Archive for the 'Trampers' Category

Oct 17 2018

Craiglowan Falls

Published by under Trampers,Year round

9. 17/10/2018. Trampers. Steve Amies – Craig Lowan Falls. M. Dave.

13 keen trampers left their cars not far from the Whare flat school house and started on the Tunnel track.

Starting out on Tunnel track. (Gordon pic and caption.)

This track was fairly flat and one couldn’t help but marvel at the amount of work done by the early water race workers. After reaching McRaes Weir we turned up a somewhat steep track

Heading up to Steve Amies track. (Gordon pic and caption.)

to reach the Steve Amies ridge.  The climb along the ridge was very pleasant, with manukas/kanukas dominant, with lush green undergrowth.
We stopped at the memorial Bryan Freeman seat – he used to be a good friend of Eleanor and her late husband.

The Bryan Freeman memorial seat- a good place for a break. (Dave pic and caption.)

Near the top of the track it was obvious the amount of tree planting and track maintenance that Steve Amies and his mates did many years ago.
We then walked down Rollinsons Road and entered the bush that leads to the Whare lake loop track.  It was in this area that a vote of thanks was passed to Arthur and Neil for the obvious work on track maintenance that they continually do (you no longer get your boots wet)!!!

Neil & Arthur’s Bridge. (Gordon pic and caption.)

After having lunch on Smithys’ track it was then down through the bush and back onto Rollinsons road. Round the corner and off the flagstaff – whare flat road we followed an un-named track through scrub up to a pine plantation on a ridge.  On the sides of the ridge were sycamore trees – a pest – but a pretty sight as the trees were coming into leaf. This improved track lead along the ridge finally ending high above McQuilkan’s creek.  Everyone talk care descending steeply down to the creek.
5 minutes up the creek we were at the Craig – Lowen falls – quite a sight!

Craig Lowen Falls. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Another half an hour down the streamwe were out in the open and back to the cars.

We covered 21,319 steps, 15.9km in 5.5hrs and gained a net height of 349 metres.
A good round trip!  Dave

8. 24/9/2014. Trampers. Craiglowan Falls. M.
Enter via MacQuilkin Road up from Whare Flat Schoolhouse.
Craiglowan route

GPS of route, courtesy Ken. Craiglowan-Bullring-Aquaduct. We walked 15km; ave 4.3km/h; moving time 3 h 30m; climbed 531m.

This week’s tramp was to Craiglowan Falls. We started off at the locked gate on McQuilkans Rd & followed the marked track across numerous creek crossings [where one member got her feet wet at the first crossing] & up over the large rocks just before reaching the falls. We had morning tea break in the bush above the falls, & then retraced our steps for a short distance back to where a side track led off up the LH side of the stream. (Ed note: This was our original, and only, route down to the falls.) We were not sure where this went, but decided to investigate it anyway, as it looked like it had just had some work done on it. I climbed steeply up until we came to some pine forest, & at this stage I was quite sure that it would come out on the Whare Flat-Flagstaff Rd via Sanitarium Rd, which proved to be correct.
At this time it was only about 11:30, so we decided to walk up to the Bull Ring, & go down Longridge Rd to join up with Smeatons Rd,[where stopped for lunch] …
Lunch on Smeatons Rd - Ken pic and caption.

Lunch on Smeatons Rd – Ken pic and caption.

… – McIntyres Rd, [so we could view the remains of Smeatons shack] then down to the Aquaduct. This proved to be more difficult then would seem, as there were a lot of big trees down over the track in places, which made it necessary to detour around them. From the Aquaduct, we walked around to join up with McIntyres Rd. again, & then crossing straight over here onto the next part of the track leading to Longridge Rd. then back to the car.
Some of the tracks were quite muddy & slippery, but all made it safely back, & enjoyed the day. it was new territory for some in the group, & for others it had been a long time since they were there.
7. 30/5/2012. Trampers. Falls, Goat Point, Smeatons Shack, Aqueduct, Longridge Road.
We reached the Falls OK, but stream crossing on wet rocks and climbing over mossy rocks proved rather dicey. (Note: This tramp best done in summer.)

Craiglowan Falls. (Ken pic and caption)

Morning Tea at Craiglowan Falls (Ken pic and caption)

A cautious descent on way back down over large mossy rocks.

Well, to this point, so far, so good. Back at the stream crossing down below the confluence, we failed  to locate the track up to Goat Point, despite knowing its general area. So we climbed in faith and hope. Finally we came across track markers, leading left and right. After exploring left, we went right, until they led relentlessly down. So we retraced back up because Ian had it fixed in his mind that we had to go up to reach the pine plantation. Mistake one.

Encouragingly however, Ken found a track indication on his GPS, and it did promise to reach a forest road. So we kept to this, despite no track appearing, only plenty of scratchy blackberry brambles. But we did reach the road, finally.

This we walked down until we reached a junction, with signs indicating that we were on Smeatons Road, crossed by McIntyre road. Hooray. McIntyre was what we had originally wanted. Ian felt we still had to go down so we turned left and down McIntyre road. Mistake two. We should have taken McIntyre road to the right. More of that later.

Anyway we made the long walk down McIntyre Road, left, to where the race crosses it, and turned right, along the race to lunch, as planned, at the Aqueduct.

Linzi at lunch.

Now, have a look at Ken’s GPS of our route. Click to enlarge. Start at the top, and follow to the right to reach Craiglowan Falls at the extreme right.

GPS of route, courtesy Ken.

Start returning to the left a bit. The zigzag you see is where we starting climbing away from the stream. A further zigzag a little further along is where we started following the track markers. The little tail to the left there, is where we turned back, before going back up again. CRITICAL MISTAKE. Notice, however,  the short gap beyond to a tail coming up from below. This is the gap we should have traversed.

Now turn to page 8.07 of Antony Hamel’s Tracks and Trails, and find on the map of Flagstaff Forest at the top right, the circled number “seven”. See how it ascends first before turning right along a contour, below Goat Point and then DOWN to meet McIntyre road at its other end next to Smeatons Shack.

That tail from below is where Ken and Ian climbed up at lunch time to check where we should have come down. And lo and behold, we found not only Smeatons Shack but also the marked track next to it where we should have exited from. An aha moment. And it all became clear, as the GPS map confirms.
Ken and I returned back down the end of McIntyre Road to find the others had left, leaving Doug waiting for us. Of course we should have consulted with everyone to get mutual agreement with what we proposed to do and to arrange a meeting place should the others proposed not to wait. But in our excitement at solving the mystery, we had neglected to do so.
Anyway, going on out to the bottom of McIntyre Road at its other end, we didn’t know whether the others had simply turned down there and back along Long Ridge Road to the cars, or carried on along the race. In the absence of any indication, we set off along the race, as that had been the original intention of the tramp. We were relieved to catch up on them enough to see them further beyond us, but stopping to don parkas as the drizzling rain got heavier, lost sight of them again.
Emerging from the race end further up Long Ridge Road, we saw them again rounding a corner further down and caught up on them at the gate at the end. So all was well that ended well.
Quite an adventure and some interesting unplanned bush-bashing. A lesson in how bush conditions can change over two years and a reminder that our smaller numbers means that all our tramps now amount to a recce, – unlike the hikers, whose “reconnoiterers”  go through our experience and sort things out first. – Ian
6. 10/2/2010. Trampers. Falls, Goat Point, Smeaton Shack, Aquaduct, Longridge Road. Leaders: Ian, Sabina.
Down Whare Flat Road 1.5 km. Sanatorium Road second on left after Bullring. – Track no longer locatable from top by us.
It all got a bit complicated. First the leaders failed to find the track down from the Sanatorium Road extension track. Many, many fallen trees had obliterated all trace of the track where it first descends steeply down. Well, the leaders couldn’t find it anyway.
However the start of a new track closer in from the gate had been pointed out by a local landowner so that was followed on the day.
It was fairly well cleared but markers petered out down the middle of a steep bouldery stream (the McQuilkin way upstream from the falls?) so after a morning tea rest, we prudently retreated back up and began all over again, this time back at the old school-house. Up McQuilkin Road. Right-fork into bush and across the McQuilkin on a wire hand-hold. On up and eventually back across to the true right and to the stream junction. Interesting notice points to “Watar fall”. Up over the large rocks and now it was lunch-time at the falls.

Ken, Doug and George before Craiglowan Falls

Lunch at Craiglowan Falls. George, Ria, Hazel (hidden), Sabina, Ian, Doug. (Ken pic)

Back down and across to the true left but now up steeply to Goats Point. Across through the bush and down to Smeatons Shack on McIntyre Road.

Smeatons Shack. Ian, George. (Ken pic)

Down the road , down the track to emerge on the cleanly excavated concrete access race near the aqueduct. (Thanks, track clearers.)

Artistic shot through race gate. Doug, Ria, Ian. (Ken pic)

Rusted up flow meter. Ian. (Ken pic)

Aqueduct top. (Ken pic)

Aqueduct. Collapse section showing. Stone pillar. Ian, Doug, Ria, George. (Ken pic)

Then following out along the race to the other end of McIntyre Road, and across it to the far end of the race where the track comes out on Longridge Road. Down the road and back to the cars. What could have been a very short day comfortably filled out to be more satisfyingly longer. Must ask those landowners how that other track gets you to the falls. And must check out whether the old track is still navigable. – Ian
5. 3/8/2005. Both. School House, Craiglowan Falls, – Whare Flat. Leaders: Judy, Jacqui, Hazel
4. 6/8/2003. Both. Craiglowan Falls. Medium. Leaders: Doug M, Hazel, Barbara L, Mary M.
3. 19/7/2003. Craiglowan Falls.
Craiglowan Falls

Craiglowan Falls

Craiglowan Falls. Ian

Craiglowan Falls. Ian

Upstream from top of Craiglowan Falls.

Upstream from top of Craiglowan Falls.

Overlooking top of Craiglowan Falls.

Overlooking top of Craiglowan Falls.

Old Aquaduct. Doug.

Old Aqueduct. Doug.

Top of old aquaduct.

Top of old aqueduct.

2. 30/8/2000 Craiglowan Falls, Whare Flat. Leaders: Mavis, Winifred, Val
1. 16/4/1997. Craig Lowan Falls from Bull Ring. Leaders:Hugh, Val, Judy C

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Oct 10 2018

Greengage Track

Published by under Trampers

3. 10/10/2018. Trampers. Greengage Circuit. Leaders: Arthur and Gordon.

Daylight arrived with a warm norwest breeze and a bright sky – but the forecast was not good.

Nine energetic trampers ceparted the car park at 8.30 a.m. for an early start. Passing through the locked gate on Rollinsons Road, we parked at the ‘elbow’ and began our tramp from there.

Going down the Rainguage Track for half an hour took us to the start of the Greengage Track, which we followed. Getting ever steeper took us to the stream …

Hiking down into Silverstream. (Gordon pic and caption.)

… at the bottom, which we crossed – this being part of the Silverstream.

Now for the best part of the day. We had a 30 metre rope

Waiting to climb out of S:stream. (Gordon pic and caption.)

to assist our climb out of the stream bed. The reward at the top was the smoko stop.

Waiting their turn on the rope. (Gordon pic and caption.)

From here it was the long climb up onto, …

Nearly there. (Gordon pic and caption.)

… and to the top of Green Ridge. It was rather tough going at first but the grade eased as we progress upward.

Heading up to Silver Peaks Track. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Around 11.30 a.m. low cloud descended, with dampness in the air. Near the top of Green Ridge, a lunch halt was called in a cosy sheltered place.

A much needed lunch break. (Gordon pic and caption.)

After the welcome food and rest, it was only a few more minutes to the main Sliver Peaks Track. After the track we had been on, it was like a highway!

Turning right, (we turned right at every junction we came to today, except the first and the last ones), we followed it to “Sleepy Hollow“. After a brief rest stop, we were now on the Swampy Ridge Track, which had about 1 km of very muddy track to contend with.

By the time we reached Rollinsons Track, the rain was falling.

A little over half an hour would have us back at the cars, bu we were exposed, and out in the open now. It got colder too, and flurries of snowflakes were observed.

All arrived back at the cars in good condition and in a happy frame of mind. Warm but damp to some degree thoughts turned to home and hot showers, etc.

We had tramped about 15 km, in mostly good conditions, and with a very worthwhile tramp to our credit. Thanks to all. – Art.

2. 20/1/2016. Trampers. Greengage Track, anti-clockwise.
Ten hardy souls set off from sunny Mosgiel for a hard tramp. Travelled up past the scout camp and up to Rollinsons road where we parked our cars.
Within the first 10 mins on the Rollinsons track, some of us had wet feet. One can see why they call this area swampy. Lovely views as we went along our way.

Lovely views. (Helen pic)

Lovely views. (Helen pic)

Alas the fog came in and we could not see much. It was nice and warm though. Walked over swampy summit tramp.

Swampy Track. (Helen pic)

Swampy Track. (Helen pic)

Across to Green Hut? (Helen pic)

Across to Green Hut? (Helen pic)

Morning tea stop was about 5 mins from the Green hut.

Morning Tea Stop (Helen pic)

Morning Tea Stop (Helen pic)

Went onto the Green Hut track then Greengage track.  This track not used a lot.

Track not used a lot. (Helen pic)

Track not used a lot. (Helen pic)

Lunch on this track. Carried along then onto Raingage track and back up to the cars. Lots of quite hard walking up and down slippery hills. A few of us did some bum sliding in patches. Abseiling down about 20 meters and crossing a creek were part of our day. A few stiff bodies as we finished the walk.  Lovely to have our search and rescue team Dermot and Fin the dog with us.

Fin, the dog. (Helen pic)

Fin, the dog. (Helen pic)

A hard tramp but was very enjoyable. – Helen

1. 27/8/2014. Greengage Track.

Greengage Tramp. GPS of route, courtesy Ken.

Greengage Tramp. GPS of route, courtesy Ken. We walked 12.5 km; moving time 3 hrs 45 mins; Ave 3.3 km/hr; Climbed 780 mtrs. [That’s getting close to 1 km straight up !!]

