Newsletter, July 2010


Welcome to new members: Ola Nordland & Kristi du Bois

Download the printed version of the newsletter (6 pages, more photos) as a 0.5-megabyte PDF file. (You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader or similar program installed on your computer. Broadband connection preferable.)


I’ve been trudging through a plethora of good armchair adventures this year. Halfway through Aat Vervoorn’s Mountain Solitudes, I came across this piece:

“Going into the mountains alone gives great flexibility with regard to weather and conditions; you can pick your time and go when circumstances are favourable. You have the ability to revise your plans as you go. When you are alone, social pressures and expectations fade...”

While this is true, I’ve been reflecting on my recent adventures in the hills. It’s intriguing that the tramps I’ve enjoyed the most are club trips, not solo epics.

Perhaps, because I’m living by myself at this present moment, the contact with other people becomes more meaningful. Or, maybe we’re all hard-wired for fellowship, communication and the like. Part of our DNA as humans. While many of us are rugged individualists, we still need each other, if not just for company, safety and the sharing of knowledge (at the very least.)

I’ve particularly enjoyed getting to know the Glover family, who live in Hope. Good sorts they are, so I hope you enjoy their ‘family profile’.

You might notice this newsletter is a wee bit shorter. This is because half of the trips were cancelled, due to unprecedented rainfall. Winter came early, and with a vengeance. It’s cold, it’s wet, it’s dark, it’s time to get OUT THERE! (together, of course.)
Raymond Salisbury > EDITOR


1. Places of birth: All born in Nelson.
2. Jobs:  Mike is a self-employed engineer working in the horticultural industry, building fruit sizing machinery. Deirdre home-schools Wade, Alice & Chelsea.
3. Been members for: Members of Waimea tramping club for 25 years. NTC members for 5 years.
4. How we’ve benefited: By having other friends to go tramping with and getting ideas off other members about different places to go.
5. Our best trip: Mid-winter trip through the Leslie Karamea before they took the old huts out.  
6. Our worst trip: The Kepler, due to walking in 100km winds & knee deep snow drifts on New Year’s Day.
7. Our funniest moment: On the Hollyford Track, watching Wade & Dion running down the beach with heavy packs on, followed closely by angry seals on our way from Big Bay to Martins Bay.
8. Our scariest moment: When Wade, Alice, Chelsea and a friend went for their first overnight tramp alone. They spent a very stormy night in Salisbury Hut by themselves. They decided to frequent the toilet together, due to the strange noises outside.
9. Our favourite tramping hut: First runner up was Liverpool Bivvy, but Pizza Hut got the most votes.
10. What wild place would we put at the top of our ‘bucket list?’ John Reid Hut then across the Mt Arthur Range to the Twins and Ellis Basin. It would be a great trip, and we would take no first aid & no safety gear because we’d be going to die anyway. This would mean a super light pack.

FMC NEWSLETTERS > Federated Mountain Clubs

Phil Glasson, the FMC Secretary, wants you all to check out his monthly newsletter, which is quite different to Shaun Barnett's more formalised 'Bulletin', (the one we post out to you.)

Read it directly on-line

Read as a PDF File

2010 CLUB NITES > Put them on your calendar.

7:30pm Nelson Intermediate School, Tipahi Street. Gold Coin.

Monday 2 August
AGM & Guest speaker: Craig Potton

Monday 4 October
Mark Stevens - Mt Belvedere climb

Monday 6 December
Club Photo Competition


The club owns 4 of the latest 406 MHz PLBs which include GPS for more rapid and precise location by SAR after activation. (This means you get rescued quicker!)

We are very fortunate that Gillian and Hec Arbuthnott, through their BaseCamp shop, have been prepared to manage the distribution and maintenance of these beacons for the benefit of club members and other outdoor types.

We require ALL club trips to take a PLB and strongly recommend that private trips also carry one. Over the summer months there have been periods of high demand for the PLBs and some irritants have crept in, especially for BaseCamp.

