easy. Leaders: Arthur and Barbara.

GPS of route. We walked 12.66 km. Walking time 2.56 hrs; Fastest 4.6 km/hr; Slowest 3.95 km/hr.

I now title this tramp Lee Stream Road Ramble. The route is an actual road at each end, connecting Mahinerangi and Black Rock Roads, joined by a paper road in the middle, having reverted to a barely discernible track across paddocks marked only by  occasion ditch crossings, with one actual bridge over a more sizeable Lee Stream tributary.

26 Hikers parked outside the Mahinerangi end of the road, to be surprised by this notice on the gate.

The mind boggles. (John pic)

The mind boggles. (John pic)

At this stage of course, the road was well paved.

Start (John pic)

Start (John pic)

With a winter 9.30 a.m. start and quite a bit of a drive up SH87, the leaders stopped us early for morning tea on the following slope.

MT Panorama

An iPhone Panorama attempt of the tea break, not a patch on John’s much better pixelated lunch one. Apologies to the ones I caught bending over.

Paddocks were still saturated from frosts and rain. Today was astonishingly warm with a drying wind, but not enough to even begin to dry the ground out. Ditch crossings, although well gravelled (under the mud, if you could find it), were atrociously, extraordinarily, slipperarily muddy. Not everyone got through without a fall.

Mud (John pic)

Mud, glorious mud. Here you can see only the beginning. Down at the ditch crossing, it was hard to get through without a fall.  There were several of this ditches to negotiate. Paddocks were sodden. (John pic)

Here is the bridge separating Traquair from Scorgies’ Stations.

Bridge (John pic)

The Bridge (John pic. Hey! Well done, John.)

We trudged on, and on. A kilometre or two short of the end, about half a dozen of us had had enough and made their lunch stop there, leaving the rest of us to go on to the big implement shed. Its contents were well splattered with bird droppings, but each of us managed to find a seat acceptable to them.

Lunch panorama (John pic)

Lunch panorama (John pic. A much better panorama.)

Or if you prefer it, here is a video John took of us.

Retracing our route we found to be just as muddy, we several of us knowing we had done one of the longer tramps that the Hikers attempt. It was a good day out. While the rest of the country seems to have suffered heavy downpours, we benefited from the warmth of the storm’s margin. Thanks to Arthur and Barbara for thoughtful careful leadership. – Ian

4. 23/11/2011. Hikers. Lee Stream Ramble, Scorgies Farm. Easy. Leaders: George, Fred.

(Remembered for cattle alarm.)
3. 7/5/2008 Both. Lee Stream Ramble, Scorgies Farm. Easy. Leaders: George, Doug M

Great farmland trip. Turn down 1st Mahinerangi Rd. Cross Lee Stream and park car park up other side. RH. Thru gate. Meander along well formed road on true right of stream. Lunch at Hay barn en route. Return same way.
The threatened rain did not spill, the intimated sun did not shine, the breezes didn’t waft, but twenty four trepid trampers (hardly ‘intrepid’ on this straightforward walk ) turned out to enjoy
the calm reaches of Lee Streem (sic: an in-joke for the “boys and their toys” fellows ), and the pleasant pastures, and beautiful big barn of Scorgie’s Farm. Well, not quite straightforward, as, after arranging ourselves on tiers of a rocky outcrop for morning tea (see photo), and crossing a decrepit bridge which leader George kept promising us would collapse just for us, there suddenly appeared, blocking our way, a vast vale of choumollier and turnips. A pincer movement was deployed and we eventually fought our way to the battle front again.
An early morning tea is rightly followed by an early lunch, and what better restaurant seats than the dry hay bales, pallets and timbers and butcher’s chopping block of the large, open barn where the smell of hay was incense to the nostrils of country wanderers.

Mushrooms were unfortunately not on the menu though Doug had picked enough for a good tasting.

Our return was by the same route, except that we skirted the western front of the turnip ground this time.

The various pedometers all seemed to tell us that we had traversed circa 15kms of this fertile and well-kept farm, (without seeing a single human movement), and several remarks were heard to the effect that if the speaker were to want to buy a farm, this would be the one. The only sad note to the day was at the carpark meeting point where we observed a minute silence for the passing of Mary Maxwell earlier in the week. – Bob

2. 5/3/2008. Both. Lee Stream Valley and Scorgies Farm. Easy. Leaders: Bob H, Molly.
1. 2/8/2006 Both. Lee Stream ramble, Scorgies Farm. Easy. Leaders: Bob & Evelyn, Lesley G, Eleanor W
Great farmland trip. Turn down 1st Mahinerangi Rd. Cross Lee Stream and park car park up other side. RH. Thru gate. Meander along well formed road on true right of stream. Lunch at Hay barn en route.  Return same way.

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Jul 31 2019

Schoolhouse, Tunnels, McRaes circuit.

Published by under Both Hikers & Trampers

Whare Flat School and Surrounds History
9. 31/7/2019. Trampers. Schoolhouse, Tunnels, Racemans.

Route map, courtesy Phil K.

Tunnel and Racemans tracks 31/7/19

The threatening weather report did not deter 16 keen trampers’ from turning up ready for a walk. The trip to Mt Watkins was postponed because of some of the track’s lack of shelter to the elements. It was decided to walk the tunnel and raceman’s tracks because they are in the shelter of native bush.

We parked and left from the school house area on Whare flat road. The tracks were in very good condition but a bit wet and muddy in places.

G.3rd -- That was a tricky bitc

That was a tricky bit. (Gordon pic and caption.)

G.5th photo -- Careful Don’t slipc

Careful Don’t slip. (Gordon pic and caption.)

It was pleasant walking along the track adjacent to the old water race. Morning tea was appropriately had along from one of the tunnels.

G.2nd -- Putting the world right over morn. Teac

Putting the world right over morn. Tea. (Gordon pic and caption.)

The Silverstream water race was built between  1877 and 1881 and consisted of nearly 30km of open races, sluices, tunnels and weirs. In 1920 a pump was installed. Later pipes were partially in stalled with little success. It was abandoned in the 1960s.

We continued on walking briskly to ensure that we all kept warm. The native bush with all its array of greens was a pleasant sight. Lunch was had just before a creek crossing that could have been more challenging to cross!

G.4th -- A perfect lunch spotc

A perfect lunch spot. (Gordon pic and caption.)

We headed back using a detour to avoid a loop on racemans. The bird song was pleasant on some parts of the tracks. The sun even briefly shone through the trees at times.

G.6th -- Still smilling.Heading to coffee stopc

Still smilling. Heading to coffee stop. (Gordon pic and caption.)

On reaching our cars, after a few creek crossings,

G.8th -- 1st @ last obstaclec

1st & last obstacle. (Gordon pic and caption.)

we had completed 15.8 km. A good walk with plenty of cool fresh air! The temperature was 5 degrees when we returned to Mosgiel.

H.3.Coffee at Blendc

Coffee at Blend. (Helen pic and caption.)

It was a pleasure to share Helen’s birthday with coffee and cakes at Blend. – Dave

8. 23/9/2015. Trampers. Schoolhouse, Tunnels, Racemans.
 As the destination for the designated tramp [Swampy via Morrisons & poleline track] was covered in wet cloud, we decided at the carpark to just walk the Tunnels/Racemans tracks instead. This turned out to be a good choice, as the weather was fine all day in the valley.
Of the eight trampers that came along, two had never been in this area before, so it was a good opportunity for them to see the work that was done on this impressive old water race.
We had morning tea at the top in the pines, & then walked along to almost the junction with Little Coal track, where we stopped for an early lunch.
Lunch (Ken pic)

The pic is of our lunch stop (Ken pic and caption)

As I was recovering from two weeks off with a very sore back, [damaged while gardening — be aware, it’s not good for your health !!] I decided that I was going to turn back here, so I informed the others of my intentions, & they all said they would be happy to go back with me. [7km at this point]. So we retraced our steps back to the cars at the old school house, clearing some storm damaged vegetation as we went along.

The track was in mostly dry condition with only the odd muddy patch to contend with, & the creek crossings were very shallow.
walked 14km
3h 15mins moving.
climbed 147m. – Ken.