On what turned out to be a very nice day for tramping, 4 of us set out to do a tramp on a newly opened track, namely Greengage track. This runs from Rain Gauge Spur track, over to Green Ridge track.
Having cajoled a key from the DCC for the locked gate on Rollinsons Rd. we parked up at the elbow, & made our way over to Raingauge Spur track. Then it was quite a lengthy walk down here, for about 3/4 hr [ including a morning tea stop] from the car before we got to the turn off onto Greengage track. As nobody had done this tramp before, we were all looking forward to it, but didn’t realise just how hard it would be. The track is quite steep, & drops all the way down into the valley, where you cross a stream [ part of the Silverstream headwaters] & clamber out the other side with the help of a rope, which has been thoughtfully put there. From here it is a steep climb nearly all the way up to Green Ridge track, where we arrived about 12:30, & then we walked along the short distance to the Green Hut site, where we had lunch, & a well deserved break.

Lunch stop at Green Hut site. (Ken pic and caption)

Lunch stop at Green Hut site. (Ken pic and caption)

The return journey was supposed to retrace our steps, but I couldn’t face the prospect of climbing all the way back down into the valley, & then climbing all the way back up to the car, I put it to the others that we could take an easier way out via Green Ridge track, & then onto the Swampy Ridge track, then along Rollinsons Track back to the car, this was accepted without protest.
So after lunch we set off again, & turning onto the Swampy Ridge track, we soon discovered why it is called “Swampy” , as there were lots & lots of very wet muddy stretches, which were ankle deep in places. We eventually found the entrance to Rollinsons Track, & made our way cautiously along the first part of this, as markers were conspicuous by their absence. The last half was well marked, & the climb out to the car, up the very wet track [running water] was useful for cleaning our boots !!
This tramp is not recommended for unfit persons !! I was suitably shattered when we arrived back at the car. – Ken.

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Oct 10 2018

Sullivans Dam, Cloud Forests, Escarpment, Cowan round trip

Published by under Trampers,Year round

click to enlarge
Cloud Forest and Escarpment

Map: Sullivans Dam, Cloud Forest, Telegraph (Old Bridal) track to Pigeon Flat, Escarpment Track, Cowan Rd, Short Cut to Fox Rd, down to Sullivans Dam

8. 10/10/2018. Sullivans Dam. Cloud Forest, Transmission Line. Return. M. Leaders: Pam and Dawn.

Morning tea at Sullivan’s Dam. (Clive pic and caption.)

Up through the trees. (1) (Clive pic and caption.)

Up through the trees. (2) (Clive pic and caption.)

At the top before the rain set in. (Clive pic and caption.)

Lunch sheltering from the rain. (Clive pic and caption.)

7. 20/7/2016. Hikers. Sullivans Dam. Cloud Forest, Transmission Line, Round trip to Lookout and Leith Saddle. Return. M. Leaders: Pam, Ian.
22 Hikers turned up. 14 went to Transmission line, 11 did ‘Leith loop’ (a first for us). – Ian.
View of some of the stepping stone steps.

Some of the multiple ‘stepping stone’ steps – on one of the easier gradients. [Ed: Have seen such nowhere else.]

Lunch at Transmission line.

Lunch at Transmission line at top of Cloud Forest track.

Bluesman Bay view from Transmission Line lunch spot. (Adrienne pic.)

Blueskin Bay view from Transmission Line lunch spot. (Adrienne pic.)

Dunedin view from lookout point. (Adrienne pic.)

Dunedin view from lookout point. (Adrienne pic.)

Dam view from where? - Lookout? (Adrienne pic.)

Sullivan’s Dam view from  Lookout point. (Adrienne pic.)

Ends of track down from Lookout, on Leith Saddle end of Pigeon Flat Road. (Adrienne pic.)

Ends of track down from the Lookout Loop, on Leith Saddle end of Pigeon Flat Road. (Adrienne pic.)

6. 9/3/2011. Trampers. Sullivans Dam, Cloud Forests, Escarpment, Cowan round trip.

Pines up ahead, through which and around we have to go.

At the foot of a rocky bluff we had to climb around.

On the top of the bluff. (Apologies for badly aimed shot.)

It was an great tramp. Some challenges, like having to crawl on knees over the huge rocks, crawling under some gigantic fallen trees, going through bush so dense that we couldn’t see the ground, pushing our way through gorse and holding on to trees to swing through a few muddy patches. A couple of times there was some discussion on which way to go, but with our two awesome experienced leaders, Ian and Doug, we were soon headed in the correct direction.
A small problem for the ladies was some cattle in a paddock we had to go through, first Dawn was too nervous to move when the beasts started coming towards her, but Ian assured her they were only curious.   After waiting for Pam and Jill to appear, Ian decided to investigate, so he climbed back through the fence and went back up the paddock to find two more ladies nervous of the cattle.  He confidently escorted them down the rest of the way.
The tramp took 6 hours but didn’t seem that long with great company and the best escorts, it was a wonderful experience and I look forward to many more. – Dawn.

It was disappointing to find much of the Escarpment Track so overgrown. It had evidently not been tramped very often lately.

But thanks to those who have looked after the short-cut from Cowan Road through the trees down to Fox Road, and further on, to those who had trimmed back the gorse from the track down through the regenerating forestry. – Ian.

(5.) 12/8/2009 Sullivans Dam, Cloud Forests, Escarpment, Cowan round trip. CANCELLED. BAD WEATHER. Leaders: Bill, Doug.

The following photos taken on RECCE!:

Sullivans Dam

Sullivans Dam. (Bill pic)

Blueskin Bay from Telegraph Track

Blueskin Bay from Telegraph Track. (Bill pic)

Track notice

Track notice. (Bill pic)

Boulders

Boulders recently climbed. (Bill pic). Doug.

Vert. Escarpment

Mud on Escarpment. (Bill pic). Doug.

4. 22/7/2009 Sullivans Dam, Cloud Forests of Leith, Lookout, Leith Saddle, Pipe Line back to Dam. Leaders: L Gowans, B Harvey.
3. 18/7/2007 Leaders: Abe, Ian

From Sullivans Dam, we made our way through

Tea Break. Ian, George, Tash, Helen.

Cloud Forest, crossed Pole track, crossed Telegraph/Bridal Track, North face of Mt Cargill, down Cowan Road, Short-cut to cross Bridal Track,

Down Cowan Road. Keith, George, Arthur H, Glenice, Diane (obscured), Helen, Tash, Ian.

through cleared forestry,

Down through cleared forestry. Ian, Helen, Diane, Arthur, Keith, Tash

McCutcheon paddocks, up pipe line back to dam.

2. 30/11/2005. Trampers. Sullivans Dam, Cloud Forest, Escarpment, Cowan Road. Round trip Leaders: Bill & Pat, Bruce
1. 20/7/2005. Sullivans Dam, Cloud Forest, Escarpment, Cowan Road. Round trip. Leaders: Bill & Pat, Bruce.

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Sep 12 2018

Government Track and beyond

Published by under Trampers

32 km from carpark.
2.5+ hours from road to pole-line and Styx Road.
No. 22 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “Government Track Waipori Rd. Year Round.”
Link:  DCC: Mountain biking on Government Track
Link: DCC: Government Track map.
[DCC brochure extract: Government Track. 4 hr 30 min, 17 km (return).
The track entrance is 5 km down Waipori Falls Rd on the right; parking is 100 m further on the left. Traversing the slopes of the beech-and mānuka-forested Waipori Valley south of Dunedin, the Government Track was built in the 1860s to provide access to the central goldfields. For mountain bikers there is an option of riding up and returning the same way. Alternatively, once at the top follow the pylon track left and steeply down into Waipori township, then follow the road back to the start.]

28. 12/9/2018. Hikers. Government Track. Leaders: Clive and Lester.

25 Hiker set out from beside the Waipori River.

Hiker set out. (Clive pic and caption.)

At first the track was slippery and boggy. Then as we got up into the bush a walk up a steady incline was enjoyed by all.

Morning tea on the track. (Clive pic and caption.)

Until….  we hit the next patch of boggy ground and we had to negotiate more slippery track, made a bit worse by the cattle that had churned up the path. The weather was kind and we made it to the 5km mark before deciding that was far enough and returned to the open paddock for lunch.

Lunch in the sunshine. (Clive pic and caption.)

We then made our way back the way we had come trying to find the less slippery and boggy part of the path. The views from up the top were great.

The view up the Waipori River Valley. (Clive pic and caption.)

We all made it safely to the cars and then onto Topiary for afternoon tea.  – Clive & Lester

27. 25/7/2018. Trampers. Government Track. Leader: Sue.

Still quite cool. (Gordon pic and caption.)

A rocky slip. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Another obstacle. (Gordon pic and caption.)

A well deserved late lunch break. (Gordon pic and caption.)

26. 30/8/2017. Trampers. Government Track. M. Leader: Dave.

14 keen  trampers met at the carpark near the start of the Government track on Waipori Road.  We soon started on the track noting the 4 twisted manuka trunks at the side of the track.  The track has a gentle grade and is 8.5km long.

The reason for the gentle grade and generous width of this track lies in its origin as the original “road” from Berwick through to the Waipori gold fields. Over 20 men were employed during the 1860’s to form this publicly-funded work, which was never much more than a bridle track unsuitable for wheeled traffic. When completed, it provided a cheaper alternative route to bring in supplies (horse drawn) from Dunedin, which previously had to be carted round via Lawrence.

Morning tea was had over the style, up the ridge, in the sun and on time at 10am!

(Margreet pic.)

We continued up the track which is through native bush, mainly manuka, kanuka and silver beech

(Margreet pic.)

. There were occasional views out to the Waipori valley and surrounding hills. A number of big tree trunks lying over the track were either scrambled under or over. There was plenty of talking and hilarity on this trip which was great!

Lunch break was at the top of the track, again in the sun.

(Margreet pic.)

We then continued along the forestry road and stopped at the highest point (580 metres) where there were great views all around,

(Phil pic.)

particularly Maungatuas, Lammerlaws and Rock and Pillar range.  Moving on to the top of the kowhai spur we stopped to get panoramic views of the Taieri plain, very clear because of the fine day. The kowhai spur is aptly named as it is steep and feet can move to the front of your boots! The next break was at a farmer’s workers hut

(Margreet pic.)

before heading down the ridge, through some bush and back on to the bottom of the Government track.  A number of birds were heard and sighted including kereru (wood pigeon) and bellbirds. On getting back to the cars we found we had covered 18.5km. A fair walk!

It was then off to the wobbly goat (with some wobbly legs) in Outram for a well, deserved coffee and more chit chat.

A great group to be with – Dave M.

25. 23/11/2016. Hikers. Government Track. E. Leaders: Jim and Betty.

Route map courtesy Ian. (N.B.) Used shortcut route on return. Regular route a bit longer.)

Route map, Government Track, courtesy Ian. (N.B. Used old shortcut route on return. Regular route a bit longer.)

The party consisted of 23 people.

The weather’s appearance was indifferent.  But the Government track up the Waipori Gorge afforded good shelter in the bush.  The condition of the track was excellent [thanks to track-clearing by the leaders on their recce, especially on the zig-zag beginning – ed.] and this track has a very moderate consistent gradient.  The return was a slight downhill grade & a total of approximately 9.5 kms was covered. Lunch stop …

Lunch. (Ian pic and caption.)

Lunch on Government Track. (Ian pic and caption.)

… was brief as there was drizzle approaching.   On the return to the car park some hikers took an old short cut which gave them a minute advantage.

Hot drinks were enjoyed at the Wobbly Goat in Outram, …

Last of the Summer Wine. (Adrienne pic.)

Last of the Summer Wine. (Adrienne pic.)

… before returning to Mosgiel. – Betty and Jim.

 24. 17/2/2016. Trampers. Government Track. Leader: Various.
At the car park, Bush Road, we looked towards the silver peaks. It was raining. We were told the wind was 50k plus, so we changed our mind and decided on the Government Track.
Arrived at the lower Waipori car park. In front of us was bright blackberries. To the left a tree full of apples, and a deafening sound of crickets.
Five of us set off up Government Track. Morning tea at the grass clearing. No wind, little sun.

At the top of the Government Track, we had lunch in the sun.

Lunch in the sun. (Helen pic)

Lunch in the sun. (Helen pic)

After lunch, walked along …

Along the pole line (Helen pic)

Along the pole line (Helen pic)

… and down the pole line to the hut.

Down the pole line to the hut (Heb pic and caption)

Down the pole line to the hut. (Heb pic and caption)

Turned right, found a tape marker which led us over and down to the style on the track just below where we had morning tea. Carried on down the track to the car park.
Heard lots of wood pigeons and bellbirds. A great day’s tramp. About 17k, and quite warm temperatures. – Heb.

