I too enjoy a bit of wine in a hut, but can go without. I don't however agree that a total ban would be appropriate. And don;t feel it would be enforceable.
@waynowski - I wouldn't say alcohol is the root of the problem. For me the root is the mentality that it is appropriate/needed to bring large quantities of high alcohol to a hut.
Awareness of, and sensitivity towards, others is the crux of the matter. Any of a number of things can be a problem if done badly - music, radio, alcohol, shouting, laughing, late arrivals, early starts, smelly food, etc.... You can't (and shouldn't) ban them all. Abuse of all of the above is fundamentally thoughtless.
My faith in humanity and the ability for people to improve says the solution lies in building folk up. Helping those who are not able to see things from other peoples perspective to think a little further. Not just in a hut - but in general. And then the problem slowly gets managed.
As a generalisation I find Kiwis relatively aware of others, and relatively thoughtful. There will always be exceptions, but you lot are a lot nicer then the average....[insert negative stereotype here].
the root of the problem IS alcohol, because of the mentality of people when they are drunk.... they are far more likely to be irrational, unsociable, beligerant obnoxious, loud, violent, you name it, have you actually been in a hut where drunks get out of control? the problem is you dont know the and you have no clue how bad its going to get and there have been various incidents where it does get scary especially for young ones, huts have to be family friendly. at the time you are just sitting there wondering how much worse is this going to become and whether you should cut your losses and leave the hut or whether you should hope you will get enough sleep so you're functional to tramp the next day. have you had to tramp because you didnt get to sleep because of a hut full of drunks and had a long days tramp the next day? remember some of these people are hunters with firearms.... i was in a hut with live ammunition all over a bench once that caught on fire when a stove was knocked over, you really don't want to be around drunk or hung over hunters, you wonder how many shot hunters were shot by hungover hunters...
This post has been edited by the author on 15 November 2017 at 16:35.
I don't think we should be overstating this problem.
We've already agreed its the 1% minority that might get pissed at a hut and cause problems.
I've never been in a hut where there's been drunk people,which may just be lucky for me,but its certainly appears to be isolated occasions...annoying as they are.
Frankly,I've had more problems with snorers,loud card games and talking around the fire into the small hours.
Wholesome hut activities they might be...
Ive been in 2 huts with drunk people. Most recent was Powel and 2 groups went up to drink. They were loud but not greatly obnoxious at least untill 11.00 when I went to bed and stopped hearing them. In the morning they excelled themselves in the cleanup they did. Far better than the mother and young son who could only be described as slobs.
Less recent was when I was a lot younger before I had met the wife. I will say no more.
Last summer, when I was working in Doubtful Sound, our company transferred across Lake Manapouri and the pass, a charter group.
As gear (and yes, LOTS of alcohol) was transferred off the boat, a 30-year-old bottle of whiskey escaped, and.....
Plop! Straight into the lake! :D
What was really funny was seeing everyone react; scurrying around like confused rats.
One guy was nominated to try and retrieve it. He found some weights and walked into the lake.
Did I say it was summer?
It was the last week of the season, and there was already snow on the tops. :D
He did manage to retrieve the bottle, but his reaction upon exiting the water was very funny indeed!
I dropped in to a hut a couple of years ago but decided against sharing it with 2 "hunters". To our amazement when we went past the next day, they'd managed to shoot a couple of hinds (I think they'd encountered a herd at dusk and blazed away, wounding others by the sounds of it).
They lugged out all the booze they hadn't drunk plus various bits of venison - an enormous weight. Personally I would have hidden the booze and come back for it another day.
The problem these days is that you can't rely on getting away from these feral losers by tramping into a remote hut, as you might have done twenty years ago.
Before easy helicopter access, these dropkicks, who are really just bogans with guns, and not to be confused with real hunters, wouldn't have had the physical capability to walk more than thirty minutes from the carpark let alone two days into a hut.
I couldn't think of anything worse than getting to somewhere like Tarn Ridge after ten hours walking, only to find it full of obnoxious drunks.
Ironically I got up to tarn ridge hut after a long hike from the the pines car park and found a film crew up there filming the dulux ad. It was a 30degree day and the beer they offered my was well received, gave me the boost I needed for the final push to Dorset ridge hut.
Hoons,bogans,meatheads, whatever you want to call them, are idiots no matter where you meet them. But I always steer clear of broad generalisations too. It's quite often the man and not the alcohol.
Quite often when my partner comes tramping with me I'll take a bottle of wine. I'm not against a man having a dram of whisky after slogging his backside up a mountain either. It helps to refresh and relax. Lighten the mood.
But anyone that goes to a hut to write themself off is an idiot. I don't like the idea of helicopters in the hills anyway. I think it's a place to earn your reward.
When you go to easy access huts you are going to tend to find people you don't want to share a hut with anyway. They are usually not even drinking. Powell hut for me is not a destination, it's a place to enjoy my morning tea before pushing into the real country.
This post has been edited by the author on 16 November 2017 at 10:58.
As I mentioned above, it's the behaviour that's the problem. I don't care what the root cause is, it's not my problem to solve and nor do I feel the need to tolerate it.
Been travelling around various Australian parks this past month, and one common notice on all camp grounds (no matter how remote) is a warning to the effect that camping there is a privilege not a right, and that offenders will be asked to leave by parks staff or prosecuted if the situation merits it.
We don't need any new laws or alcohol bans ... just a clear message that bogan behaviour in anywhere on the DoC estate that offends or frightens others is an offense under law and will have consequences.