Into the Landsborough
Anyone know of an access into the upper Landsborough which is non technical, summer friendly? Looking at my Topo I'm thinking via Horace Walker Hut, skirt the lake to Harpers Rock Biv and then over Douglas Pass. Possibly a bit of lower glacier travel on the other side? I'm doing some dreaming of ultimate off the main routes trips and thinking the Landsborough would have to be up there. Is it possible to walk the entire length or do you need to paddle? Or is it realistically in the too hard basket?
Have a read of this. Its 5 parts so set aside a while!: https://tramper.nz/3643/mad-poms-latest-adventure/ https://tramper.nz/3674/karangarua-saddle/
Hi Phil, I've been through that route via the Mahitahi and Zora. The North side of terminal lake of the Douglas is easy enough, just take your time to follow the weaknesses in the route. There is no glacier to cross anymore. You can walk the entire Landborough if you wish, there are some pretty good exit points along the way if your transport options allow it. Definitely not in the too hard category, more like challenging medium trip.
Awesome, thanks for the replies. Been a few years since I read that account of Madpom's adventures, forgot that it went that way. The Karangarua Saddle route looks daunting, especially that photo looking up at the face.
Douglas Pass is just a dawdle, or you can make a round trip by climbing The Gladiator. Get yourself a copy of Moirs Guide North for everything you ever wanted to know about the Landsborough
Straight forward enough from west coast to Horace then over Douglas then out either Elcho or broderick pass and out via Huxley or Hopkins. Worth a night under Harper biv for all its history. Or do it in reverse. Up there as one of the best transalpine trips. Great views on the pass. Read up on traversing Douglas lake and there is a bit of a drop off the ridge enroute to Horace. Oodles of wildlife if the gun ship hasn't cleaned up.
Thanks again, I'm thinking more to do it in reverse, so start at the Haast Pass entry at Pleasant Flat as I can bus it from Queenstown. Then go over the Karangarua Saddle, then Mt Howlett & The Gladiator if it looks doable & out via Horace Walker Hut. Looks like there would be great views from The Gladiator. Finish off with a side trip to Welcome Flats if the time allows - I'll have 10 days walking total.
I wanted to include the gladiator but there was too much verglass on the day. Not sure if your route requires cross the Douglas lake outlet because it looked pretty high both times I was there. Otherwise take an axe even if for plugging in the steep tussock off Douglas onto the flats. You should read up on Harper biv. Tom Fyffe, Charlie mr explorer, mueller etc. it’d make the trip way more nostalgic in my view. Traversing the Douglas is a bit tricky, you need to climb high to traverse above cliffs but under bluffs. Think I posted photos of this on here to help others. Getting down from the biv across the glacier Terminus on unstable Morraine is a bit if a knee popper. All doable though. just be sure to do it favourable weather as the views are unrivalled.
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