15/4/2015. Trampers. Pumphouse, Tunnels, McRaes
Walked 9.6km
2 1/2hrs moving time
climbed 275m
6 hardy trampers turned up to do the walk into the Tunnels & Silverstream tracks, which was, due to the weather conditions, chosen as an alternative to the Leith Saddle tramp scheduled for today.
We parked by the school house, & made our way up to the start of the Tunnels Track, but on arriving at the creek crossing, we found it to be far too deep & swift to attempt a crossing without getting wet feet. So we made the decision to go in from the pump house at the Whare Flat car park. We drove back down the road & restarted the tramp along the fence beside the Silverstream, & up & over the short but quite steep climb, to the grass are at the upstream end of the swing bridge. We turned up the first track just past here, & made our way up onto the Tunnels Track, then back towards the school house, to the start where we couldn’t cross the stream earlier. Then we retraced our steps, & walked all the way along to the creek crossing just past the Racemans Hut that has the tree down across it. This is the creek crossing with the ropes on the other side to help with the climb up the bank. here the water was also too deep, & swift to attempt a crossing, so we had a look at the Tunnels weir, then walked back out, & down an unmarked track leading down to the picnic table on the grass area beside the Silverstream. We had lunch here, then walked back out to the cars.
Conditions in the bush were sheltered, not very wet under foot, & very few muddy patches, so everybody enjoyed the walk. – Ken
7. 24/7/2013 Trampers. Trampers. Schoolhouse, Tunnels, McRaes Weir, return.
On a cool but what turned out to be a very nice winters day, 5 trampers took to the Tunnels /Racemans Tracks. However, we didn’t get very far before we struck the first of many snow damaged trees across the track. This made for very slow going, & we didn’t even manage to get to the favourite morning tea spot in the pines before it was time to stop for a cuppa.  We met up with some guys who were supposed to be track clearing, from the DCC, but from what we could see, they weren’t doing much good. There are some VERY LARGE trees down across the track, which require some careful negotiation to get past.
Some of the fallen trees across the track. There is a large Rimu in there somewhere

Some of the fallen trees across the track. There is a large Rimu in there somewhere. (Ken pic and caption)

Also, looking very sad is the old Racemans shed.


Racemans Shed (Ken pic and caption)

It has a tree which has fallen right across the top of it, & the roof has completely gone.


Roof gone. (Ken pic)

We only got as far as the creek crossing with the rope on it, when we gave up the struggle, as the creek was choked with fallen trees, & we could hardly see the other side where you climb out of the creek with the help of the rope. We backtracked to an unmarked side track down to the Silverstream, where we found a picnic table to have lunch at.

Lunch at the picnic table.

Lunch at the picnic table.

It was then a short walk out to the pumphouse at Whare Flat, & then back up the road to the cars at the old School house. Distance 8.2km, ave 4km/hr. – Ken.

6. 14/11/2012. Hikers. Schoolhouse, Tunnels, McRaes Weir, Racemans, Pumphouse, return by road. Leaders: Fred, Elaine.
22 of us made a large group. Great. We had our morning cuppa at the top of the Tunnels track.

Morning Tea in the pines at the top of the Tunnels Track.

We made our way back on down to join with the McRaes Track and along to the weir. At this point, Dorothy, recovering from a hip injury wisely declined the steep rope-assisted climb up the further back of the stream and accompanied by three others, returned back the way we had come and down from there by a link track to meet us later at the Pumphouse.

The rest of us carried on around the McRaes track to lunch at the point where it links with the Racemans.

About to set off after lunch.

Down the Racemans and on to the swing bridge. Some elected to cross it and risk the depth of the water at the Pumphouse ford but most went by more hilly track along the Silverstream true left.

Up to that point, we were well led by Fred and Elaine, but from here on it was ‘Brown’s Cows’ back up the r0ad to the cars. We were all back home in time for afternoon tea.

Twenty-two. Whew! An impressive turn-out. – Ian.

5. 29/2/2012. Trampers. Schoolhouse, Tunnels, McRaes Weir, Racemans, return by Tunnels.

GPS of route, courtesy Ken.

Taieri Scenic reserve was unavailable, due to bulldozers working on a road. We chose a short Tunnels tramp instead, as heavy rain was forecast for the afternoon.

We stopped along Racemans for the morning tea break.

We continued on. At the short water-race pipe point, we dared some of the newer members to crouch their way through it. Amazingly, three took up the dare. Bravo. Then it was on past McRaes weir. The vertical climb out from the stream bed gets no easier for the writer, feeling his arthritic age.
Reaching the end of the McRaes side gully (to the Silverstream proper), we turned back down onto the first part of the Raceman’s track where it climbs up to reach the water-race. Had a look at the Pump-house’s intake weir. Climbed back up to the Raceman’s by the track near the swing-bridge, turning right at the top to climb back up the Tunnels’ hill.

Lunch back at the top of Tunnels track.

Lunch was slightly early, as we remained conscious of the forecast rain. We felt its first drops as we finished lunch. We heard the patter of rain on the leaves above us as we made our way back down the hill. We emerged onto the road by the alternative exit and walked back up to the cars with only the lightest of rain sprinkling us. A nice dry morning out, on a nice dry track in nice bush. – Ian.
4. 28/9/2011. Hikers. Pumphouse, road, Schoolhouse, Tunnels, McRaes Weir, Racemans, Pumphouse . Leaders: Peter and Wendy.
3. 6/10/2010. Both. Schoolhouse, Tunnels, McRaes Weir, Racemans, Pumphouse, return road. Leaders: Ian, Ken.

GPS of trip route, courtesy Ken. (Click to see full pic)

21 of us started the Tunnels track just up from the old Schoolhouse and down the track a little were soon admiring a railed bridge over a ditch and a new track complete with steps around the top of a large slip, put in by Neil and his group of track repairers. The track gently climbed to its top point over the race tunnel where we stopped for an early morning tea under pines, resting on their bed of thick pine needles.

Tea break, top of tunnels hill. (Ken pic)

Tea break 2

The track had been beautifully cleared of trunks and debris brought down by a recent storm and we quietly ambled along the long stretch that eventually took us past the old Racemans Hut to the broken-down McRaes Weir. Across the stream we were confronted with a washed out vertical bank with only a knotted rope and some steep cut-out steps, but with the bottom one now missing. There ensued much pushing and pulling, and slipping and collapsing as we made our various ways up to the top of the bank.

Steep climb out of McRaes Stream

Then it was plain sailing (apt metaphor?) again out of the large McRae’s gully till we reached the junction with the Racemans where we stopped for an early lunch.

Lunch at junction McRaes and Racemans. (Ken pic)

From there we descended the Racemans to pass the old Silverstream weir and inspected the weir from which water is now piped to the pumphouse. We elected to return via the swing-bridge because there had been a tree-fall over the true-left track. Crossing the ford at the other end was not the happiest part of the walk for some. Then it was just 2 km back up the road to the cars parked at the old Schoolhouse. The day was perfectly calm with much of it sunny, if not hot. It had been a good day. – Ian
2. 7/11/2001. Combined. Tunnel – Racemans Tracks. Leaders: Bob H, Winifred, George.
1. 21/6/1989 Whare Flat Pottery. Pine walk. Peggy A, Helen W, Daphne

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Jul 31 2019

Woodhaugh Gardens and Leith

Published by under Hikers,Year round

19 km from car park.

9. 31/7/2019. Hikers. Treasures around the Leith. Jenni and Judy D.

Despite a rather iffy forecast, 18 hikers met to explore “Treasures around the Leith”. We met our Brighton contingent at the Malvern Street Bridge and proceeded to an early morning tea at the Woodhaugh Gardens. So off we set though the Botanic Gardens admiring the recent rose pruning, through the Clive Lister Garden, along and up through the terraced gardens and finally up a gentle track which lead us to Lovelock Avenue.

The weather held as we investigated the historic bell in the University’s quadrangle. This bell was part of the New Zealand Exhibition in 1865, before being moved to the stock exchange building in 1868. The full story was captured by the ODT on 3 February 2019.


(Jenni pic.)

From there, we ventured to the Otago Business School to view the outstanding architecture and the very cool photographic exhibition “Cuba through Kiwi eyes”. There was a great variety of excellent photographs, and we were fortunate to be able to see this. The exhibition closes on 2 August.


(Jenni pic.)


(Jenni pic.)

We meandered along the side of the Leith, noting the exciting new $26m Music, Theatre and Performing Arts Development and checked out the new Leith bridge which links Dunedin with Port Chalmers for both walkers and cyclists.


(Jenni pic.)