The following rules spell out some basic courtesies that we expect all users of the club’s beacons to follow:

  • Club trips have priority. A PLB will be held by BaseCamp for each scheduled trip.
  • Beacons for private trips, whether club members or otherwise, are on a first-come basis – you can ask BaseCamp to make a booking.
  • BaseCamp endeavours to assist but cannot guarantee a beacon will be available.
  • Beacons must be returned the first business day after finishing a trip.
  • If a trip, whether club or private, is cancelled or dates changed, BaseCamp needs to be told immediately so the beacon can be reallocated. Phone: 548 1710.
  • Report damage or activation of the beacon to BaseCamp upon return. A no blame policy operates – we just need to know, otherwise a defective beacon may go out, which raises risks.
  • BaseCamp maintains a list of local renters of PLBs, if no club PLBs are available.

Commonsense courtesies and communications will enable the club and BaseCamp to efficiently run this operation which is a key element to trip safety.


The Club is missing many back numbers of New Zealand Wilderness Magazine. This magazine is a good source of information. Others may want to borrow them, too. Therefore, please return them now to David Blunt, 11 Bisley Ave, Nelson, who will keep them for 2 years. After that they go to Wises Picture Framing,  by Buxton Carpark. You may still hand them in at Basecamp.

DOC UPDATES > Tracks & Huts

Nelson Lakes National Park: new Angelus Hut

Bookings now open. New hut tickets will be required after 15 November.
$20 per adult/night. Wood burner and tank water. Warden during summer season. During winter, backcountry hut tickets can be used.

See last article in Trip Reports regarding the facilities at the new hut..

Mt Brown Hut > Hokitika area:
An old hut that has been dismantled is being re-assembled on the mountains overlooking Lake Kaniere, inland from Hokitika. Undertaken by the Kokatahi Tramping Group with support from DOC.

The project will see a tidy 4-bunk located in a superb position on Mt Brown, with stunning coastal views. No hut fees required. The old Lower Arahura Hut (recently replaced) will be moved to a tussock bench on Mt Brown. The old Mt Brown Hut, in a separate location, was removed back in December 2006.

Mt Curtis Hut > Brunner Range:
Depending on community support, DoC may rebuild an old hunting hut on the Brunner Range. Contact Jonathon Edmondson, DoC Greymouth. (03) 768 0428.


Contact: Evelyn O’Neill.
Mail: 23 Coleridge Place, Stoke.
Telephone: (03) 547 2426

14 August 2010 > Cost $75
Outdoor First Aid > Revalidation course
Venue: Paretai Lodge, Brightwater.

The course is skill-based, ‘hands on’, involving scenarios and practicals, aimed at updating the holder of a current OFA certificate with the recent changes in protocol and to refresh their skills.
Skill erosion is a recognised factor that develops if a first aider is not exposed to actual first aid incidents. All participants must have an OFA certificate which is dated no less than two years previous.

11–12 September > Cost $110
Outdoor First Aid > Full course
Venue: Paretai Lodge, Brightwater.

The Outdoor First Aid course is designed to equip outdoor users with the skills and knowledge necessary to manage accidents and sudden illnesses in the outdoor environment for a minimum of 24 hours.
You will complete a minimum of six hours practical work in the outdoors treating, in a group, people injured in mock accidents.
See above for contact details.

18–19 Sept 2010 > Cost $50
Bushcraft > Intermediate

This course is more field-oriented than the introductory course, with most of the time spent outdoors. To ensure that everything is covered, some refresher sessions on important basic skills & knowledge will be needed.
A planned weekend overnight trip is included.

Participants must:

  • Be fit enough to travel for 6+ hours across bush terrain, on and off track, with a full pack.
  • Be 18 years of age (or 14 if their attendance is agreed to by a guardian).
  • Should have attended Risk Management & a First Aid course, and have basic Bushcraft skills.

Learning outcomes:

  • Navigate on-track and off-track using only a map and location awareness.
  • Navigate with/without compass.
  • Safely travel off-track in non-challenging bush terrain.
  • Rotate the responsibility of the party leader role.
  • Select a suitable campsite.
  • Use a mountain radio.
  • Operate in an environmentally responsible manner.
  • Build an emergency shelter with material and sleep in it.

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