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2006-04-20 Leatham Saxton Acheron Waihopai

Marlborough back country

Thursday - Wellington to Leatham

Flew Sounds Air from Wellington to Koromiko. Picked up courtesy of a colleague of Brians and driven, via F&C in Blenheim, up the Leatham River in the dark, visiting Boulder Stream twice!, to a hut which we shared with a couple of very hospitable hunters. Fantastic night sky, calm, clear, no moon, no lights, just meteorites and stars galore.

Friday - to top Gordons.

Frost overnight. Walked up the Leatham along the road to next hut and the end of road, sorting out a number of lesser sized pines and firs close to the road.

500th hut
500th hut
The track started with a swing bridge over the Leatham, the only one of the trip, and the good track ascended gently upriver flats and terraces, with occasional excursions onto the less untracked river bed, the odd pine being plucked in passing. The warmth of the sun meant were were feeling quite dry by lunch which we enjoyed just before the track rose into the bush. The pines on the river flat took a beating with a couple having to be cut from the ground (handy things those swiss army knives).

Heading up Gordon Stream
Heading up Gordon Stream

We arrived at the hut early. It is situated in an excellent position above the gorged river between two branches of the stream, the true right curving round to the north, the true left heading up to the east and Saxton saddle.

Saturday - to the Waihopai

Saxton Saddle - Saxton - Port Cooper Saddle - Acheron Acheron Saddle - Canterbury Spur - Waihopai.

Sunday

Waipopai valley - Glazebrook to Stronvar. Flew Blenheim Airport to Wellington, the weather being such that Sounds Air could not fly out of Koromiko. This was most fortunate because it saved us enough time that we made the plane despite missing our transport due to a misunderstanding about public vehicle access into the head of the Waiphoai. There is a locked gate at Stronvar for which permission can be obtained from Stronvar Station.

On Canterbury Spur looking into the Waihopai
On Canterbury Spur looking into the Waihopai

Maps

  • NZMS 1 Saxton S34 for a bit of history - the entire trip on one sheet

References



Alan's photos

agP1010109.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1607k (2006 Apr 20 22:10)
agP1010110.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1702k (2006 Apr 20 22:11)
agP1010112.jpeg: 1728x2304, 1076k (2006 Apr 20 23:37)
agP1010114.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1071k (2006 Apr 21 00:57)
agP1010115.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1065k (2006 Apr 21 00:58)
agP1010118.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1115k (2006 Apr 21 04:03)
agP1010119.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1593k (2006 Apr 21 05:21)
agP1010120.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1524k (2006 Apr 21 05:54)
agP1010121.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1052k (2006 Apr 21 22:53)
agP1010122.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1739k (2006 Apr 21 23:39)
agP1010123.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1085k (2006 Apr 21 23:40)
agP1010126.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1126k (2006 Apr 21 23:51)
agP1010127.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1060k (2006 Apr 22 02:11)
agP1010130.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1079k (2006 Apr 22 05:41)
agP1010131.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1392k (2006 Apr 22 08:18)
agP1010132.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1170k (2006 Apr 22 23:54)
agP1010133.jpeg: 2304x1728, 1099k (2006 Apr 23 02:05)



Simon's photos

sed01A_0072.jpeg: 1536x1024, 495k (2006 Jun 07 00:12)
sed02A_0071.jpeg: 1536x1024, 556k (2006 Jun 07 00:12)
sed03A_0070.jpeg: 1536x1024, 532k (2006 Jun 07 00:12)
sed04A_0069.jpeg: 1536x1024, 529k (2006 Jun 07 00:12)
sed05A_0068.jpeg: 1024x1536, 585k (2006 Jun 07 00:25)
sed06A_0067.jpeg: 1536x1024, 506k (2006 Jun 07 00:12)
sed07A_0066.jpeg: 1536x1024, 469k (2006 Jun 07 00:11)
sed08A_0065.jpeg: 1024x1536, 753k (2006 Jun 07 00:25)
sed09A_0064.jpeg: 1536x1024, 579k (2006 Jun 07 00:11)
sed10A_0063.jpeg: 1024x1536, 604k (2006 Jun 07 00:25)
sed11A_0062.jpeg: 1536x1024, 393k (2006 Jun 07 00:11)

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