Arthurs Pass to West Coast - wisdom needed.

Hi Guys Now that NZ's borders are opening, my thoughts are once again turning to some adventure on your fine shores. I’m keen to hear any throughs on the following trip (for Feb-March 2023). I was planning to walk it 2 years ago, but COVID happened!! Looking at it now (and if I am honest with myself) it is a bit ambitious and doesn’t allow enough days for bad weather, but it would be good to get opinions from those who have spent time in this part of the backcountry. I'm also open to suggested alternative routes. Places I would really like to visit are Upper Waimak Hut, Barker hut and Ivory Lake Hut :) I really enjoyed my solo trip through Kahurangi a few years back, so I think I’ll be tramping this one solo as well. Thanks in advance for your help, Cheers, Moh. ----------------------------------------------------------- Day 1 - Arthurs pass Village to upper Waimak hut (HUT) via Mt Philistine & Waimak col Total 9.5-10hrs? Day 2 - Upper Waimak Hut to Barker Hut (HUT) Total 6-8hrs? Day 3 - Barker Hut to Aerial tarns via Harman Pass (CAMP) Total 5.5hrs? Day 4 - Aerial Tarns to Lake Browning via Whitehorn & Browning Pass (CAMP) Total 8-9 hrs? Day 5 - Contingency Day Day 6 - Lake Browning to Lathrop Saddle campsite (CAMP) Total 8.5-10hrs? Day 7 - Lathrop Saddle to Top Kokatahi Hut (HUT) Total 9-11.5 hrs? Day 8 - Top Kokatahi Hut to Bluff Hut (HUT) Total 11.5 - 13.5hrs? Day 9 - Contingency Day Day 10 - Bluff Hut to Price Flat Hut (HUT) Total 11-14hrs? Day 11 - Price Flat Hut to Ivory Lake (HUT) Total 12-14.5hrs? Day 12 - Contingency Day Day 13 - Ivory Lake to dickie Spur hut (HUT) Total 9hrs? Day 14 - Dickie spur hut to Mikonui River road end 3hrs?
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Well, after about a year from my original post, I can happily report that despite the flooding chaos in the north island, I had the South Island weather gods on my side. Just got back from 16 days pretty much following the above planned route. The 2 main departures were that I did give barker but a miss so I could have some fine weather camping on Ariels tarns, and I decided to head over to Ivory Lake via Steadman Brow rather than price basin. Thanks to everyone that gave input. Consistently very rugged country. As mad Pom wrote in the top Kokatahi hut book, there are no easy days in Westland. Time to start planning the next one 😊 Cheers, Moh.
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That's great. Would you be able to update any route information on the net?
Hi Honorar. Happy to do so. Anywhere in particular on the net you had in mind, or any particular sections of the route you feel are lacking info? Moh.
Hi Moh_Oz Just if when you did your route information-seeking and read stuff, if you're noticed any difference between the descriptions and what you encountered. Unless of course you didn't do any research and just figured it from looking at the map (Naysmiths Rules and all that). cheers,
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Epic trip. You must have seen some amazing country. When you went from the Kokatahi to Bluff did you go up and over Zit Saddle and down to the Toaroha or did you traverse the range?
Thanks Dave. Yep, it was amazing country indeed. I traversed the range from zit saddle across to toaroha biv. A bit of exposure at zit saddle at the start of the traverse but not too bad after that, I wouldn’t want to do this bit in strong winds as it was very narrow and exposed. The biggest challenge ended up being the thick low cloud that moved in as I approached Mt Chamberlain, making route finding a bit difficult at times.
2 deleted posts from Buddyqwerty, jw7516506
Thanks Moh_Oz. Good to hear that range can be traversed. I had a plan a few years ago to climb from Mungo Hut up to Commodore Ridge then along the range. Unfortunately, incoming inclement weather on the afternoon I reached Mungo Hut sent me scurrying back to Poet. Luckily I did as after a night of heavy rain the Mungo as a terrifying sight. Now I am back living in the South Island I will have to get down there again one day.
2 deleted posts from Honorar, vosigim445
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Forum Tracks, routes, and huts
Started by Moh_Oz
On 19 March 2022
Replies 17
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