23. 21/10/2015 Hikers. Government Track. Leaders: Betty and Jim.
22. 27/5/2015. Trampers. Government Track, return part Kowhai Spur.
GPS of route, courtesy Ken. Government Track-part of Kowhai Spur (Ken pic and caption)

GPS of route, courtesy Ken. Government Track-part of Kowhai Spur. Walked 17.1 km; ave 4.4 km/hr; moving time 3hr.54min; climbed 480mtrs. (Ken pic and caption)

The day looked suspect, with some light drizzle, but the turn out at the carpark was very good, & we had 6 members on our adventure for the day. We motored out to the carpark at the Government Track where it was cold & still drizzling, so it was on with the rain jackets before we set off. Once into the bush, the rain became a non issue, but everybody kept their jackets on to combat the cold.
We had a short stop for morning tea,
1. Packing up after morning tea. (Ken pic)

1. Packing up after morning tea. (Ken pic)

then pushed on towards the very muddy part of the track, just before the open grassed area, where we hoped that our planned route would bring us back to on the return journey. The track was in excellent condition, as it had just been cleared, apart from some large trees down across the upper part, which we had to crawl under.We stopped just short of the top for lunch, as there was a cool wind blowing, & the bush gave us shelter. Then it was onto the Poleline track…
2. Looking back along Poleline track. (Ken pic and caption)

2. Looking back along Poleline track. (Ken pic and caption)

…which had some snow remnants lying on it.
3. Trudging through the snow grass. (Ken pic and caption)

3. Trudging through the snow grass. (Ken pic and caption)

We estimated the distance to the top of Kowhai Spur to be about 1Km, but were surprised to find it was actually over 2kms, but when we got to the top & looked down on the amazing views of the Taieri & surrounds,
4. View from top of Kowhai Spur. (Ken pic and caption)

4. View from top of Kowhai Spur. (Ken pic and caption)

5. another view from top. (Ken pic and caption)

5. another view from top. (Ken pic and caption)

it was worth the trudge through the snow. We made our way down the steep track till we came to the hut on the true right of the spur,
6. Hut where we turned off Kowhai Spur. (Ken pic and caption)

6. Hut where we turned off Kowhai Spur. (Ken pic and caption)

where we left the spur, & went down through a very steep paddock heading back to the Government Track. This part of the trip was quite hard, due to the steepness, & the muddy tracks formed by cattle movement. However, we were soon within sight of the Government Track, & didn’t even have to climb a fence to get back onto it. We came out at the first fence with a stile over it, [the boundary of the privately owned land] on the uphill side of the grassed area. Then it was a brisk walk back to the cars, & the trip home, punctuated with a stop at Outram…
7. Latest Cafe footwear fashion. (Ken pic and caption)

7. Latest Cafe footwear fashion. (Ken pic and caption)

8. Trampers coffee club. (Ken pic and caption)

8. Trampers coffee club. (Ken pic and caption)

…for the “Trampers Coffee Club”. – Ken.
21. 12/6/2013. Trampers. Government Track. Styx Rd return.
6 trampers ventured out for the walk up Government Track today. We stopped at a “dry area” for morning tea, at about 10am, then carried on to the top at Styx Rd. where we had lunch in the sun. The sign at the bottom had said 2 1/2 hrs to the top, & that’s very much what it took us.
Lunch

Lunch at top of Government Track. (Ken pic and caption)

After lunch we had a discussion on whether we tried Kowhai Spur, or just go back down the way we had come. The unknown condition of Kowhai Spur [very steep & slippery] meant that the decision was made to go back the way we had come, so we set off, & arrived back at the cars at 3:00pm.
Thanks to the earlier start time of 9:00 instead of 9:30, we were able to complete this 18.5km walk before it got too cold in the afternoon, & it gave us a time buffer if somebody had injured themselves.
We walked 18.5km
moving time 4hr 15mins
climbed 364mtrs
– Ken.
20. 3/10/2012. Both. Government Track. Leaders: Graham, Judy.
There were 17 of us, (but one turned back before the paddock). We did between 8-10 km in total, getting up to the beech section for lunch (much further than the Hikers did last time). The wind across the farm paddock was as severe as the last time the Trampers had done it. Several in the group were doing the track for their first time and were equally amazed at the ease of the gradient, and appalled at the muddy section just prior to the paddock. (They didn’t know how much better the present marked route was than some earlier routes through the slough.) This, and some other tricky bits took careful negotiating for those unsteady on their feet.
Four of the Trampers left early and did the whole track. Ken’s GPS record shows that they did 18.2 km at 4.4km/hr average. Moving time was only 4hrs 9min.Total ascent was 523 mtrs. They took an extended lunch break, making stopped time 1hr 19min. – Ian.
19. 6/4/2011. Both. Government Track. Medium. Leaders: Les and Margaret.
There is no comment from the hikers on this one, so here is a report from the trampers.
It mitigated against the intended ‘bothness’, but the leaders generously permitted three appreciative trampers to set off to do the whole track. The sign posts indicate 2.5 hours up and 2 hours down. The trampers almost made the 2 hours down but fell well short of the time up. 19 km there and back!
When we arrived at the ‘paddock’, the predicted wind was there in full force and it was a real battle to make our way across and around its slope and back into the shelter of the bush. The sloppy muddy gully just below the paddock gets no better as time goes by, despite the many attempts to re-route the track to avoid it.

GPS of Government Track from the road to the Pole Line. Courtesy Ken. Depicts how close Kowhai Spur is to the track. The multitude of gullies traversed by the track are clearly depicted. 19 km ret.

The track was well-cleared and the gradient as usual beautifully steady.

A shot of beech trees taken looking across one of the upper gullies.

Track disappearing up into the gully. Taken from the same spot as the one above.

The above pic shows only a modest amount of pig rooting. It was much worse in other places with us having to tread a new path amongst the upturned soil.
Temperatures were cooler up at the Pole Line so we retreated from it back from the gusty wind into the shelter of the manuka bush to munch a quick lunch. There was nothing tempting us to linger long.
Doug set a good pace on the return trip and the clear track allowed us to step it out with a good swing.
Back at the exposed paddock, we found the wind had lost none of its force, but fortunately it was a tail-wind this time. Then it was the atrocious gully again. The paddock and its gully had to be the worst features of the tramp. – Ian
18. 3/2/2010. Hikers. Government Track. Medium. Leaders: Neil, Lex.
Location: 30 km.
17. 9/9/2009 Government Track, return Kowhai Spur. Leaders: Ian, Sabina.
Starting Government track. George

Beginning Government track. George, Susan

A bit further along the track. Susan, Sabina

A bit further along the track. Susan, Sabina, Glenice

Morning tea on the paddock.

Morning tea on the paddock. Susan, Ken, George, Glenice, Sabina

Through the silver beech section. Ken.

Through the silver beech section. Ken, George, Susan, Glenice, Sabina

Lunch at the pole line. George, Glenice

Lunch at the pole line. George, Glenice

Lunch on other side of track. Sabina, Susan

Lunch on other side of track. Sabina (showing her colourful hat), Susan

DOC sign pointing back down the track.

DOC sign indicating back down the track.

Start Kowhai Spur. Ken.

View from top of Kowhai Spur. Waipori Lake and Taieri River gorge beyond. Ken Susan, George, Glenice, Sabina.

Further down.

Shaws Hill road and ridge from a little further down Kowhai Spur. Sabina, Susan detectable.

Rest by former hut site. Glenice, Sabina

Preparing to rest near site of former hut which had been moved up the hill behind camera.. Glenice, Sabina

16. 17/9/2008 Waipori Gorge Area, 1860s Government Track, Waipori Leaders: Bill H, Peter B
The 'disturbed' kanuka

The ‘disturbed’ kanuka

The ‘disturbed’ kanuka

The programme said ‘Waipori’, but it really meant Bill H’s traditional walk up the “Gummint Track”. As a past long-serving employee in the area (both on a farm and in electricity supply) he was the ideal leader.  As slips had made the upper reaches of the track difficult, the 15 of us began walking from the end of the seal up the Waipori road, then crossing farmland and having morning tea beside the river. After that we were following the route taken by early prospectors up the steady incline of the old 1860s Government standardised track for drays and horses to the Central Otago Goldfields. After an initial 3-minute climb, the track maintains a remarkably consistent, gentle gradient considering theodolites were not used and the construction teams used handtools!  The day was calm and mild, and spring growth was evident in the lovely mixed broadleaf forest, with signs of fuschia flowers and kowhai. The track was carpeted with innumerable ’skellingtons’ of fuschia leaves (the fuschia is one of the few deciduous NZ trees) which made it soft and springy and patterned.There were also Kanuka, Matai, Totara and juvenile Lancewood. At one point there were 4 Kanuka alongside the track that must have had a disturbed childhood as they all had right-angle bends in them! The sound of the river gradually receded, and at lunchtime we came out onto cleared farmland with cattle and a good view up the gorge to look at while we ate. We returned by the same route.  There was some birdlife to remark upon– paradise ducks, bellbirds, warblers- but the most remarkable was at a willow tree on the river flat in which Arthur counted 13 wood pigeons, all greedily gorging great gulps of green tips.  A very pleasant walk of about 16km through lovely local terrain.  – Bob

15. 12/12/2007. Hikers. Government Track. Medium. Leaders: Bill H

Resting among the trees

Only seven hikers took advantage of the ideal place to be on a very warm & humid day, the lovely bush of the Government Track in the Waipori area. It is a lovely place for a hike. Beautiful bush and beech forest. Lots of birds singing in the trees and great views of surrounding bush and road to Waipori Falls. The track is not too difficult and although you go fairly high it is a relatively gentle climb most of the way. With only a small number we took our time and lapped up the cool and pleasant conditions of the track. Morning tea sitting by the track just after 10am, and then, about 12noon, 5 of us decided we would stop for lunch. Two of the group thought they’d like a bit more of a challenge so went further up the track and had lunch before heading back. Those of us in the larger group found a really lovely spot in the beech forest to sit, chat and enjoy our lunch break. Then it was back down the track, (down hill all the way!) to the cars. All agreed we had had a very enjoyable days hiking. – Bev.

14. 29/11/2006. Hikers. Government Track. Medium. Leaders: Arthur and Barbara.
13. 5/7/2006. Both. Government Track. Leaders: (Easy+): Doug M, Bob H; (Easy):  Arthur & Barbara
12. 21/9/2005 Arthur & Barbara, Bill H, Lance & Lois
11. 22/9/2004. Hikers. Government Track, return. Easy. Leaders: Jack and Rosemary, Frank and Lesley.
10. 26/5/2004 Lesley S, Irene, Les W, Mary M, Ray
9. 22/10/2003. Both. Government Track. Medium. Leaders: Trampers: Helen S, Kerri; Hikers: Mary M, Barbara L.
8. 13/2/2002. Combined. Government Track. Leaders:
7. 6/12/2000. Government Track. Leaders: Jack and Rosemary, Mary Y.
13/9/2000 Bill H, Bill & Pat
6. 7/7/1999. Government Track. Leaders: Les W, Mary M, Ray.
5. 7/10/1998. Government Track. Leaders: Lance and Lois.
4. 16/7/1997. Government Track. Leaders: Hugh, Bill H, Lesley S
3. 23/10/1996. Hikers. Government Track, Waipori. Leaders: Jack and Rosemary, Ted.
2. 14/12/1994. Government Track. Easy. This is a morning walk only, and as it is our last official tramp for the year, please bring some finger food to share for lunch, to be eater at the picnic ground. Leaders: Denise, Mary Y, Les and Mavis.
1. 13/3/1991 Government Track, Waipori Gorge, return Kowhai Spur. Nice bush and tussock walk. Average+. Leaders: Denise, Hugh and Judith, Ria de J

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Aug 29 2018

Steve Amies and Associated tracks.

Published by under Trampers

19. 29/8/2018. Trampers. Steve Amies /  Little Coal Tracks. M. Leader: Arthur.
7 very keen Trampers did a bush circuit in the Silverstream Valley. Parking at the Pump-house we followed the track past the swing bridge, then up to Tunnel Track to take us to McRaes Weir and the shortcut up to Steve Amies, down Little Coal Creek Track, and returned on Racemans.
Morning tea was taken a partway along Tunnel Track, above a large slip, where there is a good view across to The Chalkies. The shortcut track up to Steve Amies is a bit of a grunt, but taking our time we easily overcame it.
The day had shown promise before we started, but the cloud was low down on all the surrounding hills and high up on the Steve Amies Track the rain started. On reaching the top, at Trig Q, we immediately started down the Little Coal Creek Track.
We stopped to have our lunch in the first relatively sheltered place in the bush. It was colder, so we didn’t stop long before following the track on down.
The lower half, especially, of the Little Coal Creek Track is steep in places and was slippery and rather treacherous from the rain that had just fallen.
A variety of techniques were tried for descending the trickier patches – stepping, slipping, sliding, …

Very slippery track back down. (Gordon pic and caption.)

… falling, …

Still very slippery ? (Gordon pic and caption.)

… tree hugging, and even the rolly-polly method. Afterwards I was assured that all had thoroughly enjoyed (?) the experience – which seemed strange to me.

The last leg of our trip was simple in comparison, along the Racemans Track.

Everybody happy to be on level ground. (Gordon pic and caption.)

One final obstacle. (Gordon pic and caption.)

We were back in the cars around 3.15 pm, and I have it on good authority that we had walked 15 km.

The rain had eased off later, and conditions were pleasant other than being cold at lunch time. The leader awards a Gold Star to each of the party for their contribution to a great day’s tramping.

Upon returning to Mosgiel it was decided it would be inappropriate to visit any coffee shop, due to travel stain. – Art.

18. 14/9/2016. Swine Spur – Rollinsons Road –  Steve Amies – Tunnels Track. M. Car Shuttle. Leader: Arthur H.
A clear sky, brilliant sunshine, and only a light breeze – perfect.
After setting up a car shuttle for later, 6 enthusiastic trampers began the day’s operations from Rollinsons Road, to walk up the full length of the Swine Spur track.

We reached the junction with Possum Busters at 9.55 a.m. and made this our morning tea stop. There was some dissension about stopping early, but hey, the leader is the boss. (He has to have the occasional privilege.)

Morning tea spot. (Arthur pic and caption.)

Morning tea spot. (Arthur pic and caption.)

Further up we met 4 trampers and a dog coming down – and soon found that it was the same group that had had morning tea with us a week ago on the Tunnel Track. Pleasantries were exchanged.

Our group powered up the steep upper part of Swine Spur, …

High up on Swine Spur. (Arthur pic and caption.)

High up on Swine Spur. (Arthur pic and caption.)

… the talking hardly lessening, …

Near top of Swine Spur. (Arthur pic and caption.)

Near top of Swine Spur. (Arthur pic and caption.)

… and we topped out at 10.45 a.m.

At top of Swine Spur. (Arthur pic and caption.)

At top of Swine Spur. (Arthur pic and caption.)

After a brief pause to enjoy the view, we walked the road, passing the VOR aviation beacon on the highest point of Swampy, going down now.

After 50 minutes on the road we were on the track, heading in to Trig Q. On the way past, we stopped to check out the picnic area before heading down the Steve Amies Track.

