From Lake Norma, Elaine Stream to Lake Annie head via Anehu Pass and Elaine Stream
Distance: 9.9 km (10.0 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Moderate terrain
Altitude: 419m to 1344m. Gain: 994m. Loss: 437m . Gradient: 8 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills: Prolonged scrambles (4/7) - Occasional rivers (3/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Lake Norma is passed on the eastern shore - initially a low sidle in the bush and later on beaches / flats near the lake. There is marginal camping at the delta halfway up the lake - the only viable camping spotted in this section.

Once past lake Norma, follow good deer trails up the valley cutting gently right back towards the river and avoiding climbing the slopes above. Moderate going on the true right on now-easier moraine leads to the outlet of the next unnamed lake. The lake can be crossed at its outlet as it is 'normally' passed on the western shore (I saw no reason the eastern shore is not viable, but Moirs recommends west).

Clearings at the lake-head extend some distance upstream and have good dry grass terraces on gravel banks in places for good-looking camping.

Continue up Elaine Stream sticking near the creek where good clearings and occasional river-bed gravels provide easy travel. From the forks of Anehu Stream it is easier to continue briefly up the western branch in clearings and then cut across the band of bush towards the base of the waterfall in Anehu.

Keeping on the true left of Anehu Stream, close to the stream until you pick up a narrow steep spur climbing due south up the face starting immediately west of the waterfall. Good deer trails shoukd point the way. Ascend this steep spur for 100m (the spur becomes a gully later as it climbs - just stick to the deer trails). Once above 600m and above the bluffs, sidle your way east into the hanging valley of Anehu Stream. This sidle is steep and scrubby and deer trails were of little assistance.

Follow the gentle valley of Anehu Stream upriver on the south side to the forks in Anehu Stream. Follow deer trails up the spur immediately west of the southern fork ast initial steep waterfalls/water chutes. Look out for a good spot to cross the southern branch onto the spur between the two creeks. In low water there were many such spots, but in high flows this could be tricky as most crossings have very poor runouts.

Climb the spur between the two creeks until you reach gentle slopes at around 760m. Deer trails sidle north from here to rejoin the north branch of Anehu Stream as it enters the next series of open marshy flats. Good campspots are scattered through these flats where old gravel banks near the creek provide dry locations.

At the head of the marshy clearings the valley swings back east. Follow the creek upstream and pick up good deer trails on the southern bank which lead up the very steep scrubby face south of the first waterfall. Once above the first falls and into tussock it is easy to cross to the northern bank and climb the obvious route up gentle faces to reach the first lake in the valley above.

Cross the lake outlet and head south up either the western ridgeline or the valley floor until you reach the largest lake at the head of the valley. Cross the lake outlet and climb to the western of the two passes (west of pt1416) - a moderate but safe climb.

A very steep gut leads from the western pass down into the head of Awe Burn. This still held snow/ice in mid January and crampons would have been a good idea. As with al fiordland travel - an ice-axe was essential.

Descend the steep gut into the flat head of the Awe Burn and follow it down to the head of the lake. Marginal camping exists at the lake head, but better spots are available at the lake outlet.

7-10 hrs

See also : Moir's Guide South. Ed 7 Pg 134. Lake Annie to Camelot River via Anehu Pass and Elaine Stream

Last updated by: Madpom at 2020-01-18 21:18:49. Experienced: 2020-01-14
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