Hiking around Nelson Lakes/St James Late April
Hi All, Hoping to pick the brains of some of the experienced folk out there! I am ambitiously hoping to do a bit of solo tramping ~19th to 26th April but have little experience with NZ mountain weather around that time of year as I have only hiked around in the middle of summer! The route I'm hoping to take is as follows: 19th: Lewis Pass - Ada Pass Hut 20th: Ada Pass Hut - Bob's Hut via Three Tarn Pass 21st: Bob's Hut - Campsite somewhere below David's Saddle 22nd: Over David's Saddle to somewhere below Moss Pass 23rd: Over Moss pass to enjoy Blue Lake 24th: Over Waiau and as far down the Waiau Valley as I can get 25th: Pushing on to Cannibal Gorge Hut and possibly further to hitch back to Chch, 25th/26th. If time is running short then I can bypass blue lake and take D'Urville Pass over to Lake Thompson and and then down to follow the Waiau River back. I consider myself fit and able, but haven't gone off the marked trail like this before. I am also cautious of the weather and having only ~ 10.5 hours sunlight this time of year. So to the questions! What sort of gear should I definitely be bringing for a trip like this? I don't think I have ample wet weather gear so I am considering buying Marmot Precip Top and Btms to keep me warm and hopefully dry. Is my schedule achievable? What sort of weather should I expect? Am I mad trying to do this solo as a first? Does anyone want to come with me? Thanks for any and all help!
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Lots of good advice there. OK, given that background, twilly, why not go up onto the Lewis tops? Lots of possibilities (always assuming decent weather). An out-and-back if the weather window is short. A partial loop from Lewis Pass, through Brass Monkey biv, and out via either Rough Ck track or Lucretia & Nina huts. Near 3-Tarns pass, there are a couple of tarns S and SE of Gloriana Peak that are worthwhile goals. Not simple topology, you'd need to concentrate on navigation. Or perhaps (from Lewis Pass) a traverse through Zampa to SH 1662, 1687, 1692, 1681 then drop down to Ada Pass Hut (+ side trip up to 3-Tarns?) and out via Cannibal Gorge Hut.
Hi twilly, I can certainly vouch for the trip that pageix referred to: https://tramper.nz/5343/waiau-clarence-pass-lake-tennyson-circuit/ as a challenging but slightly less committing alternative that still gets you to Blue Lake and Waiau Pass. We travelled in the reverse direction to that description and took 4 days. We walked from Blue lake hut to Caroline Creek in a day without any trouble at all, so I wouldn't be concerned about that. Lake Tennyson Road, depending on the day of week, is pretty well travelled, whoever is driving up that road is highly likely to pick up a solo tramper. Good luck and take care Morris
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