We returned to the seating area outside the Stadium for lunch, which turned out to be an excellent shelter from the nippy Southerly.


(Jenni pic.)

Back along Union Street, as we passed the Multi Disciplinary Unit we talked about the world famous  “Dunedin Study” and the amazing facilities they are housed in. Time was on our side so we entered the Student Union building and the Information Services building which has been cleverly joined by “The Link”. We marvelled at the space that the students enjoy today and the architectural features including a circular internal Oamaru stone wall. A highlight of the tramp was seeing the developments to alleviate flooding in the area and preservation of the St David bridge.


(Jenni pic.)

How fortunate we are to have so many treasures around the Leith.

Distance travelled around 9kms. Coffee and cake at Village Green. Special thanks to Judy Dennison for being “Tail End Charlie”. Today’s leader: Jenni Wright.

8. 28/11/2018. Hikers. Gardens / Leith Street. E.  Leaders: Judy and Elaine.

Nike map of route, courtesy Ian.

After an overdose of rain, 23 hikers and four ramblers abandoned the planned Flagstaff/Swampy hike in favour of the Botanic Gardens area.

We parked in the gardens car park and wandered by various paths to the Rhododendron dell for a leisurely morning tea. The sun shone and the birds sang.

(Judy K. pic.)

 Eventually we headed off over the road, into the northern cemetery where a successful search was made for Elaine’s ancestors.

(Judy K. pic.)

  Leaving them undisturbed we headed off down the hill, and the steps, to Logan Park and around to the stadium for lunch. (Quite a relief to have toilets available at both morning tea and lunch!)

Lunch time. (Adrienne M pic and caption.)

  The sun shone and a one-legged seagull enjoyed lots of titbits.  From here it was a stroll across the road into Anzac Ave, then across to follow the Leith up through the University

(Judy K. pic.) [Inserted only at Judy’s request. Ed.]

(Judy K. pic.)

and so back to the Gardens, coffee, and the cars.

Judy and Elaine

7. 15/8/2018. Hikers. Gardens / Leith Street. E.  Leaders: Dawn and Pam.

Edinburgh stone memorial. (Clive pic and caption.)


Calm day on the harbour. (Clive pic and caption.)

Après déjeuner scene, Upper Garden. (Ian pic and caption.)

Nancy Syme fountain, Botanic Garden. (Lester told of Nancy Syme long time Mosgiel resident who dontated the fountain. (Clive pic and caption.)

6. 28/6/2017. Hikers. Leith walk Mouth to Woodhaugh. E. Leaders: Jan Y and Jan B.

Calm yachts where parked cars. (Ian pic and caption.

Albatross wing bridge. Wired head and body difficult to discern. (Ian pic and caption.)

Woodhaugh lunch. (Ian pic and caption.)

Grafitti on lower Leith concrete way. (Ian pic and caption.)

5. 25/6/2008. Hikers. Woodhaugh – Botanic Gardens. Easy. Leaders: Marjorie, Carmel.
4. 17/7/2002. Alt. Bullock Track – Woodhaugh Gardens. Leaders:Denise, Shirley R, Bev McI
3. 12/9/2001. Alt. Bullock Track, Woodhaugh Gardens. Leaders: Arthur & Barbara L, Winifred
2. 27/10/1999. Woodhaugh, Leith Valley. Leaders: Mary Y, Denise, Betty.
1. 15/5/1996. Woodhaugh, Leith Valley. (Alternative to Quoin Point.) Average. Leaders: Daphne, Mary Y

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Jul 24 2019

Taieri Plains Tramps

Published by under Uncategorized

8. 24/7/2019. All. Doug’s 90th. Alan Scurrs, Riverside Road. Leader: Alan.
24 th July proved to be a special day.
The Weather frosty cold to start  ,then clear calm and pristine. An enthusiastic group of tramping club members 54 out walking in total.Some even cycled down from the Bush Road carpark to Alan and Kerry’s home. Here we were greeted by inquisitive Llamas.
We spread out through boggy farmlands with the bonus of country smells to accompany us on the way.

G.2nd -- On the way down Owhiro Stream

On the way down Owhiro Stream. (Gordon pic and caption.)

We followed some of the Taieri waterways onto the floodbanks which have over the years saved farmlands from being completely destroyed/submerged in floods. Alan had some photos of the extensiveness of the flooding over the years.

G.3rd -- A catchup were the Owhiro Stream enters the Taieri cRiver

A catchup were the Owhiro Stream enters the Taieri River. (Gordon pic and caption.)

C.3) the control gate into the ponding areac

the control gate into the ponding area. (Clive pic and caption.)

Morning tea was held beside the Mill stream pump house. The stream flows into the Taieri river. The river was full and very discoloured.

C.4) Morning tea Mill Creekc

Morning tea Mill Creek. (Clive pic and caption.)

From here we split into smaller groups depending how far people wanted to walk back to the party house.
Overall walking distances ranged from the Ramblers’ ramble to the longest distance approx 10 kms and then a ride home for them.

G.5th -- Heading towards South Fork farmc

Heading towards South Fork farm. (Gordon pic and caption.)

G.6th -- Alan suppling information on slipway @ flood gatesc

Alan suppyling information on slipway at flood gates. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Alan had vehicles placed along the way to get all home by about 1 pm to be together to share Doug’s 90th birthday lunch. A real party lunch shared by all including some of our members who like to be involved with activities but not always able to join us on some of our weekly outings.

G.7th -- Lunch back at homesteadc

Lunch back at homestead. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Helen Morris spoke about Doug


Helen speaks about Doug.

– out most Wednesdays a very busy man with an immaculate house and garden, a perfect gentleman, and a great bagpiper and ball room dancer. Always wearing shorts!


Doug. (Helen pic and caption.)

A big Thankyou to Alan and Kerry hosts extraordinare for providing an idyllic location and perfect weather (hardly a breathe of wind ). We wish them well for their overseas trip next week and look forward to hearing of their experiences.
Jill on behalf of the club.

7. 22/10/2014. Hikers. Dukes Road, Stop Bank. E. Leaders: Peter, Lesley.

(Add 100m to kms, as turned GPS on late!) Route: Riverside Rd, School Rd, Taieri Flood bank, Siverstream Flood bank, McKay reserve, paper road.

Twenty-five of us started along Riverside Rd from cars parked at the end of Dukes Rd. Turned left into School Rd. At about the 3.3km mark (a tiny swiggle on the map) Peter let us in through a combination-locked gate to the Dunedin Model Aero Club site and welcome bench seats …


Cuppa at Dunedin Model Aero Club site on School Road.

… upon which to enjoy morning tea. One of us preferred …

An alternative hat

An alternative hat

… sitting on a table, rather fancying himself in his newly acquired piece of headgear.

As we were walking back out onto School Road, Leader Peter told us in interesting detail the history of the road, originally the Mosgiel-Outram railway route. The raised bridge over the Taieri River necessitated a fully-laden passenger train locomotive stopping and waiting for twenty minutes to get up  enough steam to get its load up and over. School Road was the most difficult part of the line to construct. Hector told us of the need of a foundation of flaxes to first undergird the permanent way over the Taieri swamp. At road’s end, we followed the old rail bed as it veered right and led us to the Taieri River flood bank, alongside an interesting flood gate structure, designed to release flood waters into the flood plain alongside when needed to alleviate flooding elsewhere.

Making our way alongside the river, we had to negotiate a tricky fence, armed with live electric (fortunately the stretchy kind) wires on either side. Eventually, we were able to carry on. Arriving near the river’s confluence with the Silverstream, we perched ourselves alongside  the latter …




… for a leisurely lunch. Fortunately the wind abated for the while we were there.

Up and along the Silverstream’s  true right floodbank, under the Riverside Road bridge and on to a heavy flood gates structure protecting a large drainage ditch at the lower corner of the McKay’s Triangle Wildlife Management Reserve from flooding back.

We walked along the ditch’s true left through luxuriant spring grass freshly tracked by some vehicle’s wheels, a boon denied the leaders who had to brave the  reserve completely lacking track indicators to keep them free of boggy underground. Along the way we passed by

Lake Kate

Lake Kate

a lake, adding to the scenic variety of the reserve. We persisted up along the aforesaid ditch, seeking yet another lake that unfortunately failed to materialize. So back down to enter in via a mai-mai to circumvent the beautiful Lake Kate, …


Lake Kate

… unseeable  from the track. Thank you leaders, for finding the way into this hidden jewel for us.