With perfect timing we stopped at Bryan Freeman’s Memorial Seat to enjoy our lunch. A very pleasant spot with the sun filtering through onto us.

Lunch on Steve Amies. (Arthur pic and caption.)

Lunch on Steve Amies. (Arthur pic and caption.)

Note – Bryan Freeman was a keen tramper who died here on the Steve Amies Track in 2011. He was the son of Jim Freeman, who is remembered by the track named after him.

We continued down the Steve Amies Track until turning off to the left onto the short steep track that took us down to McRaes Weir and “the rope”.

From there we followed the Tunnel Track, which in turn follows the contour. Easy track but very enjoyable. No-one showed any enthusiasm to enter the tunnels, but we did admire them in passing.

We reached our tramps’ end at the road at 2.15 p.m. My car was nearby and it soon re-united Neil M. with his one at our starting point.

And so, back to Mosgiel. The good weather, together with the variety encountered during the tramp had made for an enjoyable day.

The distance tramped was around 11 km (at a very rough guesstimate). – Arthur.

17. 14/10/2015. Trampers. Little Coal and Steve Amies.

The tramp today was into the Silverstream Tunnels track, up Steve Amies track, & down Little Coal Creek track, with lunch at the picnic area near trig Q at the top,

Lunch at trig Q at top (Ken pic and caption)

Lunch at trig Q at top (Ken pic and caption)

& back along Racemans

Return on Racemans (Ken pic and caption)

Return on Racemans (Ken pic and caption)

to the cars.
This was an  uneventful trip, with no problems encounted. The weather was great, cloudy conditions with very little breeze.
Eight trampers took part in the days activities, including a stop at a viewing spot …

Enjoying the view (Ken pic and caption)

Enjoying the view (Ken pic and caption)

16. 15/10/2014. Trampers. Little Coal Creek, Steve Amies. H.
Little Coal Creek, steep in places, can be slippery.
4 of us set off from the Pump House up Silverstream Valley, onto the Racemans Track. Calm weather. Had morning tea at a sunny spot at the junction of Little Coal Creek track. Took off one layer of clothing. On the ascent, stopped a few times to take in the views. Had lunch at Trig Q. The weather was so calm the bushes were not moving at all at 505m.
After lunch, we went down Steve Amies track, stopping to take  in the views north, south and west and listening to the birds, – the noises of them!
Back along Racemans Track to the car. Tramp enjoyed. The biggest comment on the trip was ‘How calm’. – Heb.

15. 29/7/2015 Trampers. Little Coal, North Coal.

Racemans Little Coal North Coal McRaes Weir Tracks

GPS map of route, courtesy Ken. Racemans Little Coal North Coal McRaes Weir Tracks. Walked 14.5 km; 4.3 km/h ave; 3h 23m moving; climbed 460mtrs.

Today was a hurried change of tramp, as when I got up to the Bullring for the start of our tramp, it was foggy, blowing, & VERY cold, so I made the decision to cancel this, & meet at the start of Silverstream Rd. Where we decided what we would do for the day.
We then made our way to the pump house car park at Whare Flat, & set off along Racemans track. When we reached Little Coal Creek track we decided to go up there, & come back down North Coal Creek, if the tracks were suitable. The ground was surprisingly dry, so we had no hesitation about carrying on. After struggling up Little Coal, with numerous stops to regain our composure, we arrived at the junction with North Coal track, so we went down there a short distance out of the breeze to have lunch.

1. three of the group at lunch

Three of the group at lunch. (Ken pic and caption)

We were all looking forward to descending North Coal, as last time we did it, Finn, Dermot’s dog was the one who led us in the correct direction, as the track was in very bad condition due to storm damage, & was non existent in parts. However, the Green Hut Track group have been through there & reopened it, & put in some more markers, so it is very easy to follow, but quite difficult travelling.
On the way back we went around the McRaes Weir track to lengthen our journey a bit, & walked down the unmarked track that comes out beside the picnic table down near the Silverstream. We stopped here for another cuppa before we walked out to the cars.
There were no incidents today , apart from me slipping off the edge of Little Coal  track at one point, & managing to arrest my slid with the aid of a handy tree. No damage apart from pride !!
The day had a few light showers, but didn’t require wet weather gear, however it paid to keep moving, as the temperature was quite cool with the small amount of breeze.

14. 1/2/2012 Both. Steve Amies from Access Road. Leaders: Arthur and Barbara.

Sixteen of us left our cars at the locked gate on Rollinson access Rd and made our way up to the Track Clearers’ Picnic area. The leaders took us round many of the little nooks and crannies (they just seem to multiply of their own accord), stopping to inspect the labels fronting each bush planting. Of poignant note in front of one bush was a label printed with the name of Les Murcott, whose funeral a number of us had attended only a fortnight earlier.

We stopped off for our tea break.

Arthur led us down and across to Trig Q, and then on down Little Coal Creek until we got to the look-out. We careful negotiated some quite steep parts of the track and avoided any casualties. Then came the more  arduous climb back up to the trig and across to the Steve Amies.

This latter track had a much more moderate decline (we stuck to only its upper reaches!), past another look-out, before making another turn around further down, to wander back up to the trig and on to the picnic area for lunch.

On the way across the wee saddle, we stopped to investigate the meaning of a sign indicating a sheltered area, whose side track opened out to a large open area in the bush, marked with a large white wooden equal-armed cross, laid flat on the grass. After some discussion, we decided the area was also to serve as a helicopter emergency landing spot. (There was even a ‘waiting room’ bench for passengers.)

Back up at the picnic area, our leaders discovered for us yet another alcove with ample tables and seats for a comfortable lunch.

Our leaders took us out to the road by a route different from the one we had entered by, and lo and behold, a salubrious shelter, doubtless erected by the track clearers for their comfort. Bravo.

Then we had only a stroll back down Rollinson Road to the cars. A leisurely 5.5 km walk, (as measured by two with their measuring devices.) Thank you, Barbara and Arthur for your careful leadership. – Ian.

13. 17/10/2012. Trampers. Pumphouse, Racemans, Steve Amies, Little Coal Creek, Racemans, McRaes, Pumphouse.

GPS of route, courtesy Ken.We walked approx 14kmMoving time 3h 50minave 3.6km/hrTotal ascent 559m – Ken

Five of us had a great day doing the two ridges. The Steve Amies was as steep a struggle as ever at its foot. The easier bit at the top seemed much longer than the writer’s memory had shortened it. We had a leisurely lunch at the set of seats and tables a little beyond trig Q. Sunny and no wind. Great.

Then back again and down to where Little Coal Creek branches  off from North Coal. Again the first bit of climbing on Little Coal had escaped the writer’s memory. The steep ridge descent needed careful negotiating. One of the party was heard vowing it was a track they would never wish to ascend. Then it was off the ridge and down the side. The ground is so heavily littered with twigs and leaves that it is almost impossible to keep one’s feet on the steep bits.

Forgot to take photos! And the one below, taken back on the Racemans turned out mysteriously bad.

Taken on the Racemans on the return journey.

We elected to take the McRaes track back. The GPS of the route brings out the depththat the gully takes the track into before emerging back out again. We stopped en route for a drink break as it had been a longer day. We made our way around until turning off at the junction with the Tunnels Track onto the connecting track that took us down to emerge by the swing bridge.

A longer day – we got back out about 4 o’clock. Considerable height climbed and descended. A good work-out. And it was our good luck that the promised rain held off until we were back in the cars again. – Ian.

12. 8/6/2011. Trampers. Tunnels, North Coal, Steve Amies, ret. Medium.

We decided to do today’s tramp from the school house at Whare Flat. We parked in the normal position by the house, & joined the tunnels track at the normal place [wire across stream]. We walked along the Tunnels track/Racemans track [had morning tea in the pine trees again] until we came to Little Coal Creek track, where we had a meeting on whether we go up that one or carry on to the North Coal Creek track. Nth Coal won out, so we went there, & up Nth. Coal Creek. We had lunch overlooking Longridge, from that nice lookout point.It was quite a late lunch, as we decided to get to the top [almost] before having lunch. [It was 12:15 when we got to the bottom of the Nth. Coal Creek track.]

After this we went up to the picnic area, …

… & road, where we had another meeting about how we go back again. It was decided that we go down Steve Amies track, so off we went, with everybody starting to get a bit tired. We arrived back at the cars at 5:00pm, having started at just before 10:00am.

We walked [according to the GPS] 20.2 km, & did a total ascent of 578mtrs. Total moving time 5hrs 2min. moving ave. 4km/hr. overall ave 2.8km/hr. Stopped time 2hr 11min. So it was a big day for the 6 of us, but all enjoyed the walk. I think they will sleep well tonight !!!
The girls enjoyed the picnic area etc at the top by the road, along with the view from the lunch spot, so quite a bit of time was spent around there, as they had not been there before.
We started our descent at 2:30, so it took 2 1/2 hrs to walk back. Maybe better to do this tramp when we have a 9:00am start, as it was starting to get a bit dark by the time we got back. Also, we were not wasting any time while walking along the Racemans etc, much faster than we would normally be going. The trip could be shortened a bit by going in at the pumphouse, but how much that would cut off I don’t know.The day was fine & sunny, but cool & calm. The tracks were mainly dry, & only muddy in the normal Racemans track positions. The hill climbs/descents were quite good. Some parts of the tracks need a bit of clearing, but not too bad in general. – Ken.

11. 18/3/2009. Hikers. Steve Amies from Access Rd Hikers E+ Bev H, Joyce S

10. 25/7/2007. Hikers. Access Road, Steve Amies. Leaders: Bob H, Graham.

9. 19/5/2007 Trig Q from Silverstream via Steve Amies track. Steve Amies Track Circuit Leaders: Ria L, Hazel

8. 13/9/2006 Tunnels – Steve Amies – Little Coal Creek – Racemans. Medium+. Leaders: Bob H, Arthur H
7. 27/7/2005. Hikers. Steve Amies, Trig Q. Bob H, Les W, Mary M.
6. 27/7/2005 Tunnel, McRaes Weir, Steve Amies, Trig Q, Picnic Area; Little Coal Creek, Racemans. Bob H, Les W, Mary M

5. 21/7/2004 Trampers. Lake Whare, Steve Amies, Trig Q. Medium. Leaders: Ian, Bob H

Frost on Possum Busters. Bill

Frost on Possum Busters. Bill

Frost on Possum Busters. Bruce

Frost on Possum Busters. Bruce

New Bridge by Track-clearers. Ian

New Bridge by Track-clearers. Ian

4. 9/7/2003. Trampers. Tunnels, McRaes, Steve Amies, North Coal Creek, Racemans.Medium. Leaders: Irene, Doug J.

Bill at rocky point in Racemans

Bill at rocky point in Racemans

Rocky clambering on North Coal track

Rocky patch on North Coal track. Glenice, Lex, Doug

Trig Q. Doug M, Doug J, Lex, Pat

Trig Q. Doug M, Doug J, Lex, Pat

Tramp end. Irene, Glenice, Lex, Doug M, Doug J, Pat

Tramp end. Irene, Glenice, Lex, Doug M, Doug J, Pat

3. 30/4/2003. Steve Amies, Trig Q, Swineburn Photos

Tea

Lunch stop. Ria.

Microwave. Doug.

dwn

View

 

2. 23/10/2002. Tunnels – Steve Amies – Little Coal Creek – Racemans. Medium+. Leaders: Lex, Bob H, Wendy B.

1. 2/2/2000. Trig Q from Silverstream via Steve Amies track. Steve Amies Track Circuit Leaders: Peter B, Lex

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Aug 22 2018

Signal Hill tramps

Published by under Trampers,Year round

Distance Chingford from carpark: 20 km.
Follow Old Main North Road to Cleghorn Street which has the best view of the harbour. Walkway sign.
Walk starts starts at the gate on right, up McGregors Hill. Beyond stile Pine plantation on 3rd stile at summit.
Gravel road 10 minutes to end. Locked gate. Last stile. Signal Hill road.

16. Signal Hill Tramp 22/08/2018. Leaders: Neil and Margreet

A large contingent of 21 trampers set out from the Otago Yacht Club in a ‘lazy’ southwest breeze and threatening rain. We walked to Ravensbourne on the cycle/walk way admiring the recently completed landscaping and fitness course. Crossing SH88 we climbed the steep zig zag track from the WW2 Memorial to Manuka St and the beginning of the Signal Hill track.

Morning tea was at the nearby playground

Morning tea with Harbour views. (Gordon pic and caption.)

and then, in light rain, we climbed steadily to break out of the bush at the ‘Plateau’. A sharp right turn onto the nuggety but sheltered Telecom track soon had us at the Monument.

Monument view. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Great views over Dunedin up there, and we checked out the Centennial Memorial with its bronze male and female figures representing ‘History’ and ‘The Thread of Life’. 

To add interest to the tramp we then walked down the road and turned off onto a vehicle track which climbed steeply

Steep pinch to summit Signal Hill. (Gordon pic and caption.)

to the communication complex on top of Signal Hill. There we stopped for lunch

Sheltered lunch break. (Gordon pic and caption.)

sheltering from the cold wind and taking in the sweeping views

View from lunch stop. (Gordon pic and caption.)

from Taiaroa Head to Mt. Cargill and Forrester Park.

The return hike was via a 4WD track that crossed all the formed downhill mountain bike trails.

Not far to cars now. (Gordon pic and caption.)

The track ended up at Logan Park High School and it was then an easy stroll past the Stadium back to our cars. Of note was the old Fever Hospital near Logan Park which finally closed its door in 1952 and was then bought by the University as accommodation for medical students.

After the 15km trek, we all enjoyed a coffee or ‘cuppa’ at Emerson’s Brewery.

Neil and Margreet Simpson.

15. 14/2/2018. Hikers. Cleghorn Street to Normanby Pub via Signal Hill and Centennial Memorial. M. Leaders: Pam and Ian.

Route map, courtesy Ian.

Clive pic.

Clive pic.

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

Elaine enjoying bath. (Judy pic).

