The Gates of Hell
Mt Hecla,1734m,is accessed from the Double Hill Run Road in the Rakaia River,& takes 3.5 hours to walk into Tribulation Hut.A good summertime base as it doesn`t boast a fire.From here it`s 3 hours up to Hecla or a bit more if you`re heading up to the high point of the Black Hill Range. If you take 3 steps east from the summit of Hecla,you`ll have air under your feet,with a rather impressive drop-off;not vertical,but near as dammit!Grand views of the Pacific Ocean,Mt Hutt,Mt Bruce,the Old Man Range . Icelands` namesake mountain was known to the Ancients as `the Gates of Hell` but our version has no such reputation. One of our party found a friendly scree just under Tribulation Hill,1601m,which dropped us nicely to within 300m of the valley floor & the hut.
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