We were then cleverly led by twisting track and footbridge out to the other major track, this one bordering yet another drainage ditch set at right angles to the other. This led us in straight alignment with Duke Road, virtually its paper road extension, back up to the cars again.

Thanks to Peter and Lesley for a carefully planned trip with the McKay’s Reserve as a surprising cherry at the end. – Ian.

 6. 4/8/2010. Both. Gladfield Road, School Road, Stop Bank, ret. E. Leaders: Bev, Ian.

GPS of route (Courtesy, Ken)

We parked the cars at the end of Dukes Road and made our way along Gladfield road, stopping at School Road for morning tea. Down School Road and crossing Riverside Road onto the Outram railway embankment to the Taieri River. Turning left, we followed the river down stream, keeping on the flood bank much of the way.

Continuing along the stop bank and bypassing Lindsay Road, we crossed over a flood gate immediately adjacent to the confluence of the Taieri and Silverstream rivers.

Shutting the stock gate on the flood gate. (Ken pic)

It was time for lunch, so we went down to shelter, sit and eat around a pile of bulldozed willow logs by the confluence.

Lunch1 (Ken pic)

Lunch2 (Ken pic)

Then it was up first one side, then the other of the Silverstream till we reached Gladfield Road and its pedestrian swing-bridge.

Bridge (Ken pic)

Then it was just back along Gladfield Road to the cars, and home.
A good day, with both groups together and 23 setting out. – Ian
5. 15/7/2009 Dukes Road, stop bank, School Road. Leaders: Marjorie, Peter.
4. 11/6/2008 Taieri Ramble from Dukes Road. Leaders:

Taieri in the winter. Who? Dot, Who? Margaret, Joyce, Lex, Arthur, Who?

A perfect winters day for the 20 hikers who parked their cars at the end of Dukes Rd to enjoy awalk on the roads and farmland on the Taieri Plains. We went along Gladfield Rd to School Rd where we found a spot to sit and have our welcome morning tea break. Off down School Rd for a short distance then on to farm land. Across paddocks, along stop banks, making the most of the beautiful sun and scenery which made this an especially enjoyable day out. Sat and had our lunch in a very pleasant spot amongst trees and near the Silverstream.

A Presidential munch. Peter

A Presidential munch. Peter

A Presidential pause

The ‘swing’ bridge

Then it was across more paddocks, over a ‘swing’ bridge and back to the cars. Not a hard hike but one everyone enjoyed very much. – Bev

3. 11/6/2008. Hikers. Dukes Road, Stop Bank, School Road. Easy. Leaders: Bob H, Bev H.

Park end Dukes Rd. Straight ahead SE to McKays Triangle Wildlife Management Reserve. (Seek permission for this part, although paper road.)

Turn Rt/SW by drainage ditch, across Taieri. Follow either of following alternatives:
1st Alt: Trampers. Carry on, cross Mosgiel/Outram Road, up hill, (seek permission for hill part) then left and down to Taieri upstream of bridge. Return down Taieri (Seek permissions, but probably not necessary) and back by reserve.
2nd Alt: Hikers. Turn left SE down to Taieri River flood gate. Followed river back along flood bank to Silverstream. Upstream to Riverside Rd and back to cars.
2. 4/7/2007. Both. Dukes Road, Stop Bank. easy. Leaders: George, Bob H, Les & Margaret, Bev H
1. 27/5/2003. Dukes Rd, Taieri. Triangle Wildlife Reserve. Stopbank

Taieri Reserve Sign

McKay’s Triangle Wildlife Management Reserve Sign

Small Lake

Small Lake, McKays Triangle Reserve, Mid-Taieri Plain

Taieri River

Taieri River

Flood Gates on Taieri Plain

Taieri River flood-gates, Mid-Taieri, designed to release flood waters onto flood plain.

Ditch gate

Drainage Ditch Gate by track as trampers return to cars

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Jul 17 2019

Sinclair Wetlands.

Published by under Hikers

Hori Sinclair and his wetlands’origin(1st paragraph only, of treatise linking its surrounds prehistorically with Kai Point Coal Mine)

Official Sinclair Wetlands website.

From car park, via Clarendon: abt 35 km.

3. 17/7/2019. Hikers. Sinclair Wetlands. E. Leaders: Lesley and Ian.

On a sunny winters day, with no wind, 36 hikers visited Sinclair Wetlands. The leaders had planned for Coordinator Glen Riley to first give an address but he was nowhere to be seen. So instead we morning-teaed at the headquarters.

C.2) Morning tea overlooking the wetlandsc

Morning tea overlooking the wetlands. (Clive pic and caption.)

Then having dutifully gold-coined the donation box, we entered the wetlands through the adjacent gate. A new (to us) boardwalk across marshland was an alternative to the still-there adjacent original path which it reentered further on.

Still further on, a short climb got us up onto a low island outcrop, which afforded a panorama of much of the wetlands. We lingered on this pleasant viewing spot, taking many photos of the marshland and the mirrored waters.

K.3.Up on the hillc

Up on the hill. (Kevin pic and caption.)

Eventually we reluctantly left to continue our walk.

Ahead, the larger Ram Hill, and an early 11.30 a.m. lunch, still bathed in windless sun, and again, excellent views.


Lunch. (Kevin pic and caption.)

Again, still slow to move, we started the descent,

C.3) lots of new plantingsc

lots of new plantings. (Clive pic and caption.)

and reached a spot where we met up with Glen Riley on his electric motorbike. He had forgotten the talk, but here on a slope with a view, was the ideal spot for it. He spoke of the plan for the area. The trust are concentrating on planting and eradicating pest species. Some birds were heard, but few were seen, well hidden in the marshland edges. He spoke too of the land’s history, originally drained and pumped dry, like so much else of the Taieri Plain, but re-flooded by Hori Sinclair to form the present  rich wildlife habitat.

The return walk was marred by a rising cold wind, but we were moving now, so not too bad. Back at the end of the boardwalk  an adjacent paddock afforded a good workout for the fitter ones

C.4) Contrast between farmland and wetlandc

Contrast between farmland and wetland. (Clive pic and caption.)

while the less active meandered back to the cars.

Of the three optional car routes, the leaders justified their choice of the (admittedly southerly) Clarendon option by designating Waihola’s Black Swan as the coffee stop, whither we now adjourned, with our attention cunningly caught opposite, the renowned local fish and chip shop temptation.

The mostly windless day and the location had made for a wonderful experience. – Lesley and Ian.

2. 15/6/2016. Sinclair Wetlands. E. Leaders: Jim and Betty.

Wetlands route map

Wetlands route map. Small island indicated by the 2 km mark. The loop marks the walk round Ram Island.

Today a group of 24 hikers were privileged to have a visit to an old stone house which is over 160 years old which is being lovingly restored by Margret & Alex Gillanders the current owners of this property at Maryhill.  Morning tea was consumed in the sun on the front steps of their newer residence.

Morning tea panorama.

Morning tea panorama.

Yes it was another sunny day and from Maryhill we travelled a further 5 kilometres to a visit to the Sinclair Wetlands.  At the Wetlands we were given a very inspirational introduction to the history, structure and objects of the Sinclair Wetlands by Glen Riley.

Attentive listening to an excellent address.

Attentive listening to an excellent address.

For the next 2.5 hours we had a very easy walk around the property

First viewing spot.

Panorama shot at first viewing spot, (at edge of farm, about 1.5 km point.)

2nd view spot

Panorama shot at 2nd viewing spot on the small island.

with a lunch stop at the far end of Ram Island.

Panorama view taken at end of Ram Island overlooking the site of the failed pumping station now replaced by a drain pipe.

Panorama view taken at end of Ram Island showing the failed pumping station remains now replaced by a drain pipe.

On our return from Ram Island we inspected the plant storage and propagation facility.  It was 2 o’clock when we departed the Wetlands for a coffee stop at the Black Swan Waihola.  Special thanks to  Margret & Alex Gillanders for having  the invasion at their place and Sarah who was resident in the old house …

Stone house.

Stone house.

… when we first made contact who made a real effort to show the group through this historic house. Also thanks to Glen Riley for the introduction to the Sinclair Wetlands.
We were very lucky with the weather. – Betty & Jim Finnie

1. 5/9/1990. Berwick Forest and Sinclair Wetlands. Leaders: Nancy, Dot B.