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

Lunch break. (Judy pic)

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

GPS of route, courtesy Ken

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

The view down the harbour was wonderful

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

Lunch on Signal Hill roadside

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

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

 

St Leonards

St Leonards below.

Charles Cone

Mount Charles and Harbour Cone on Peninsula

Heads

Roseneath, Port Chalmers and Heads

Lunch

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

Dunedin

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

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

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

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

Dunedin from Centennial Memorial

Dunedin from Centennial Memorial

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

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Aug 22 2018

Harbour Cone, Broad Bay, Turnbulls Bay, Bacon Street, Peggys Hill, Broad Bay

Published by under Trampers

No. 49 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “Harbour Cone, Peggy Hill Larnach Castle – Farm”

Location: 32 km.

Trampers park cars at Broad Bay. DCC Public Land; Hikers park at top of Bacon Street.

17. 22/8/2018. Hikers. Harbour Cone Walk. H. Leaders: Jim and Betty.

18 Hikers started off at sea level

Tea stop on way up from Bacon Street to Highcliff Road. (Ian pic and caption.)

and most made it to the top or 12,370 steps and 121 floors up to the summit.

Jim pic.

Betty pic.

The weather was cold, damp and could have been kinder for us.  The surrounding views were some-what reduced.

A very memorable walk. – Jim and Betty

16. 2018-07-11. Trampers. Harbour Cone. E-M. Leader: Arthur.

A very pleasant sunny mid-winter’s day arrived for our weekly outing.

The cars parked at the Broad Bay Boating Club and 13 trampers went off walking along the harbour side to Bacon Street.

Morning tea was taken in the dry area under some large pine trees,

Morning tea break. (Gordon pic and caption.)

near the beginning of the walking track.

We followed on up the old Bacon street walking rack to the road.

Heading up start of track. (Gordon pic and caption.)

After crossing over (why did the chicken cross the road?) we found that the stone ruins of the old Allen House had been fenced off. Some timber framing, also new, was obviously in place to support the stone wall and prevent it toppling over.

From the ruins it was uphill all the way, but in time we picked our way through the rocks onto the summit of Harbour Cone. But the effort had been worth it as the scenery was magnificent.

View from summit. (Gordon pic and caption.)

The sunshine, and lack of any breeze allowed us to enjoy our time on top.

A cool breeze arrived just as we began the descent.

Heading back. (Gordon pic and caption.)

At 12 noon we found a sheltered spot (out of that breeze) to partake of the contents of our lunch boxes, and with a view looking out over Hoopers Inlet and surrounds.

After lunch we soon crossed back over Highcliff Road, down hill in the paddocks for a little, before the steep little climb up towards the castle. Everyone needed a breather then, but the hard work was all over.

It was easy now to follow the contour before descending on Camp Road (unformed), but still with interesting views of the harbour and environs. We arrived back at the cars at 1-45 pm after an enjoyable tramp in superb mid-winter conditions – the northerly wind had increased during the afternoon. Our group of 12, plus 1 guest (Eleanor’s daughter) had walked just over 10 km.

We drove back to Macandrew Bay and were shocked to find the coffee shop had closed down! After discussion we returned to Mosgiel and took our custom to the Blackstone Cafe, for our debriefing.

Coffee at Blackstone. (Helen pic and caption.)

Several had intended having an ice-cream at Macandrew Bay (another shop) but didn’t, in sympathy with the coffee drinkers, and so missed out entirely at Mosgiel – their sacrifice should not be forgotten!.

Thanks to all. – Art.

(15) 21/3/2018. Hikers. Bacon Street only.

The planned tramp to Harbour Cone had 22 trampers depart from Mosgiel in light rain.  During the drive to the start point the rain intensified, and it became a simple decision to abandon the tramp.  A coffee stop was suggested for the return trip to Mosgiel …

Coffee at the Good Oil. (Ian pic and caption.)

… which was attended by 19 of the party. -Cheers Jim.

14. 9/11/2016. Trampers. Harbour Cone.E+. Leader: Arthur.

The early rain cleared before assembly time at the car park and conditions were looking good. Ten eager trampers travelled in three cars to park by the Broad Bay Boating Club. The sky was brighter in the vicinity compared to the cloud down on the hilltops back in the city direction. A northeast wind to start with, which later turned southwest.

As an experiment we had decided to do this (circuit) tramp anticlockwise. The club had previously only ever gone clockwise. A short road walk back took us to Camp Road. The ascent was variable, with some easier gradients in between the steeper ones.

Morning tea was taken after 30 minutes with the worst behind us. From there the view was excellent and we could look across to Harbour Cone which seemed a long way off.

We continued uphill, gently now, past the two decrepit old buildings where “elf and safety” signs warning of the hazard they presented were noted. A little further and we turned left towards Harbour Cone, down hill. Funny, but it didn’t seem that steep going down as it had climbing up that part on a previous occasion. And then up a little took us to join the uphill paddock track from Bacon Street. Easier going for a while got us to Highcliff Road, with a stile on each side to climb over. And then climbing some more.

A brief rest stop on Rocky Knob gave us good views, especially over Hoopers Inlet. On  a bit, before descending a little to view the ruins at Nyhon Farm (there is a sign at the site now).

From then on it was uphill all the way to the summit. Comments such as “don’t look up”, “take short steps”, and “just keep putting one foot in front of the other” were heard. All good advice.

The cool (but not cold) wind was behind us as we climbed, and helped push us up, at least psychologically. In a short time we were picking our way through the rocks and came to the trig station on top.

Harbour Cone trig. (Margreet pic.)

Harbour Cone trig. (Margreet pic.)

The 360 degree views available to us were just a tad hazy, but the Mt Cargill mast stayed hidden in the clouds. What a great place to be! Not far below us, to the east of north, the white buddhist shrine stood out clearly in the sunshine. It was only 11.40 but on the summit was the only place to have lunch, even if a little early. Just over the brow it was sunny and nicely sheltered for this important ritual.

Lunch. (Margreet pic.)

Lunch. (Margreet pic.)

Thirty minutes for lunch and then it was downhill all the way.

Down from the top. (Helen pic and caption.)

Down from the top. (Helen pic and caption.)

We descended to the ruins of the Allen Farm

Old building. (Helen pic and caption.)

Old building. (Helen pic and caption.)

(no sign seen here), crossed the road, before going down the old track to Bacon Street.

Down track to Bacon Street. (Helen pic and caption.)

Down track to Bacon Street. (Helen pic and caption.)

A walk back around the harbourside took us back to the cars at 1.00 p.m. The day’s distance was 8.25 km, not long perhaps, but we had quite a bit of uphill work. The summit of Harbour Cone is 315 metres by the way.

Several commented that doing an anticlockwise circuit had worked very well and it gave us the opportunity to have our lunch on the summit.

On the way home two cars stopped at Macandrew Bay to allow their occupants to visit the coffee shop. Another very enjoyable day’s tramp out on the fresh air over. – Art.

13. 22/7/2015 Trampers. Harbour Cone

Harbour Cone 2 GPS of route courtesy Ken.

Harbour Cone 2 GPS of route courtesy Ken. We walked 10km; 3.6km/h ave; 2h 45min moving; total ascent 586m; max height 358m.

I must be getting old, I put the group wrong on where we were starting the tramp from, I had it in my mind that we were going to Portobello — how wrong was I !!! I apologise for the mix up !
Anyway, after we arrived at Bacon St. we parked up & made ready for the days exercise. 10 trampers, some new to the group set off, & we stopped at the normal spot under the Macrocarpas just past the top end of Bacon street, where the ground is dry, for morning tea. For today’s tramp, I had decided that we would go up the marked track in the paddocks, instead of climbing up the fence line track. This was a new way for all of us, which made it more interesting.
As we made our way up, I could see that it was going to be a longer walk going this way up to Harbour Cone, than the fence line track would be. However the gradient is much more gentle.
We all made it to the top of Harbour Cone, some in better condition than others !! So we spent some time up there admiring the views,…

1 Atop Harbour Cone admiring the stunning views

1 Atop Harbour Cone admiring the stunning views

… & resting up before carefully negotiating the boulders on the way back down.
Now, there was a water trough down near the bottom where you go through the gate by the stone wall in the next paddock, this water trough is fed by a pipe running down the hillside from above, & it is constantly overflowing, with the ground around & below it VERY WET, So, what does one member do — he walks down through the wet patch & promptly falls on his butt, then after standing up, he repeats this, just for good measure, & to make sure he was well covered in mud.!!! He arrived at the lunch stop by the stone wall looking very muddy & wet.
After lunch, we retraced our steps down into the valley, then up the other side to the Camp Rd. track below Larnachs Castle. This climb was almost the last straw for a couple in the group, but with some help everybody made it up there, & we had a lengthy rest break here for them to regain some energy, before setting off down Camp Rd.
When we reached the car park with the toilet in it at broad Bay [ where we should’ve stopped originally !!] I suggested that anybody who wanted to wait there could do so, & we would pick them up on the way back from getting the cars. this suggestion was eagerly pounced upon by 6 members of the group. [ now if we had parked there in the morning, all party members would’ve had to walk the full distance, so my mistake let them off the hook !]
The other 4 of us walked back to the cars, & then returned to pick up the ‘survivors’, & then we headed off to Macandrew Bay coffee shop for a chat session, & to keep up the ‘Trampers Coffee Club’ tradition.
I hope this trip which is really quite hard, doesn’t put off the new members we had on this tramp, as most of our tramps are not this steep. So hope to see you all again next week for our assault on Swampy summit.

12. 12/2/2014. Hikers. Harbour Cone from Bacon Street in Turnbull Bay. Leaders: Dorothy and Chris.

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Discretion being the better part of valour, the leaders spurned the steep fence track, choosing instead the much more graduated DCC yellow poled line one to the right, despite its many fence stiles. We had our cuppa amongst the clump of macrocarpa trees, (a point where a side track leads off to the right, through a gully and steeply up to underneath Larnachs Castle). But after our stop, we carried on up and across Highcliff Road to turn left and further up to Rocky Knob. Here the leaders and one or two others forewent the option of going further, allowing a hardy 12 to go over and across the next paddock, down through the gate by a stone wall and on up endlessly, it seemed, to the rocky-strewn summit of Harbour Cone.

Some of the 12 Hikers on top of Harbour Cone

Some of the 12 Hikers on top of Harbour Cone.

We returned down to lunch on the stone wall before going on to join the others on Rocky Knob. Then it was just simply to retrace our steps back down to the cars. Threatening rain on a couple of occasions failed to eventuate. The day was lovely and calm and not too hot. A perfect and satisfying tramp, well-planned by the leaders. – Ian.

11. 21/8/2013 Trampers. Bacon Street, Harbour Cone, Rock Knob, Camp Street.

Anti-clockwise GPS of route, courtesy Ken, (omitting Harbour Cone climb).

Stone walls of old settlement, adjoining Highcliff Road and below Harbour Cone.

After Harbour Cone climb, we went round via Rocky Knob and under Lanarch Castle. Half of us chose to go partly by Highcliff Road and then contour round Peggys Hill, the other half to follow the track poles over paddocks, deeply down through a gully and then very STEEPLY up to meet the others under the north side of Larnach Castle, where we lunched. – Ian

Heads from lunch spot on north slop under Lanarch Castle, just above derelict sheds of Lanarch’s old Model Farm.

Panorama video clip from north slope below Lanarch Castle

Hedge invariably beautifully trimmed

Hoopers Inlet to Highcliff Rd. Otago Peninsula
Accessed from Hoopers Inlet Road. 2.20 ret. Route. Manager: DCC CAM
Very steep track. Suitable for experienced and agile parties only.

10. 28/4/2010. Trampers. Harbour Cone from Hoopers Inlet Track and Nyhon Track. Hard. Leader: Ian

The day was fine. A week of wet weather had stymied any recce, so this was it. Thanks to Antony Hamel’s description and map in his book Tracks and Trails around Dunedin, the leader was confident we could readily find our way. Not. First mistake up the Nyhon track was to turn right at the first stile. (It should have been the second). However, an inviting gully presented itself, so this was the route up, we thought. Not. It was very steep but we made it to what we first thought must be Rocky Knob, even if it looked a little different from what some of us remembered it as.

Hoopers Inlet from first knoll. (Ken pic.)

Morning tea in the sun on the knoll was very pleasant. But confusingly, a small distance away was another knoll, slightly higher.

Second knoll across from first knoll. Doug. (Ken pic.)

This too, when reached, didn’t quite match up to our recollections. It was only when we had made our way through an old homestead macrocarpa-surrounded block of stone walls

Interesting remains.

and up a further rise that we realised where we really were.  There, down a slope to our left was the obvious vehicle track that descends from the true Rocky Knob. An easy walk up, and we were there.

From there it was over well-remembered ground

Rocky Knob behind us.

to then grind our way up to Harbour Cone.

The long climb up.

A short stop to admire the view and then back down again, across to Rocky Knob, and down the vehicle track to zigzag  into the gully below the knob – the gully we should have taken on the way up. There we stopped for lunch.

About to stop for lunch. Beyond, track angles up hillside.

and were met by Ken who had more adventurously taken the original steep descent down through the bush.

Overlooking steep marked descent, adventurously taken by Ken from Rocky Knob.

He had made it all right, but not without entangling a hand in some vicious bush lawyer.
After lunch, accompanied by the squawks of a complaining bellbird, we made our way down through some bush, and across some marshy reeds on a narrow netting-covered boardwalk.

But then, surprise. Markers took us up steeply to hug a fence line over a rise to descend further along, now very steeply and to the marshland again.

The steep fence line track. Wasn’t there another way?

Another board, bridging a stream, stile to climb and we were out into a grass paddock again.

Before us loomed the Nyhon Track climbing (plenty of steepness again) up over a hill. We had plenty of time available so we decided to follow it across to Sandymount Road. It was muddy and slippery but we made it. (Was this now the fourth or fifth hill we had climbed that day?)  At the top we decided to carry on to Sandymount Road rather than retrace our steps back down again) and do a round trip. At the road,

Nyhon Track sign on Sandymount Road. (Ken pic.)

we carried on down and back across to Hoopers Inlet and the cars. It had been a good hard day, but all seemed to have enjoyed it, even a visitor who had learnt about us and had seen the website. And there were nine of us too. We had done good, to quote a client’s words to his barrister. – Ian

9. 8/12/2010. Hikers. Harbour Cone. Leaders: B Harvey, C Hughes.

