The DOC website gives the alpine route a difficulty of Advanced/Expert, however with the large number of steel orange poles out there it is questionable if it is still a route?
The whisky for this trip was a Bowmore 10 year old finished in Oloroso sherry and wine casks.
|Duty Free Bowmore 10yo|
Duangdao dropped me off at the Hacket Creek car park and I walked off to visit two huts, Hacket hut and Browning hut, before continuing to Starveall Hut for the night.
|Nice beer for end of tramping day|
Out of bed and away by seven with clear skies and great views for the walk to Slaty hut.
|Views from Starveall and along the tops perfect.|
|Forested ridge to Slaty|
|Looking at my destination|
|Clouds in the distance|
|Almost at Slaty|
|Cloud coming as heading to Old Man|
|Rolling in with views gone.|
|Clag from now on, just minor views|
|Tree area with gentle path|
|Top of what?|
|Another wee bump|
|Old Man Hut|
|The goat paddock|
|Top of ?|
|Skirting the the good bits|
|A big view|
|Nice flat top of Rintoul and f#[k the orange pole|
|Mt Rintoul Hut|
|Forest on way to Purple Top|
|Some of that low silica rock|
|The Tarn with no name on BR26|
Not long after leaving the hut got my first wasp sting, this gorge is very interesting. There is a bit of up and down and the track is narrow and high above the river and at times crossing the river. With heavy rain this gorge section would be very difficult.
|Mid Wairoa Hut|
|Looking back into the first good gorge|
|Finally an interesting fungi|
|Gentle flat river area|
|Soft under foot|
|Into the mineral belt|
|Top Wairoa Hut|
|Cloths dryer in the hills|
|Heading away from the smokey hut|
|Wandering up to the saddle|
|Looks like glaciation?|
|Looking back down valley at Top Wairoa Hut|
|The orange poles I so do not love|
|Hunters Hut in the distance|
|The orange poles....|
|Down valley to Hunters Hut|
|View back down the valley|
Up early to get out and meet Anthony at two p.m. at car park on SW6, expected it to be a long journey as read the Te Araroa notes.
|Porters Creek Hut (was xxxx)|
|From Red Hill Hut looking back|
|Road down from Red Hills Hut|
|View out to Wairoa Valley|
The Te Araroa Trail
I do not like what the Te Araroa Trail has done to some of New Zealand's back country tracks, especially with the poles on the Mt Richmond alpine route; its more like "paint by numbers" tramping. The following points are what this walk way has caused to occur from my perspective:
- heavier trail traffic and the fragile areas are getting damaged
- hut capacity breached
- long drops that are near full
- poles plastered across traditional routes
- less solitude
- Do you have a compass?
- If you have a compass is it designed to work in the southern hemisphere?
- Do you have an NZTopo50 map or equivalent?
- Do you have a GPS?
- Do you know how to establish your location?
The Te Araroa trail is sustainable, wonder what that means for the traditional Forest Service huts and there future?
While researching the proposed future management of our back country I had a read of DOC's Destination Management Framework. In the opening sentence there is a very worrying phrase "how the place is marketed". The framework is all about increasing number into the back country and other DOC managed "assets".
The Te Araroa trail should have been a whole new track, not something that used existing infrastructure.
1706 Left Hacket car park
1811 Hacket Hut
1817 Side trip to Browning Hut (jogging no pack)
1858 Browning hut
1929 Hacket Hut
1941 Left Hacket Hut
2226 Starveall Hut
0655 Left Starveall Hut
0835 Slaty Hut
0924 Left Slaty Hut
1202 Old Man Hut
1310 Left Old Man Hut
1622 Rintoul Hut
1741 Left Rintoul hut
2014 Tarn hut
2016 Left Tarn Hut
2240 Mid Wairoa Hut
0809 Left Mid Wairoa Hut
1112 Top Wairoa Hut
1412 Left Top Wairoa Hut
1817 Hunters Hut
0608 Left Hunters Hut
0813 Porters Creek Hut
0847 Left Porters Creek Hut
1155 Red Hills Hut
1210 Left Red Hills Hut
1327 Car park on SH63
Some forgetful person from an Auckland tramping club accidentally left a book at Hunters Hut, which ended up at Porters Creek Hut; not to worry I will mail it back to them.
Alpine Route Mt Richmond Forest Park
Why wont my compass work on the other side of the equator?
You can find the Te Araroa strategy here
DOC's Destination Management Framework
Slowly fixing up this blog entry as I don't yet have all the flower names and have a few photos to add and others to correct.