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Jul 17 2019

McNally Walkway

No. 83 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “McNally Track, Milton. Year Round”

44 km from car-park.
Access: Milton M 91km ret. Opposite Presbyterian Church, turn left at Ossian Street and follow on down Moore and Tokoiti Streets to Cemetery near which is the entrance to the McNally Walkway. Park cars by the side of the road.

Combined potential.

17/7/2019. Trampers. McNally Track. Leader: Eleanore.

The McNally track is located on the hill behind Fairfax Cemetery Tokoiti Milton.  The track opened in 1980, was named after a well respected Policeman from Milton.  Built and maintained by members of the Milton Rotary Club.

On a chilly clear morning 5 cars headed south to Milton and parked by the Cemetery.
Off up the hill we did trot at 10.05am for 15 minutes(seemed longer) till we came to the seat, where we enjoyed smoko in the sun looking down towards the town.

P.1. A well earned morning tea with a viewc

A well earned morning tea with a view. (Phil pic and caption.)

Onwards and upwards following fence lines, through gates, over stiles, up paddocks, round a loop of bush where totara, fushia, Mahoe, miro and Matai we’re thriving and the odd gully (in places white with frost)

G.3rd -- Still climbingc

Still climbing. (Gordon pic and caption.)

until the line of macrocarpa led us to the summit, arriving at 11.45am.

After admiring the views of the entire district, the ocean, and checking out places on the info. table.

G.4th -- Finally the summit looking back over Miltonc

Finally the summit looking back over Milton. (Gordon pic and caption.)

We were pleased to head into the hay barn, out of the thin breeze to have lunch and a yarn.

G.5th -- Lunch break in the warm hay-barncJPG

Lunch break in the warm hay-barn. (Gordon pic and caption.)

We headed down the open ridge following painted poles , then over a little stream up through a ecucalyptus grove, up another steep paddock, where we rejoined the track we came up.

Although this track is  only about 7km and takes a couple of hours or so, it is a good workout.  Today we had 20 out.  McNally being a new walk for 12 of our members.

We went down town to Kelly’s kitchen for our coffee and cake—joined by our 3 ice cream lickers.

G.8th -- Kellys Café; with some choosing Massive icecreamsc

Kellys Café; with some choosing Massive icecreams. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Good company, good friends another good Wednesday tramp enjoyed by all.  Eleanore

16. 28/2/2018. Hikers. McNally Walkway. M. Leaders: Bob and Lesley.

Route map, courtesy Ian.

This was the walk up the hill we were all expecting it was the other three that were unexpected! (Clive pic and caption.)

The high point conquered by Ian. (Clive pic and caption.)

Paradise revisited. – Milton. (Clive pic and caption.)

Lunch at the the trig point with views to the Blue Mountains


15. 4/5/2016. Both. McNally Walkway. Leaders: Jennifer, Dawn.

Morning Tea. (Helen pic and caption)

Morning Tea. (Helen pic and caption)

Lunch. (Margreet pic)

Lunch. (Margreet pic)

Margreet pic.

Sign. (Margreet pic)

Cold drinks at Waihola. (Helen pic and caption)

Cold drinks at Waihola. (Helen pic and caption)

14. 14/5/2014. Trampers. McNally Walkway.

GPS of McNally Walkway, courtesy Ken. We walked about 8 1/2 km. Climbed 476 mtrs. – Ken.

Wednesday morning, we burst out of the Taieri Valley mist into sunshine about 4 kms north of Milton and headed to the hills that lie between the coast and Milton cemetery.

McNally Track (which opened in 1980) took us up along the fence-line past the sheep, and further up past orange guide poles and over stiles to a well-placed seat, offering a panoramic view across Milton (and morning tea).  Continuing upwards we had the choice of a native bush track or ‘open’ track and opted for the former which presented some mud slipping and sliding.  None of this mattered, as through this part the birds’ songs rang through the trees; just beautiful.

Further on and up to the trig and sun-dial where at the top there was an awesome 360 degrees view which encouraged us to a further amble around the area and lunch under cover of the haybarn.

Lunch at the top of the track. (Ken pic and caption)

Lunch at the top of the track. (Ken pic and caption)

En route, a couple of us slipped and brought mud back to the car in places other than our boots….. but while parts of this track tested our lung capacity, the varied nature of the well-kept track made it a very pleasant tramp of Medium level, taking about two to 2 1/2 hours’ walking time. – Neil & Carol

12. 8/2/2012. Trampers. McNally Walkway.

Morning Tea on McNally Track. (Ken pic and caption)

Milton from morning tea stop. (Ken pic and caption)

Lunch stop and view from the top of the track. (Ken pic and caption)

The plane table at the lookout at the top of the hill.

11.3/12/2008. McNally Walkway. Leaders: George, Dot B, Glenis

There had been no recce as of course it was a track well-remembered by many of us – not. Memories fade as we age. We started off well, climbing steeply through a couple of paddocks to morning tea on a steep slope with good views.

Our President's big strides

Our President’s big strides

A little further up, we were faced with a choice of direction around the top loop. We chose “main track” rather than “loop”, which resulted in us travelling anti-clockwise. Later on, on crossing a styled fence into bush, we found a track sign arrowed only backwards! What to do? Thinking the bush track must wrong for us, we came back out and pushed further up on open grass. But when we eventually reached the crest of the slope,

A breather stop

A breather stop

we were able to pick out some yellow track-poles a long way down on our left that indicating where that bush track emerged from the bush again. Ah well… So it was all the way down to rejoin the track in order to then climb back up on the other side of the gully to eventually reach the lookout and our lunch stop.
There was a great view. Signposts there helped clarify matters a bit, so with more enlightenment, and renewed confidence, we continued on our anti-clockwise loop, bravely ignoring now, any reverse-indicating arrows, and so arrived back at the loop’s stem.
There were 19 of us, and there was plenty of time so were able to unhurriedly manage the many steep bits. The weather was fine and it was good being all together. – Ian.

10. 8/9/2004. Both. McNally Track. Medium. Jim & Thelma, Evelyn C, Lance, Ria L

Lower McNally Walkway.

Lower McNally Walkway. Overlooking Milton. Recognizable in foreground: Helen, Evelyn, Lex.

9. 1/5/2002 Combined. McNallys Track. Medium. Leaders: Catherine, Colleen, Ria L
8. 27/2/2002. Alt. McNallys Track, Milton. Medium. Leaders: Les W, Ray and Diana.
7. 12/7/2000 McNallys – Track. Milton. Leaders: Peggy M, Denise, Evelyn M
6. 21/7/1999. McNally Track, Milton. Leaders: Barbara McC, Sabina, Doug J.
5. 10/9/1997. McNally’s Track, Milton. Leaders: Ray and Diana, Peggy M.
4. 26/2/1997. McNeilly Track. Leaders: Betty B, Mary Y
3. 13/3/1996. McNally Track. Leaders: Ivan and Bev, Doreen.
2. 22/3/1995 McNally Track. Easy. Leaders: Daphne, Peg C, Peggy M, Joan H
1. 15/7/1992 McNally Track. Milton. Easy. Leaders: Nancy, Peg C, Jack & Rosemary

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Jul 10 2019

Portobello, Hatchery Road, Quarantine Point.

Published by under Hikers

32 km from car park
9. 10/7/2019. Hikers. Portobello, Quarantine Point. Leaders: Bob and Kevin.

(Kevin pic.)


(Kevin pic.)


(Kevin pic.)


(Kevin pic.)

8. 24/9/2014. Hikers. Portobello, Hatchery Road. E. Leaders: Chris and Dot.








Quarantine Island

Quarantine Island

7. 29/8/2012 Hikers. Portobello, Aquarium. Leaders: Jim and Betty
6. 13/7/2011 Hikers. Portobello, Aquarium. Leaders: Arthur and Barbara.
5. 8/7/2009 Hikers. Portobello Aquarium. Leaders: Chris, Molly.
The Aquarium

The Aquarium

4. 25/11/2008 Hikers. Portobello Marine Studies Aquarium – Quarantine Point.

What a perfect winters day it was on Wed, absolutely ideal for our Portobello/Aquarium hike. The drive down the peninsula was a lovely start, with the harbour like a mill pond and the reflections superb. Parked the cars in a picnic area on the outskirts of Portobello and from there walked along some lanes, paths and walkways,some a bit slippery with frost, till we came to the Reserve by the Happy Hens Gallery.