8. 15/7/2009. Trampers. Bacon Street, Harbour Cone, Rock Knob, Camp Street.

We were immediately into macrocarpas and elected to stop here for our morning tea.

Cuppa under macrocarpas.

Cuppa under macrocarpas. Pat, Bill, Hazel, Doug, Arthur, Ria, George.

Despite DCC-inserted yellow-topped poles leading off up a valley, we stuck to the original public walkway taking us directly up the steep hill to the macrocarpas on Highcliff Road. Across the road and past the building ruins we turned our attention to the relentlessly steep ascent of Harbour Cone. The polled track took us straight up and through the boulders at the rocky top to the trig.

Harbour Cone. Ian (Bill pic)

Harbour Cone. Ian (Bill pic)

Amongst the wonderful views was the sight of two strange monuments in a property above Portobello as seen in the following pic.

Strange

Strange structures above Portobello. Viewed from top of Harbour Cone.

Returning down the south side of Harbour Cone we stopped for lunch in the saddle between the Cone and Rocky Knob. Then it was up a stone-walled track to the Knob. A virtual former cliff-face track led down to Hoopers Inlet, although now a new polled track made an easier descent around a farm track to the left, but that was not the way we were going today. We stopped to enjoy the sights of Sandymount, Hoopers Inlet and Varleys Hill but it was too windy to tarry.

Varleys Hill

Varleys Hill viewed from top of Rocky Knob. (Bill pic)

Going on down and back to Highcliff Road, most elected to go on up the road to enjoy a more level approach to Camp Road while four hardier (stupid?) ones took the yellowed poles track on across the road, down through a deep gully and then very steeply up to join the others where Camp Road enters the trees under Lanarchs Castle. Here we could take in another wonderful number of views.

Harbour Cone viewed from below Larnachs Castle

Harbour Cone viewed from below Larnachs Castle

The poled track took us around a contour under the Castle to eventually go steeply down into Broad Bay and so back to the cars. – Ian.

7. 30/11/2007. Broad Bay, Harbour Cone, Peggy Hill. Leaders: George
6. 11/7/2007. Trampers. Park Broad Bay Boat Club. Turnbull Bay, Harbour Cone, Peggys Hill. Leaders: George, Glenis
5. 2/12/1998. Harbour Cone, Peggy Hill – Larnach Castle. Leaders: Chris, Ria H, Jean.
4. 23/7/1997. Broad Bay, Peggys Hill, Larnach Castle Road. Leaders: Doug J, Irene, Jack R
3. 8/6/1994. Harbour Coone. Peggy Hill. Leaders: Jack R, Bob H, Barbara, Peg C
2. 29/1/1992. Harbour Cone. – A good warm up to start the year. Average+. Leaders: Jack R, Ted, Betty B, Jean A, Peter R

1. 21/12/1988 Leaders: Chris, Ria H, Jean.

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Aug 15 2018

Post Office Creek, Reid’s Station

Published by under Trampers,Year round

 No. 27 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “Mahinerangi – Post Office Creek. J Shaw. Year round.”
Impassable gorse-infestation beyond old Waipori School building (aft 2008).
33 km from car park.
16. 15/8/2018. Trampers. Verterburn Station. Leader: Jill.

11 trampers enjoyed a beautiful day on Andrew Reid’s property.  We parked at the woolshed and headed downhill before walking along a water race created by gold miners, to a now empty dam.

10409112nd—Quick stop morning tea. (Gordon pic and caption.)

On old water race above Post Office Creek. (Phil pic and caption.)

We marvelled at how this race had been dug into the hillsides – and can barely imagine the living conditions of the early miners, one must certainly hope their toiling brought rewards!!  There were a few fences to climb

Another Bloody fence. (Gordon pic and caption.)

but we were rewarded with nice views over Post Office Creek and then Lake Mahinerangi.

Surveying the Post Office Creek arm of Lake Mahinerangi. (Phil pic and caption.)

We then walked away from the lake, across a dam, and through paddocks up to the farm boundary with DCC forestry.  Lunch was eaten in the shelter of the trees.

A very welcome lunch break. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Then a few more ups and downs but we basically walked through the paddocks beside Mahinerangi Road back  to our cars.
A most enjoyable day.

Distance walked 15.5 km. – Jill.

15. 17/1/2018. Trampers. Post Office Creek. Leader: Jill.

Route map, courtesy Keith.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

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

An 18.5 km tramp enjoyed by all. – Jill.

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

GPS

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

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

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

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

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

Reflection

Reflection

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

 

Waipori Township

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

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

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

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

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

 

Apres-tramp coffee at Outram

Apres-tramp coffee at Outram

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Crss

Crossing Verter Burn. Peter Who? Molly

gate

The gate beyond Verter Burn.

School. Arthur H Bob Peter Arthur L

School. Arthur H Bob Peter Arthur L

Art

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

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

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Aug 08 2018

Purakaunui

Published by under Beach,Trampers,Year round

No. 97 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “Purekanui & Canoe Beach Year Round”

Meet Dn cars at Pt Chalmers. Park at Jetty. 39 km
At LOW TIDE it is possible to walk along the shore to Doctor’s Point.
Also pleasant stroll 1 km down southeastern end to mouth of inlet with scattered cribs.

15. 8/8/2018. Trampers. Purakaunui/Canoe Beach. Leaders: Jill and Judy D.

Another mild winter’s day spent in the Purakaunui area. We had to change plans as high tide was approx 12 md and we had  planned to walk from Doctors Point to Canoe beach before climbing the Mckessar track back to the cars.
Never mind, we parked at the Purakaunui domain

A quick morning tea. (Gordon pic and caption.)

and walked along the inlet track, passing the cutest little 140 year old holiday home on the seaward side of the track.  Not sure what will happen with the effects of global warming??

Onwards towards the open sea along another track where the amenities board have put in a couple of seats to enjoy the  view out to sea

Walking around the bay. (Gordon pic and caption.)

and up the north coast.

Back along the short track and up the road above the holiday homes scattered amongst the bush. There was continual birdsong along our way which was so pleasant. The inlet was very calm reflecting the quaint colorful boat sheds.

Some of the boat sheds in the bay. (Gordon pic and caption.)

We shifted along to Osborne where we walked out to the beach and up to the old maori pa Mapoutahi where we had a leisurely lunch with uninterrupted views.

Lunch Maori Point. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Out to canoe beach and back to Puraukanui beach to the cars.
We were very fortunate to see several Kingfishers, some diving, some Rosellas and even an Eagle sitting on some scrub out in the inlet.
It was decided to have coffee at Orokonui Sanctuary again with pleasant views. 12 trampers and about 8 kms travelled! A relaxing day had by all. – Jill.

14. 24/2/2016. Hikers. Beach, Caves, Spit, Urupu. E. Leaders: Jim and Betty.

GPS of Hikers' route.

GPS route map of Hikers’ tramp.

A turnout of 24 walkers enjoyed extremely good weather. Leaders were Betty & Jim Finnie.

On the day the planned section of the walk from Mapoutahi Pa site …

Cuppa stop on the Mapoutahi Pa peninsula.

Cuppa stop on the Mapoutahi Pa peninsula. Evidence of a new sandbar is visible at top of photo.

Just managed to catch the railcar before it got right into the tunnel.

Just managed to catch the railcar before it got right into the tunnel.

… to Doctors Point had to be curtailed due to the sea’s erosion of sand at the boulder pile. It appears that this had occurred in the last approximately 10 days.

After a short delay, seven of the more adventurous walkers made the difficult crossing of the boulder pile to inspect the caves while the balance of the walkers started into the remainder of the planned walk.

There was a regrouping for lunch part way along the Purakanui beach.

Following lunch on sand spit.

Getting up after a lazy lunch on sand spit.

The walk continued along the beach after an extended lunch …

View down sandspit. Potato Point

View down sandspit. Potato Point.

… and followed the inlet into the pine trees to the fenced Maori cemetery.

From the cemetery it was along the vehicle track back to the car park. – Jim and Betty.

13. 5/8/2015 Both. Purakaunui, Purakaunui Urupu, Doctors Point. Moderate. Leaders: Judy, Bob.
Purakanui Maori graves beach caves

GPS of route courtesy Ken. Purakanui Maori graves beach caves. (Ken pic and caption.) Walked 18km; 4.9km/h; 3hr 40min moving; climbed 260m.

Today was a joint tramp with the hikers, so we all drove to Purakanui & parked down by the old garage at the far end. Here, Judy, the leader on the day, suggested that as it was already late, the trampers carry on with what they had planned, & not worry about walking with the hikers. So we took off along the waterside track, & stopped at the picnic spot for a very late morning tea break.

The group at morning tea stop. (Ken pic and caption)

The group at morning tea stop. (Ken pic and caption)

Then it was on around the rest of the bay, & into the pine forest on the other side, to try & find the Maori graves in there. Now I have walked past, & driven past this point many times without realising there were any grave sites in amongst these trees, until about a year ago, when they were mentioned to me. I think most, or all of the other 7 trampers with me didn’t know about them either. So it was good to find the site & have a look at the few headstones there.

Headstone with nice inscription

Headstone with nice inscription (Ken pic and caption)

Maori Graves (Ken pic and caption)

Maori Graves (Ken pic and caption)

More Maori Graves

More Maori Graves (Ken pic and caption)

We then went onto the old PA site, had a quick look around, before settling down for lunch. Then it was a quick dash along the beach to the caves on the way to Doctors Point, & back again, before the tide forced a return route over the large rocks halfway along the beach.
All that remained was the long road walk, & the bayside track, back to the cars. – Ken.

Mopanui Reflection

Mopanui Reflection

Someone's dream cottage

Someone’s dream cottage (John pic)

A quirky letter box

A quirky letter box (John pic)

Hikers grouped at the plantation entrance

Hikers grouped at the plantation entrance (John pic)

Urupu Sign

Urupu Sign (John pic)

Lunch at the Cemetery

Lunch at the Cemetery (John pic)

Memorial

Memorial. “In Memory of Richard Driver, Late Gunner, N.Z. Permanent Artillery. Died April 6th 1887, Aged 27 Years. Erected By His Comrades.” (John pic)

Occasion? Location?

Coffee at Careys Bay Hotel. (John pic)

12. 27/5/2009 Hikers. Purakaunui, Canoe Beach. Medium-. Leaders: Lex, Fred, Elaine

Flooded beach access road deterred Hikers from attempting to reach Canoe Beach.
11. 16/4/2008. Hikers. Purakaunui, Canoe Beach. Easy. Park at Picnic Ground. Leaders: Arthur and Barbara.
10. 26/9/2007 Trampers. Purakaunui Circuit. Moderate. Leaders: Shirley, Helen.
8 trampers met at the wharf at Purakaunui and welcomed Peter back into the fold after his long holiday in Australia. The day started out as rather cold and dreary but soon picked up after morning tea in the park at the head of Purakaunui Inlet. We wound our way around the inlet and over the causeway where the kingfishers love to fish. We tramped around the other side of the inlet all the way to Canoe Bay over the steps at the end of Purakaunui beach.
Canoe Beach group. Pat, Peter, Tash, Leoni, Lex

Canoe Beach group. Pat, Peter, Tash, Leoni, Lex

Canoe Beach Trio. Lex, Pat, Abe

Canoe Beach Trio. Lex, Pat, Abe

 Lunch in the sun sitting on the most beautiful beach in the world, before climbing on to the old pa site, Mapoutahi, with views in every direction.
Railway tunnel shot from Mapoutahi Peninsula

Railway tunnel shot from Mapoutahi Peninsula

We admired all the different colours of the flowering currants along the sandy path leading back to the track and talked to a chattering and busy Tui on the way back. The tide had come in since the morning and we kept to the path all the way rather than cutting across the tidal flats. A magic place to spend the day! – Tash
9. 5/4/2006. All. Purakanui, Canoe Beach. Leaders: Doug M, Bob H, Anne R, Eleanor W.
8. 15/9/2004. Both. Purakanui, Canoe Beach. Easy. Leaders: Glenys P, Bev H, Les and Margaret.
7. 6/11/2002. All. Purakanui, Canoe Beach. Medium. Leaders: Doug M, Betty, Colleen.
6. 1/8/2001. Combined. Purekanui – Canoe Beach. Easy. Leaders: Les W, Mary M, Bev H.
5. 3/11/1999. Purakanui – Canoe Beach. Leaders: Doug and Ngaire, Chris.
4. 22/7/1998. Purakanui, Goat Island. Leaders: Doug and Ngaire.
3. 6/8/1997. Purakanui area. Leaders: Doug and Ngaire, Barbara McC.
2. 1/11/1995. Purakanui – Canoe Beach. Easy. Leaders: Doug and Ngaire, Chris, Joan H.
1. 15/11/1989 Purakanui and Doctors Point. Interesting ancient Maori redoubt. Average+. Leaders: Dorothy W, Eric & Dot

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Jul 18 2018

Sandymount – Sandfly Bay Tramps

Published by under Farm,Hikers,Trampers,Year round

No. 24 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “Lovers Leap – The Chasm – Sandfly Bay. N Strang. Farm. Year Round.”
No. 73 on old hardcopy list of 113 club tramps. “Sandymount – Lovers Leap. Year Round”
29 km from car-park.
See Sandymount for area background information.
Sandymount closed for lambing Aug-Oct. Track unformed in places, grassy, slippery when wet. (See also article on pingao planting.)
21. 2018-07-18. Trampers. Sandymount. Leader: Phil.

Eager anticipation of another day ‘just like yesterday’ saw 12 keen trampers travel to the Sandymount carpark, to be greeted by great views to all points of the compass.  People could be seen walking and congregating down below  at the N end of Allans Beach – could it be the Hikers and could they see us?  One of the day’s and life’s enduring questions!

