Wilderness May 2021

Each issue of Wilderness takes its readers to the most beautiful areas in New Zealand, whether by foot, mountain bike, sea kayak, raft, pony or dream.

New Zealand
Lifestyle Publishing Ltd
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12 期号


plus-sized trampers

IT SEEMS AMAZING that five months into 2021, we’re only just beginning to see outdoor gear manufacturers tentatively begin making clothing for larger hikers. I get that the logistics involved in making an expanded size range is tricky and I am sympathetic to that challenge. But, with as many as 26 per cent of adults in this country classified as clinically obese and 30 per cent considered overweight – only the United States, where many outdoor brands are based, has higher figures among English-speaking countries – it seems this is an opportunity going begging. As we discover in our feature ‘Go big or go home’ (p46), for some larger trampers it’s a mission impossible to find clothing that fits them properly. There are many reasons why this is unacceptable. Gear manufacturers like…

pigeon post

SOLO TRAMPING HIGH Returning on a real high from my first ever solo overnight tramp in the Tararua Ranges, I was really interested to read ‘Alone on Te Araroa’ (April 2021). A lot of what the author, Emma Connell, wrote resonated with me, even after only doing a mere one nighter. Having always previously tramped with family, friends or on tramping club trips, I had not considered solo tramping as an option. A friend gave me the idea and now I understand the feeling of pure freedom, independence and self-responsibility that comes with being alone in the wilderness. Being by yourself in the bush or on a ridge top looking out to distant mountains gives you the opportunity to be in the moment, to fully absorb and appreciate the beauty of our wilderness…

great hard loo to find views

Reading Peter Laurenson’s article ‘Tararua tops feast’ (March 2021), one sentence triggered a reaction in me: ‘The nearby loo has an even better view.’ Fantastic views from loos have vanished as DOC seems to have decreed to its contractors that ‘all loo doors must now face away from the view and if possible also face the hut’. This does not help the tramper perspiring, and/or expiring, in a fibreglass coffin (FC) on a sunny day and who has to prop the door open to survive the smell and heat. In my favourite tramping area – the Travers Valley in Nelson Lakes National Park – there has been a mass extinction of loo views. Here’s an unofficial list: 1. Bushline Hut: I used to tell everyone going there, ‘Check out the loo view over…

your trips, your pix

Get your photo published here to receive a $30 Silva Pocket Thermo Compass for accurate wayfinding and temperature-sussing. Learn more about Silva at e.ampro.co.nz. Last Weekend submission criteria can be found at wildernessmag.co.nz…

book online with backcountry passes

BACKCOUNTRY HUT passes can now be used to book huts online after DOC upgraded its booking system, but there’s a catch: the passes cannot be used at all bookable huts. Federated Mountain Clubs (FMC) has been pushing for hut passes to be included in DOC’s online booking system for years and has criticised the expansion of bookable huts for devaluing hut passes. Backcountry Hut Passes enable users to stay an unlimited number of nights at DOC huts and are valid for six months and 12 months for $92 and $122 respectively. The department updated its online booking system last year, adding selected campsites to the booking system, and some bookable huts can now be paid for using a hut pass. Users need to register their hut pass on their DOC booking account. However, the…

new $3.4m hut opening on milford track

A NEW $3.4M HUT on the Milford Track is set to open in mid-April, replacing the 30-year-old Mintaro Hut which is closing due to earthquake risk. The 40-bunk hut is the second hut trampers encounter on the track, just before McKinnon Pass. DOC’s Southern South Island operations director Aaron Fleming said the new hut is about 2km from the existing hut and walkers would begin using it in the final weeks of this year’s Great Walk season with an official opening planned for next season. Fleming said the old hut was being replaced as it was in a potential rockfall zone and there was an estimated 15 to 20 per cent chance of an earthquake triggering a major rockfall in the area in the next 15 years. The new hut cost nearly double the…