A seat in the sun

A seat in the sun

Here we sat and enjoyed our morning tea in the sun. From there it was off down the road to the Aquarium. The views were outstanding so there were frequent stops to admire and photograph the wonderful scenery on such a glorious day. From the Aquarium there is a track to the the end of the point called Quarantine Point. A fantastic spot to sit back and relax while having our lunch. Scenery to admire and a ship being guided into the harbour at Port Chalmers to watch with interest. We made the most of the sun and lingered somewhat longer than usual soaking it up.

Harbour Cone from Quarantine Point

Finally though it was time to head on the homeward trail. Back to the Aquarium which we now went in to look around and have a comfort stop. Down the road back to Portobello and this time a quick visit to the Happy Hens Gallery. Along some other roads through Portobello and back to the cars. We all agreed we’d had a wonderful day out, thanks to the magnificent day, good company and the excellent hike planned by our leaders Chris and Jean.  – Bev
3. 20/8/2008. Hikers. Portobello Aquarium. Leaders: Chris, Jean A
2. 21/3/2007. Hikers. Portobello Aquarium. Easy. Leaders; Chris, Jean.
1. 23/11/2005. Hikers. Portobello Aquarium. Leaders: Chris, Jean A

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Jul 10 2019

Maori Peak, Split Rock

Published by under Trampers

Background Notes on Maori Peak
No. 15 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “Seacliff. Enchanted Forest & Maori Hill. Farm.”
46 km from car park.
15. 10/7/2019. Trampers. Maori Peak and Split Rock. Neil and Margreet

Fifteen keen trampers set out from Seacliff on a cool but calm mid-winter’s day. After a short climb on the the road, we made our entrance onto private farmland and stopped for morning tea track-side in a shady area of native bush.

G.2nd-- Great spot for morning tea.

Great spot for morning tea. (Gordon pic and caption.)

We climbed steadily on an old coach road/farm track to the top of the hill where we could take in the magnificent vista from Waikouaiti to Taiaroa Head. Seawards, the off-shore mist blanked out the horizon so that a mighty container ship at anchor truly looked as idle as a painted ship, upon a painted ocean.” (A description penned by poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge in ‘The Rime of the Ancient Mariner’!).

Thirty minutes later we sidled downhill

G.5th-- Up there like it or notc

Up there like it or not. (Gordon pic and caption.)

to reach Maori Peak, which is a bit of a challenge to ascend

M.3.Clambering up Maori Peakc

Clambering up Maori Peak. (Margreet pic and caption.)

– especially the rock face near the top. However who would want to miss the stunning views over the sea and surrounding countryside?

Being too early for lunch, we set out for Split Rock.

G.6th -- On the way to Split Rockc

On the way to Split Rock. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Today we chose to go via the bottom road to avoid boggy areas and a paddock full of ewes that the farmer requested we do not disturb. At a stock yard immediately below Split Rock we re-entered the Penno farm and encountered a nuggety little climb up a gully to the ridgeline. A handy log provided a convenient backrest for lunch overlooking Karitane township.

M.2. Lunch breakc

Lunch break. (Margreet pic and caption.)

Split Rock never fails to impress; especially since at least half of our team had not been there before. The bright red lichen and the narrow cleft through the rock

M.1. Going through the cleft in the Rockc

Going through the cleft in the Rock. (Margreet pic and caption.)

are spectacular. Most trampers also climbed onto the top of this huge rock to enjoy more great coastal views. It was then an easy descent back to the road to the cars. Since we had a bit of time we went for a wander through the Seacliff Reserve before finishing the day with a coffee/tea at Blue Skin Nurseries.

G.12th--Great end to a great trampc

Great end to a great tramp. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Distance around 12 km.

Neil and Margreet

 14. 28 February 2018 – Maori Peak and Split Rock Margreet and Neil.

After parking the cars in Russell Rd (at Seacliff) 12 trampers set out on the day’s hike. It was a calm, warm Dunedin morning and in fact during the course of the day the temperature got up to 24 degrees; so conditions were ideal.

We walked up the road, entered a farm, and enjoyed morning tea in a sheltered area past the wool shed.

Then we rambled through grassy paddocks until we reached Maori Peak at 11.30. It was a nuggety climb to the top but well worth it to get the spectacular coastal and mountain views.

Atop Maori Peak. (Phil pic and caption.)

Still too early for lunch so we descended and started making our way towards Split Rock.

We enjoyed a leisurely lunch at a sun-drenched ‘possie’ overlooking Karitane.

The hike through the paddocks to Split Rock was spoiled a little by waist high thistles

Sting’s next hit…Fields of Thistles. (Phil pic and caption.)

but we had forewarned our crew to wear appropriate protective clothing, so no real issue.

Split Rock was new to some and they were most impressed by the narrow cleft in the rock that we all had to squeeze through. The red colour of the rock lichen was beautiful

Split Rock. (Margreet pic and caption.)

and there were also lots of bush orchids to admire. The views from the top of the rock were not to be missed.

Atop Split rock towards the Harbour heads. (Phil pic and caption.)

Then it was an easy walk through paddocks and farm tracks back to the cars. Before going for coffee at Blueskin Bay we ventured into the Seacliff Recreational Reserve for a quick look at the memorial plaque that gives a brief history of the lunatic asylum that used to be there. The lawns are now beautifully manicured and it is a very peaceful place to reflect on the former infamous history of this place and its unfortunate inmates.

In all we hiked around 11 km and comments about the day were very positive.

Margreet & Neil

13. 21/10/2015. Trampers. Seacliff, Maori Peak, Split Rock.
On a very windy day, 12 trampers set out for the walk to Maori Peak, & Split Rock. After walking up the road, we had morning tea at the woolshed …
Morning tea break

Morning tea break

… before setting out for Maori peak, where some clambered up to the top for a look around. We then had a leisurely early lunch …
Lunch alongside Maori Peak (Ken pic and caption)

Lunch alongside Maori Peak (Ken pic and caption)

… before heading off to Split Rock.
There were a few in the group who had not been here before so they all had a good look around,
Exiting the split (Ken pic and caption)

Exiting the split (Ken pic and caption)

Getting back up to flat ground from the split (Ken pic and caption)

Getting back up to flat ground from the split (Ken pic and caption)

& some even climbed up onto the top for a great view.
Admiring the view from on top of Split rock

Admiring the view from on top of Split rock

On the way back, the majority of us decided we would follow the farm track back out to the road, while 3 others decided they knew best & went out the way that we had returned on a previous trip. Having now done the return both ways, I think i prefer the walk back through the paddocks, instead of the farm track, which is a bit boring, although it does offer some new views.

When everybody was ready to leave, we all decided that a stop at Blueskin Cafe was a good idea to keep up the coffee club tradition. On the way to the cafe, we caught up with the steam train that was visiting Dunedin for Labour weekend [powered by the steam engine ‘The Passchendaele”] which stopped at Waitati, where some of the group went to have a look at it.

Apart from the strong wind all day, everybody enjoyed the walk.

walked 9.1km
climbed 530mtrs. – Ken.

 12. 18/6/2014. Trampers. Seacliff, Maori Peak, Split Rock. Medium.
Mud, mud, glorious mud !!!!
From the above statement, you will have guessed that we had a very muddy tramp. We started early as one of our party had an appointment at 3:30pm, so we had to be sure of getting home in time for that.
When we arrived at Russell Rd. outside the Truby King Reserve, the condition of the road surface gave us a taste of what was to come, it was very wet & sloppy. As we walked up Russell Rd. the farmer came by on his tractor, so we had a good chat with him before moving on to the top of the road & into the farm land where we had morning tea at the woolshed not far from the road. We squelched our way over to Maori peak, where some climbed to the top to admire the view, & then it was off again retracing our steps back up to the top, & around to Split Rock, where it was obligatory for some to make their way through the split, & back again.




We had lunch at Split rock,



then it was off for more squelching back to the cars for an early trip home. It was a good walk, made harder by the amount of mud we were carrying on our boots, & by the very wet/soft ground.
We walked 9.4km; moving time 2h 17min; ave 4.1km/hr; climbed 342mtrs; max elevation 431mtrs. – Ken
11. 25/7/2012. 7 Trampers. Seacliff, Maori Peak, Split Rock. Medium. 