Despite promises of a morning tea at Lovers Leap we ascended the steep track to the Trig and view point, made more challenging by sand; the view point ( and much of the track overall) had been cleared and tidied since the recce.  View shafts abounded including to the Lammerlaws, Silverpeaks, Saddle Hill and the Kakanui and beyond…aah all was well with the world.

Morning tea at Trig. ( Phil pic and caption)

We then retraced our steps back to the carpark and followed the start of the track through the avenue of Macrocarpa

Macrocarpa in stone. (Phil pic and caption.)

and followed the markers down to the lookout over the Chasm which was not unlike ‘staring into the Abyss’.

One was left wondering how and when the volcanic basalt collapsed into the sea to create the formation since formed 10-13 million years ago.

Moving onto Lovers Leap vertigo again made it’s presence felt across the group.

Lovers a leaping. (Phil pic and caption.)

and we pondered another of life’s mysteries such as how could the farmer get his ploughing equipment to the pastures far below?

We then completed the loop track of Sandymount and started our descent down the long sand dune towards Sandfly Bay (made a wildlife refuge in 1908); some ‘young at hearts’ (Guess who?) needed to try sliding on plastic down …

Some wanted to slide down. (Gordon pic and caption.)

… the dunes, but with no success, due to the laws of physics, lack of suitable toboggans but probably more importantly the shape of the protagonists’ backsides that were no good for backsliding! (oh dear)

We approached the beach with some caution due to the strong smells and compressed grasses, and yes we were proved right with 20 sea lions, large and small scattered along the beach.

Three is company. (Phil pic snd caption)

Lunch was taken on a well placed grouping of logs, and then circumventing the wildlife we set off down the beach (where the sand was not flying) finally turning inland and tip-toing across the stream a few times ( with Dave demonstrating how to walk on water) we crossed and ascended farmland to Ridge Road.

On Ridge Road. Phil caption; Gordon pic.)

From here we completed the round trip UP the roads back to the carpark …

Trump’s Toupee hung out to dry? (Phil pic and caption.)

… where it was agreed coffee should be taken at Nicolls; and lo and behold to be greeted there by the large contingent of Hikers – who the barista informed the writer must have been the fast pack! – Phil

20. 15/6/2016. Trampers. Ridge Road. Farmland, Bay, Sand-hills, Sandymount and road return. M. Leader: Jill.
On a pristine winter’s morning 11 eager trampers left from the cars on Ridge Rd and traversed through farmlands to Sandfly Bay. Here we had a later morning tea on the beach listening to a very noisy sea.
We progressed along the beach giving wide berth to 5 sea lions 2 of them were a sandy colour and we wondered if they were the youngsters.

White seal. (Helen pic and caption.)

White seal. (Helen pic and caption.)

Went to a locked up viewing hide before plodding our way through sand-hills, sand-hills and more sand-hills till we finally climbed through coastal scrub emerging at the Sandymount car park. From the car park we had a very panoramic view of the Otago Harbour, Hoopers, and Papanui Inlets that were surrounded with Harbour Cone and Mt Charles with Allans Beach at its base. Lunch

Helen & Judy. (Margreet pic and caption.)

Helen & Judy. (Margreet pic and caption.)

was sheltered at the entrance to the macrocarpa  avenue of trees

Beautiful canopy of trees. (Helen pic and caption.)

Beautiful canopy of trees. (Helen pic and caption.)

which we walked through after lunch to view both Lovers Leap

Lovers Leap platform. (Margreet pic and caption.)

Lovers Leap platform. (Margreet pic and caption.)

Lovers leap. (Helen pic and caption.)

Lovers leap. (Helen pic and caption.)

and the Chasm. Venturing around Sandymount we finally spotted the trig just above us on the track where some wandered  up but the scrub was rather high blocking the view which was better at a lower level. The final stage of our trip was on the Sandymount road back to the cars. We covered 11kms and felt we deserved liquid refreshments at the St Clair salt pool cafe enjoying the last of the winter sun. – Jill.

19. 28/1/2015. Hikers. Lovers Leap, The Chasm. Leaders: George, Alex.
Hikers Sandymount Route

Hikers Sandymount Route – anticlockwise from car-park. But application stopped working at the Chasm. W-h-y??? Bother, bother!!

Thirty-nine of us, yes THIRTY-NINE (did include a number of school children due back at school the following Monday) turned up at the Sandymount car park for what was promised to be a shorter walk with not too much climbing. George and Alex had recceed a round trip clockwise, deciding to lead us in an anti-clockwise direction on the day. So we set off.

New (well, to the writer at least) signs at the first junction indicated that Lovers Leap was via Sandymount Hill,

Signs like this have proliferated around Sandymount now.

Signs like this have proliferated around Sandymount now. (John pic)

the other sign indicated Sandfly Bay. BUT! The writer has never climbed the hill before, as on previous occasions we have always gone on round and past the entrance to the fence-lined Sandfly Bay track, a MUCH less hilly route. Had George forgotten that? I DID query George’s choice of the hill option, but didn’t press the matter.

So it was up, up a track that got quite steep in places. However all made it, even the hiker who had requested assurance of not too much climbing. (He’s not coming out next week, when we do the Leith Saddle track, which except for one wee saddle, is all climb.)

The hill summit rewarded us with the foggy view  we had expected, but it was good to stop here for the morning cuppa.

Cuppa time

Cuppa time (John pic)

Steeply down the other side, sidle further round the hill, soon to arrive at Lovers Leap. (I wonder if they really do, or is it their personal possession. It’s fun omitting the apostrophe [before or after the ‘s’?] to allow for the ambiguity.)

Lovers Leap

Lovers Leap. Some of the 39 plus fog.

We pushed on. Bit of a climb till we reached the open gate giving entrance down through paddock, new style and paddock to the Chasm. Too much of a drop for some to even go near the viewing platform.

Back up onto the track, further around, past the sheep shed and a stop for an early lunch

Lunch. (John pic))

Lunch panorama.. (John pic))

at the beginning of the impressive double macrocarpa-lined avenue.

Then through the avenue, and, for some never here before, the shock of the cars’ sudden appearance at the avenue’s end.

There were some sheltered areas and some areas exposed to the cold wind that never stopped blowing.

Elaine had designated Nichols Cafe again for the last cuppa, and 25 of us adjourned there for coffee and company.

Coffee at Nichols. 25 of us.

Panorama of coffee at Nichols. Some of the 25. Remainder still to arrive.

Thanks to George and Alex for leading a record number of us, (39!!) with nary a one missing or going over the edge. – Ian.

18. 31/7/2013. Trampers. Ridge Road, Lovers Leap, Sandfly Bay.
We were all expecting it to be a bit windy on the coast, but when we got there it was very mild, & dead calm, so off with some clothing was in order. We had all forgotten how far the road walk from Ridge Rd to Sandy Mt. Rd was, but undeterred we pressed on to a morning break at the normal place in the paddock on the LH side of the road.
pack

Packing up after morning tea. (Ken pic and caption)

From there it was a leisurely walk around the Chasm & Lovers Leap viewing platforms, to marvel at the very flat sea conditions. The inlets were like a mirror, it was so calm.
Then off up the climb to the top of the track, where we had lunch at the top of the sandhills, before the easy conditions of the downhill slide onto Sandfly Bay, where we did the obligatory side trip to the viewing hide, only to discover that there are now two hides there, one of which is locked, & is for the tourist operators use only. We did see a sample of the wildlife that inhabits this coastline, one of them didn’t bother with us at all,
Grandad snoozing

Grandad snoozing. (Ken pic and caption)

but the other one was a bit wary of the strange quartet walking past.
Why are you annoying me?

Why are you annoying me? (Ken pic and  caption)

We all enjoyed the walk, although it wasn’t a very long day, as we arrived back at the car around 2:30pm. Distance – 10km, @ 4km/h. – Ken

17. 18/4/2012. Trampers. Ridge Road, Lovers Leap, Sandfly Bay.

GPS of route, courtesy Ken. Cars parked half-way along left of route. Long sand-hill descent clearly depicted.

There were 12 of us. A record in recent memory.

Morning Tea, sheltered from the wind. (Ken pic.)

Lunch spot at the top of the lovely long sand-hill descent. (Ken pic)

16. 7/7/2010. Both. Sandymount, Sandfly Bay return, Lovers Leap, The Chasm. Medium. Leaders: Bruce and Marjorie.

Look at those five animals lined up at a trough. (Joyce caption, Bill pic) 7/7/2010

New signs at Sandfly Bay track turn-off 7/7/2010

Picturesque grove (from south side) 7/7/2010

The Chasm 7/7/2010

15. 13/8/2008 Trampers. Sandymount summit, Lovers Leap, Chasm, Sandfly Bay. Medium. Leaders: Tash, Pat.

Large sandhill. Pat Leonie Ken Tash. 13/8/2008

A wonderful tramp on the peninsula… A small but enthusiastic group of 5 parked our cars at the end of Ridge Road, and then walked back up to the junction, where we turned up towards Sandymount. Near the top we had morning tea in a sheltered spot whose first discovery was attributed to George. At the carpark at the top, the gate to the left said “track closed”, so we took the track to the right instead and made our way back round to Lovers Leap. The views were amazing and as 4 of them stood on the platform, there was much discussion as to who would do the “Leap”. There were no volunteers so we retraced our steps and ended up above Sandfly Bay. Here we had our lunch with beautiful views in all directions. We discussed the fact that lunch stops are a very important part of the tramp and that that spot is often what we remember. And then down, down ,down the wonderful sand hills that looked like scenes from Lawrence of Arabia. Running down like kids… A quick visit to the Penguin hide and then onto the beach where some very large sea lions were lolling about on the sand. Two large ones emerged glistening black from the sea, reminiscent of when the first creatures left the sea to live on the land all those millennia ago. Near the end of the beach we came to a stream where Leonie suggested we sit and take in the great surroundings we were in, with powerful waves in the background crashing onto the beach amidst a surge of foam.

Leonie, Pat, Tash on Log

Leonie, Pat, Tash on Log 13/8/2008

And then after some cunning navigating by Ian we were onto a poled track through a farm, up a small hill and back at the gate, beyond which magically were our cars. I wouldn’t have missed it for the world. – Tash

14. 14/3/2007. Trampers. Sandymount, Lovers Leap, Sandfly Bay. Medium. Leaders: Bruce & Marjorie, Doug M
13. 6/7/2005. Trampers. Sandfly Bay, Lovers Leap, Chasm. Leaders: Bob H, Ian, Frank
12. 6/7/2005. Hikers. Sandymount, Sandfly Bay. Leaders: Joyce, Eleanor.
Grove of trees and ongaonga

Grove of trees and ongaonga

Belted Galloway cattle beast. Who?, George, Hazel

Belted Galloway cattle beast. Who?, George, Hazel

11. 17/3/2004 Trampers: Ridge Road, Sandymount, Sandfly Bay Leader: Ria L
LL

Lovers Leap

VP

L-Leap Platform. Bill, Pat, Ria, George

V

L/Leap Platform. Ria, George, Glenice, Doug M

S

Sandhills at top. Ria, Glenice

10. 17/3/2004 Hikers: Sandfly Bay, Sandymount, Ridge Road. Leaders: Joyce, Eleanor.
9. 20/8/2003. Hikers. Ridge Road to Sandfly Bay. Medium. Leaders: Nancy, Anne R.
8. 27/2/2002. Sandfly Bay – Lovers Leap – Chasm. Leaders: Bob H, Shirley McN, Ria L
7. 29/8/2001. Lovers Leap – Chasm – Sandfly Bay. Medium+. Leaders: Bob H, Ian, Elaine.
6. 29/3/2000. Sandy Mount, Lovers Leap, Lime Kilns. Leaders: Chris, Jean, Ngaire.
5. 25/8/1999. Sandfly Bay. Leaders: Doug and Myrie, Irene.
4. 10/3/1993. New Track – Sandfly Bay. Medium. Leaders: Bev H, Les and Margaret, Ivan and Bev.
3. 16/10/1991. Sandfly Bay. Seals Sand and sun. Average. Leaders: Betty, Wendy, Shirley, Mary McG.
2. 17/7/1991 Lovers’ Leap – The Chasm – Sandfly Bay. Easy. Merle H, Diana B, Nancy, Pam M
1. 27/11/1996. Sandy Mount Road – Lime Kilns – Lovers Leap.Leaders: Chris, Jean, Ria H.
 
 
 

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Jun 20 2018

Macandrew Bay – 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.

14. 20/6/2018. 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 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.

13. 27/7/2016. 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
12. 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

11. 30/1/2008. Trampers. Macandrew Bay, Boulder Beach. Medium. Leaders: Bruce and Marjorie.
10.9/8/2006 Trampers. Macandrew Bay, Boulder Beach. Leaders: Bruce, Glenis
9. 8/6/2005. Trampers. Macandrew Bay – Boulder Beach, return. Leaders: Kerri, Helen S.
g

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

d

Down Paradise. Doug, Tom, Bob

r

World Wide Fund for Nature Conservation Area

b

Returning from Boulder Beach

8. 28/8/2002. Macandrew Bay – Greenacre Street – Boulder Beach. Medium+. Leaders: Ian, Irene, Elaine.
7. 15/8/2001 Macandrew Bay Greenacre Street Paradise Track, Boulder Beach. Medium. Leaders Doug M, Mary L, Evelyn C
6. 19/7/2000 Macandrew Bay Greenacre Street Paradise Track, Boulder Beach. Leaders Jean A, Chris, Joan H
5. 1/12/1999. Macandrew Bay, Larnach Castle, Boulder Beach. Leaders: Molly, Bill H, Pat.
4. 6/5/1998. Macandrew Bay, Greenacres, Boulder Beach, Paradise Road. Leaders: Doug J, Betty, Ted.
3. 21/5/1997. Macandrew Bay Greenacres Street, Boulder Beach return. Leaders: Chris H, Ria H, Jean
2. 6/3/1996. Macandrew Bay – Greenacres Street – Boulder Beach. Medium. Leaders: Dot and Eric, Chris, Joan H.
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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May 30 2018

Orbells Crossing, Northern Lawsons Farm

Published by under Trampers

68 km from car-park.