Average speed: 4.1km/hr
2h 39min actual moving time
311 max elevation of walk
GPS of route, courtesy Ken.

As you might determine from the GPS of the route,  we pioneered/recconnoitred some new ways of connecting Russell Road, Maori Peak and Split Rock, some better, some worse.
By going across at the immediate end of the road, we avoided having to climb the paper road over the top and the deep gully across to Maori Peak. Our gradients were more gradual. Bravo. However, on the return, at the large water tank, instead of going down, we went across and got into a no-trespassing area. (Compare route on map below on previous tramp for difference.) So, we climbed up and up and came out at the top of the road again! Ah well, it was still a good day out, and the extra exercise did nobody any harm. – Ian

Karitane from the top of Maori Peak. (Ken pic and caption)

NE from the top of Maori Peak (Ken pic and caption)

Ian and Jill at lunch below Maori Peak (Ken caption)

Ian about to go through Split Rock (Ken pic and caption)

Jill turns to go through Split Rock (Ken pic and caption)

Jill at the exit, before returning back through.

10. 10/3/2010. Trampers. Seacliff, Maori Peak, Split Rock. Medium. Leaders: Ken, Hazel, Ria.

Map of route. (Scanned by Bob from Google Earth)

We were late arriving at Russell Road, delayed by a Fulton Hogan “mill” relaying a long stretch of road near St Barnabas Church. We morning-tead up the road, crested the ridge and then down to avoid the heavy gorse infestation to skirt a large winter turnip paddock to make our way down, across and up to what Ian was sure was Maori Peak.

First peak. What Ian THOUGHT was Maori Peak. (Bob pic)

It wasn’t. So it was down again and on, down, and then up to the real peak.

Approach to Maori Peak. (Bob pic)

Several of us scrambled up its last steep ascent to lunch on the top and drink in the great views all around.

On top of Maori Peak. Ken, Ian, Ria, Hazel. Other peak behind to SW. (Bob pic)

Then it was back down again (carefully).

A careful descent. From top: Hazel, Sabina, Ian, Ria. (Bob pic)

The recce had been a failure due to opaque low fog so from here on it was a case of relying on memories as hazy as Ian’s. Despite some mutterings, George charted an original route to get us to the bush marking the track through it to Split Rock.

Taking in the view from the top of Split Roc. Bob, Sabina, Ken.

George at Split Rock entrance. (Bob pic)

Ken inside split rock. Fortunately no earthquake occurred at the time.

Ken near the split rock exit.

From here, we traced, in some places originally again, the general route back via a water tank and implement sheds to the side road above the old Asylum buildings to Russell Road and the cars. A good day for seven of us – and for three of whom, a visit to Maori Peak and Split Rock for the first time. We shall generously excuse faulty route memories of the old hands due to the six years’ time lapse since the last visit to Maori Peak. – Ian

The old Seacliff Asylum buildings.

9. 9/6/2004. Hikers. Seacliff, Maori Peak. Medium. Leaders: Peter and Wendy
Tea Break. Recognisable: Dot, Glenice, Arthur, Wendy, Margaret, Doug, Claude

Tea Break. Recognisable: Dot, Glenice, Arthur, Wendy, Margaret, Doug, Claude

Sheer climb. Lex, Ria, Glenice, Who? Arthur, Who? George

Sheer climb. Lex, Ria, Glenice, Who? Arthur, Who? George

Split Rock Exit. Bob (Hi, Shirl), George

Split Rock Exit. Bob (Hi, Shirl), George

8. 23/4/2003. Trampers. Seacliff: Maori Peak, Split Rock. Medium. Leaders: Doug M, Arthur H, Graham.
7. 12/12/2001. Alt. Enchanted Forest – Maori Peak, from Russell Road. Easy. Leaders: Catherine, Margaret D, Val.
6. 18/3/1998. Seacliff and Maori Peak. Leaders: Nancy, Lesley S, Bill H.
5. 4/12/1996. Karitane – Seacliff to Maori Peak. Park at Old Hospital. Leaders: Nancy, Joyce, Peg C.
4. 28/8/1996. Seacliff to Maori Peak. Combined. Park Seacliff Hospital entrance. Average. Leaders: Nancy, Joyce, Daphne.
3. 1/12/1993. Karitane, Maori Peak. Round trip. Medium. Leaders: Catherine, Ria L, Marie, Nel
2. 15/4/1992 Seacliff to Maori Peak. Round trip. Average. Leaders: Daphne, Nancy, Peg A, Stan R
1. 14/4/1989 Leaders: Catherine T, Nancy, Lesley S

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Jul 03 2019

Midwinter Street Walk. Street art.

Published by under Midwinter Dinners,Uncategorized

3. 3/7/2019. All. Midwinter Street Art walk and lunch. Leaders: Clive and Heather.

C.2) Some were smallc

Some were small. (Clive pic and caption.)

C.3) There was a lot to see at 76 Vogel Streetc

There was a lot to see at 76 Vogel Street. (Clive pic and caption.)


(Helen pic.)


(Helen pic.)


(Helen pic.)


(Helen pic.)


(Helen pic.)


(Helen pic.)

C.4) Lunch at The Wharf Hotelc

Lunch at The Wharf Hotel. (Clive pic and caption.)

2. 6/7/2016. All. Street Art Walk. Mid-Winter Lunch. E. Leaders: Bev, Judy and Alex.
31 members gathered at the Wharf Hotel car park and set out for a fascinating walk around Dunedin streets, viewing some of the amazing street art adorning our buildings’ walls.
First stop was just along the foreshore where mulled wine was served, (courtesy of Elaine and Judy), really hitting the spot on a coldish morning.  Then it was up and across the over-bridge to Jetty Street, to Princes St and Manse St.  The back entrance to the Scenic Hotel provided a look at the spectacular Cloud Catcher mural.

Cloud Catcher

Cloud Catcher. Oops Just cut “the catch” off. Dash!

We did wonder just how the artist managed to hang up there to do this amazing work.
A short puff up Rattray St, to Dowling St and then up to Tennyson St,


Got “the catch”! but too far away really. City view from bottom of Tennyson Street.

down View St (glad it wasn’t up), across Moray Place, through the car park and along the alleyway to the Octagon.  This alleyway is full of excellent art work, well worth browsing through.  From here it was around the Octagon, down Stuart St, and along to Queens Gardens, before crossing  to Vogel St again, and over the bridge back to the Wharf just after midday.  Thank you Bev for organising this and turning out in spite of a miserable head cold.
Here we found the rest of the crew gathered, raising the number to 62, a great turn out.  It was pleasing to see so many ‘senior’ members in attendance.
After birthday greetings to Margaret and Adrienne, Judy ran a short quiz, testing observational skills from the walk.  Thanks to Eric for his help, and for the chocolates donated.  Judy then read her ‘Ode to the Club’.  (Attached [at the bottom of the Club’s History page] if you want to read it for yourselves!).
Congratulations and thanks to the hotel staff, who took orders and prepared and delivered meals so efficiently and promptly.  This was much appreciated – the blue cod was great!  While some indulged in dessert, the ‘Four Jolly Tramping Mates’ presented two songs, ably led by Bruce.
Thanks boys, you did well!

The boys. (Adrienne pic.)

The Mates/boys. (Adrienne pic.)

All in all this was a really successful day, with everyone relaxed and happy, enjoying the food, the company and  the entertainment. – Judy and Bev.

1. 15/7/2015. Hikers. Street Art Street Walk. E. Leaders: Lance and Lois.

iPhoto GPS of route

iPhoto GPS of route

It was another of the Lance and Lois’ well-planned, well-commentated walks. We surprised them with our large group, numbering 31, crowding up at street corners and filling pedestrian crossings, but they coped. Beginning at Unity Park lookout, we first walked down Eglington Road to the former Montecillo property being developed for new housing. Lance told us the driveway in was a solid  8 inches thick concrete slab!) We then returned out to walk down through the Town Belt by way of of the ‘Steep Street’ track, stopping on a grassy slope…


Morning Tea stop

Morning Tea stop

…for morning tea just above the zig-zag steps.

The steps are of those awkward sloping kind, enforcing either a stretched stride or two tiny ones per step. Anyway we arrived a bit up Maitland Street above Carroll St, to enter an unobtrusive lane that led into a large centre-of-the-block grassy area that led us diagonally through to Stafford St. Having enjoyed this delightful mid-block section,  we turned down Melville St to Carroll St to view the former St Andrews Church. Lance had already prepared us at our morning tea for this visit. He had told us of Rutherford Waddell’s greatest sermon of all time at this church  on the ‘sin of cheapness’, where the Minister had declaimed against the sweated labour of the Dunedin seamstresses of the time, a clarion call that was to bring about far-reaching legislation reform of working conditions. So we viewed the historic church which has in more recent times been used by the Word of Life Pentecostals, and since 2001 by the Coptic Orthodox Church. We rounded the large old Bell Tea Co building corner into Hope St and up again to Stafford St to walk down it to our first street art, the Haast Eagle.

Haast Eagle

Chinese artist DALEast represents New Zealand’s extinct Haast Eagle and is reflective of his unique style which presents the frenetic shape of animals and people as if they have been constructed out of shards of metal. On Stafford St

We continued down and across to the corner of Princes and Jetty streets to view the “Riding Dreams” mural.

Boy on horse

“Riding Dreams” by Pixel Pancho demonstrates a complex interweaving of the human form, flora, and metal to create the surreal image of a ‘not quite human’ boy riding a fantastical metal horse reflecting his fascination with 1950s robots.

Around the corner, “Love is in the air” on Bond St was delightful.

Love is in the air

Polish artist Natalia Rak’s mural entitled “Love is in the air” is characteristic of her cheeky, playful and hyper-realistic  style and reflects her passion for bold colours.

I could go on. We went hither and thither, as you can perceive from he route map, far too much to list here. This reporter can recommend such a stop-go walk, studying buildings, renovated and old, treading pavements some, no doubt we had never planted foot on before.

Just two more ‘works of art’ now, and lunch at First Church before heading back up the hill.

First the waka and steam-punk submarines exiting a fish’s mouth. (Quietly: But aren’t the sails billowing backwards?)

waka and fish

Maori waka and a steam-punk like submarine emerge from a fish’s mouth in this piece by Phlegm. On Vogel St.

Our lunch at First Church.


Panorama of lunch on seats in First Church grounds.

And finally, an art work in Rattray St.

"Chasing the Thin White Cloud"

“Chasing the Thin White Cloud” , three stories high is the largest work to date of Fintan Magee.

Then up Maclaggan St and High Street and back to the cars.

Thanks to Lance and Lois for a carefully thought out day.- Ian

(Grateful acknowledgement to Dunedin Street Art Trail information.)


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Jun 26 2019

Skyline from Bull Ring

Published by under Both Hikers & Trampers

Location: 15 km from car park.
Flagstaff name

5. 26/6/2019. Trampers. Bullring to Swampy Summit. Jill R.

A perfect calm winter morning and 13 trampers greatly enjoyed walking the well maintained tracks from the Bullring to Swampy Summit.  Views over the city and hinterland are unparalleled in this area.

G.2nd-- A view of Mosgielc

A view of Mosgiel. (Gordon pic and caption.)

G.3rd-- morn.tea out of the cold breezec

Morn.tea out of the cold breeze. (Gordon pic and caption.)

G.7th-- Tussock not as big as thoughtc

Tussock not as big as thought. (Gordon pic and caption.)

G.4th -- One of the last steep pinches before the summitc

Neil M led us on a slight detour to the Aviation Navigation Station – over a Track he had helped to clear!

H.Group of 13 at the topc

Group of 13 at the top. (Helen pic and caption.)

G.8th-- Who pulled out the signc

Who pulled out the sign? (Gordon pic and caption.)

We returned to the Bullring via the Firebreak Track, which was quite sticky as the morning’s frozen ground thawed. A lovely 16 km outing! – Jill R.

4. 27/6/2018. Trampers. Skyline from Bull Ring. Leader: Helen.

A group of 10 keen trampers left the carpark driving to the Bull Ring.

Moving out. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Walking up to the Flagstaff lookout on what was an early bullock and stock route.As was the case prior year 1850, mist covered the lookout making it easy to get lost. Donations then, were called for and allowing flagstaffs to be erected hence the current name.

Such was the case in chilly conditions today. The normally spectacular views were poor. Morning tea was under the north side of the lookout.

Out of the wind for smoko. (Gordon pic and caption.)

We continued past  the Pineapple Flagstaff  intersection and in muddy conditions towards Swampy Summit, passing 4 runners and a mountain biker. Lunch was just after noon and behind the Aircraft Navigation Building.

Lunch at Swampy Summit. (Gordon pic and caption.)

As conditions were cool we had a shortish lunch and returned the same way. We spoke with a man and 2 dogs on the lookout for a wallaby seen in the area yesterday.

The cloud had lifted enough to get most of the 360 degree views passing the lookout.

Barr Stadium. (Gordon pic and caption.)

It was a cool but enjoyable tramp covering 13 to 14 kms overall.

Afternoon tea was taken at Blackstone Cafe. Phil M

3. 29/3/2017. Trampers. M. Leaders: Jill and Jan R.

We had brilliant sunshine and little breeze all day. From the Bull Ring, we went up the “Pineapple Track” to have our morning tea on “Flagstaff” summit. Superb views from here …

Morning Tea with view. (Arthur pic and caption.)

… but  by far the most interesting was the massive bank of sea fog which extended as far as the eye could see – north and south along the coast, and out to sea. The fog was moving up the Otago Harbour, almost to the city and entirely covering the Peninsula. The bank of fog was of interest all day to us, as it ebbed and flowed.

Fog on Peninsula. (Arthur pic and caption.)

Continuing along the “Pineapple Track” for a while it was rather concerning to see gorse and broom encroaching somewhat  over the track for some distance.

Turning off to the left we reached the “Swampy Ridge Track”, to follow it out and back for the rest of the day.

We met a lady with 2 dogs who had just come up “McQuilkans Track”, and it was gratifying to hear of our club members’ track clearing efforts being appreciated. We don’t know how many people use the tracks we clear, though.

After a time, and a couple of good uphill pulls we cam to the top end of “Porkies Track”. It was here that our newest member elected to stop, to be collected on our return journey.

The rest of the group continued on to Swampy Summit, to have our lunch on the roadside …

Lunch. (Arthur pic and caption.)

… beside the Aviation VOR beacon (a.k.a. “The Flying Saucer”.)

Judy’s dance troup. (Arthur pic and caption.)

We had superb views inland in the clear air into the Silver Peaks, Rock and Pillar, Lammermoors and Wind Farm, Maungatua and the Taieri Plain. A piece of wedding cake to have with our lunch was a special treat.

Lunch over, the homeward trip began – retracing our steps, and collecting new member at “Porkies” (he must have had a good nap in the sun).

The breeze died away, and the heat rose as the sun beat down on us. Some rest stops were needed, but eventually we were back at the “Bull Ring” with empty (or near empty) water bottles.

On returning to Mosgiel we visited the Blackstone for a little while. 9 Trampers were out today to enjoy or 15 km walk. – Art.

2. 2/3/2016. Both. Bull Ring to Leith Saddle via Transmitter Tower. Leaders: Jill, Janice.
GPS of route

GPS of route. Ignore straight line. Forgot to turn off in time. Distance measured by others up to 9.5km.

21 of us set off from the bullring across the Pineapple Track, up to Swampy Summit, then down the Leith Saddle track. The day was perfect, sunny but not too hot, with no wind to speak of. The views were superb, …


Pearl of the Plain.

… firstly overlooking Dunedin, …


Dunedin’s beautiful setting.

Morning Tea. Guess where?

Morning Tea. Guess where!

… then from Swampy down the Leith Saddle Track great views to the north west of the Silverpeaks and Blueskin Bay areas.

Blueskin Bay from Swampy (Helen Pic.)

Blueskin Bay from Swampy (Helen Pic.)

The track up to Swampy was a bit steep in places, and some of us found it a bit of a struggle, but there was a sense of accomplishment when we reached the top. Had lunch at the summit by the transmitter tower, then made our way down to the Northern Motorway where we were picked up by a couple of shuttle buses and taken back to the cars. Part of the descent track from Swampy is quite scoured out and care was needed getting down the wooden steps, but generally the tracks are in very good condition We allowed 5 hours for this traverse, and everyone comfortably completed it well within this time. – Janice.

1. 14/9/2005. Skyline from Bull Ring. Leaders: Molly, Lesley S

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