Topo map of area

9. 30/5/2018. Orbells Crossing – Mountain Road.(Lawsons Farm.)  M-H. Arthur.

Map of route, courtesy Art.

Frost to begin with, but a sunny day followed for 11 Trampers to enjoy their exercise in.

We drove up Mountain Road from the north end and parked up.

The air was cold, but a brisk downhill walk in the sunshine took us to the bank of the Waikouaiti River where we had our smoko stop.

All important smoko. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Following the river bank upstream we soon encountered a pine plantation where the track was becoming overgrown with blackberry and gorse. You would have expected that a consciention leader would have done some track clearing!

This was the only bad patch for the day, as we were were out on grazed paddocks from then on.

Passing the junction of the two branches of the Waikouaiti River, we continued up the south branch and soon came out on a lovely river flat. On leaving the river we had a long climb, with a reasonable gradient,

Onwards and upwards. (Phil pic and caption.)

to eventually find our lunch spot on the ridge top.

Lunch among the tussocks. (Gordon pic and caption.)

Lunch with a view – a little snow was on top of Lamb Hill, Mount Misery, (Bendoran Huts had been visible a few metres back). We were looking at Mount Watkins

Reflecting on Mt Watkins (Phil pic and caption.)

as we ate, and Maori Peak, Karitane, etc, further round.

A very slight south-east, but very chilly breeze was present, and we faced into it for the return journey. Following the ridge down, and then on a slippery (newly graded) track requiring care.

Heading back to cars. (Gordon pic and caption.)

In time we came to Mountain Road, which is the old wagon road from the early days of Otago, and eventually arrived back at our cars.

We had covered a distance of about 10.5 km. Our club had last tramped here in 2012, but none of our group had been here before.

A new tramp is always welcomed, and we had a great day in the sunshine, enjoyed by all.

Blueskin Nurseries enjoyed our patronage on the way home. The Hikers arrived in too. – Art.

8. 18/1/2012. Trampers. Orbells Crossing, Mountain Road Track. Medium.

 

Ken's GPS tracking of tramp

Ken’s GPS tracking of tramp

Three of us, & Fin the dog went on the tramp to Lawson’s Farm at the North end of the Silverpeaks, in the Waikouaiti River valley.

Morning Tea break. (Ken pic and caption)

It was a very warm day, so we took advantage of the shade where we could. As I was the only one who had been there before, I put the previous tramp from there onto my GPS, & we followed that route up to where we had previously had lunch, but as it was only 11:00am at this time, we just rested in the shade for 10 mins or so, …

Resting out of the hot sun. (Ken pic and caption)

View  from our resting place. (Ken pic and caption)

… before climbing the steep face up to the top paddock. Our lunch stop was by the Limestone rock formation, but this time, we sat down by the fence below them to keep out of the sun.

Lunch in the shade of the trees. (Ken pic and caption)

The after lunch climb up the vehicle track to the Old Mountain Track was next, & then just a leisurely walk along this back to the vehicle. – Ken.
7. 21/7/2010. Trampers. Orbells Crossing, Mountain Road Track. Medium. Leaders: Ria, Hazel.
Ken’s GPS tracking of the tramp goes anti-clockwise from top right where we parked the cars, across left alongside two large water tanks and a new building, then a zig-zag down to the river where we stopped for morning tea. Here we were amazed by evidence of a large flood that had tangled debris in bare willow-branches (not evident in the pic) well above our heads.

Morning Tea. (Keith pic)

Following Ken’s GPS tracking up the true right side of the river, and you come to the extreme left of the map where a mixture of tracking signals indicates our lunch-stop. As you can determine -click to enlarge the pic – from whether the tracking signals are behind or in front of each other, you will see that the track took us up and down several slopes. Lunch was on a ledge well above the river. A great view. The steep ridge showing in the pic’s background is what we c-l-i-m-b-e-d after lunch.

Lunch on ledge above Waikouaiti River. (Keith pic)

View looking back down the willow-lined river. (Keith pic)

A gentle descent across a newly-grassed field took us to a track down to a gully between two ridges, then up the gully to the remarkable set of unusual rocks. Beyond these, we climbed the steep slope up to the left to emerge eventually on the Mountain Road track. It was then only the case of following this back down to the the cars. Thanks to Ria and Hazel for a well-led tramp, enjoyed on a grand winter’s sunny day following a good frost. – Ian
6. 27/2/2008. Trampers. Orbells Crossing, south. Medium. Leaders: Ria L, Hazel
Rocks pose. Doug M, Hazel, Leonie, Ria, Sabina, Ken, Tash, Who?

Rocks pose. Doug M, Hazel, Leonie, Ria, Sabina, Ken, Tash, Who?

A small but select group met at the turning to Buckland’s crossing on an overcast but warm day under the leadership of Ria and Hazel. The location of the tramp was down as Orbells crossing but there was some debate as to where this actually was. We parked in the middle of nowhere but Ria and Hazel soon had us over a couple of fences and striking across the countryside to a nice morning tea stop on the banks of the South branch of the Waikouaiti River where it was mentioned that a fishing rod would have been useful. The tramp continued along a very pleasant country track wending our way along hillsides and gullies until we stopped for lunch, looking back over to where we had walked earlier. To those with no sense of direction this was quite confusing as we seemed to do a very big figure of eight. After lunch the mystery trip continued, with Ria venturing into some uncharted territory along a gully. When the gully ran out it was a steep climb up to the top where we could easily see where we were again. One of the highlights of the day was seeing the unusual rocks just above the track,

Ria, Hazel

Ria, Hazel

Ria, Ian, Tash

Ria, Ian, Tash

weathered into all sorts of interesting shapes, colour and textures. All information about these rocks would be gratefully received. A very enjoyable day’s tramping. Many thanks to our adventurous leaders. – Tash

5. 9/5/2007. Lawson Farm from McGrath/Gilchrist Roads near Old Cherry Farm. Figure of Eight. No river. Leaders: George, Evelyn C.
4. 10/5/2006. Trampers. Orbells Crossing. Medium. Leaders: Ria, hazel.
3. 9/5/2001. Orbells Crossing. Medium. Leaders: Riaa L, Mary L, Ian.
2. 10/11/1993. Orbells Crossing. Round trip. Medium. Leaders: Mary Y, Peg C, Evelyn M, Wendy.
1. 17/4/1991 Cherry Farm, Merton. Ridge inland from Mt track.Leaders: G Haggie, B Harvey, R Heenan

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May 09 2018

McKendry Road, Roseburn, Woolshed Road, Horsehoof Station.

Published by under Trampers

Location: 20 km.
12. 9/5/2018. Trampers. McKendry Road to Maungatuas tramp. Leader: Jill.

On a glorious May morning 13 trampers parked in Horsehoof Station’s paddock at the top of McKendry Road – and immediately began our ascent of “the Hill”.

Start. (Gordon pic.)

Gaining height quickly we were afforded great views over the Taieri.

Smoko break next. (Gordon pic.)

Morning tea was a welcome break from the climb – and time to take in the vista to Saddle Hill and the sea beyond.

Our climb continued before we turned  left on to a track that took us down through a lovely beech filled gully and over a pretty stream.

Native bush. (Gordon pic.)

(Don’t think we need to include the photo of Margreet & the gorse bush!)

Then it was onward and upward and upward through native tussock country.

Long slog to lunch stop. (Gordon pic.)

We had lunch at the top corner of Horsehoof – on the  boundary with the Maungatua conservation area.

Finally, LUNCH Break. (Gordon pic.)

We headed  back down along farm tracks,

All downhill from Woolshed Road back to the cars. (Clive pic.)

making a round trip of just over 16 km. – Jill.

11. 15/2/2012. Trampers. McKendry Road, Woolshed Road, Maungatua.

GPS record of route (Courtesy Ken). Squiggly bit is recces in Roseburn from this and the prior tramp. Its tail at the top is the previous recce.

Interesting macrocarpa near Roseburn entrance


10. 28/7/2010. Trampers. McKendry Road, Roseburn, Woolshed Road. Medium.
 Leaders: Doug, Sabina.
We parked the cars under some Gum trees, & walked the short distance to the start of the climb up the “Old Coach Rd” to the top of the Maungatuas.

Climbing ‘The Old Coach Rd’. (Ken pic and caption)

This track was very hard going due to the damage done to it by cattle.

Muddy condition of ‘Old Coach Road’. (Ken pic and caption)

We stopped for morning tea part way up, then continued on for some distance, until deciding to go back down, as it was getting quite windy, & cold, with frequent light showers. We went back down to the Roseburn house, found a spot to have lunch,

Lunch. (Ken pic and caption)

View from lunch spot. (Ken pic and caption)

View from lunch spot (2). (Ken pic and caption)

View from lunch spot by house. (Ken pic and caption)

& then went exploring, to find a better way to the top. After exploring a number of tracks, & even although the farmer had told Doug & Sabina that there was no way up now because of overgrown tracks, we found a way up through an old logging site which would take us right to the top.

Close-up of correct track. (Ken pic and caption)

Correct track to top. (Ken pic and caption)

From there, it was back to the cars, & home again. – Ken.
9. 21/11/2007. Trampers. McKendry Road, Roseburn, Woolshed Road return. Medium. Leaders: George, Glenice

A hot day with some early steep climbing, but not before George and Glenis led 10 of us down through Roseburn farm homestead to see a dozen or so alpacas. Great.

Alpacas on Roseburn

Alpacas on Roseburn

Alpacas up close

Alpacas up close

Climbing out, we stopped for morning tea with a grand view from the shelter of pines

Cuppa time. Wendy, Ria, Hazel.

Cuppa time. Wendy, Ria, Hazel.

before emerging into paddocks exposed to a hot sun. It was then just continual climbing until we emerged at last onto Woolshed Road, a 4WD track along the top joining McKendry Road along the back with Horsehoof Station. It was still a bit early for lunch, so George led us down a 4WD track turn-off that headed towards Maungatua, to lunch under silver beech trees hugging a Woodside-bound stream. The trees provided a leisurely lunch- time shelter and rest.

Lunch

Lunch. George, Lex, Pat, Wendy.

Lunch snooze. Bill.

Lunch snooze. Bill.

Climbing back out, we followed the Woolshed- McKendry road down, down, down, enjoying great views of Outram and the Taieri Plain on the way, to reach the cars again near Roseburn Farm. An enjoyable first real sunny day in a long time. – Ian

8. 28/6/2006. Trampers. Horsehoof to Maungauas from McKendry Road. Medium+.
7. 18/6/2003. Trampers. McKendry Road to Maungatuas, returning by farm. Medium. Leaders Shirley McN, Bill and Pat.
6. 27/6/2001. Horsehoof Station from McKendry Road. Medium+. Leaders: Claude, Bill and Pat.
5. 19/4/2000. McKendry Road, Horsehoof Station. Leaders: Graham, Bill H, Molly.
4. 10/2/1999. Horsehoof Station via McKendry Road. Leaders: Graham, Shirley McN, Wendy
3. 23/4/1997. McKendry Road via Horsehoof Station. Leaders: Les and Margaret, George.
2. 23/8/1995 McKendry Road, Maungatua, return by Roseburn property, Horsehoof Station. Medium. Leaders: Les W, Ray, Jack M, Peter R
1. 26/8/1992 McKendry Road to Maungatuas, return by Roseburn property, Horsehoof Station. Leaders: George, Les W, Peg Al, Peggy M..

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May 09 2018

Portobello, Clarks, Sheppards, McArthny, Varleys Hills

Published by under Trampers

Distance Portobello from car-park: 32 km.

Map of area

10. 9/5/2018. Hikers. Varleys Hill. M. Leaders: Pam and Jay.

Route map, courtesy Ian.

Adrienne W pic.

Lunching on top of Varleys hill. (Ian pic.)

9. 10/1/2018. Trampers. Varleys Hill. M. Leader: Janine.

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

Morning Tea. (Helen pic and caption.)

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

Towards Papanui Inlet. (Helen pic and caption.)

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

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

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

Pretty Ragwort. (Helen pic and caption.)

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

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

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

Route map, courtesy Ian.

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

Varleys Hill driveway. (Clive pic and caption.)

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

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

… and enjoyed  magnificent views of sea and hills.

Adrienne pic.

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

Finding the path. (Clive pic and caption.)

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

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

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

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

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

Scene of Portobello from Clarks Hill (Helen pic)

Scene of Portobello from Sheppards Hill (Helen pic)

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

Varleys Hill Information Sheet, Page 1

Varleys Hill Information Sheet, Page 1

Varleys Hill Information Sheet, page 2

Varleys Hill Information Sheet, page 2

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

Lunch on Varleys (Helen pic)

Lunch on Varleys (Helen pic)

Hoopers Inlet from Varleys Hill (Helen pic)

Hoopers Inlet from Varleys Hill (Helen pic)

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

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

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

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

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

Lunch on Varleys Hill (Ken pic)

Lunch on Varleys Hill (Ken pic)

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

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

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

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

Mount Charles from Weir Road

A break on way

Returning from viewing plaque

Closer look at the letter boxes

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

Looking out over Quarantine Point from Clarks Hill

Descent from Varleys Hill ending at Hoopers Inlet Hall

New plaque at Sheppards Road corner

Track sign of route over saddle to Portebello

Still going? Shed in Hereweka Street.

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

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

Tea Break. Lex, Sabina, Ria, George

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

Gate. Sabina, George, Ria, Lex

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

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

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

Papanui Inlet and Sandymount from Varley’s Hill

Stone wall

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

A pleasant descent on the other side of the hill
Cone

Harbour Cone & reflection coming down from Varley Hill

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

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

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

Scene en route

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

Plaited Ngaio trunk

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

Harbour Cone from Varley Hill

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

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

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

A cheeky grin (?) from a tagged seal.

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

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

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

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May 02 2018

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.

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

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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