Altitude: 790m to 1633m. Gain: 337m. Loss: 845m . Gradient: 15 deg (Moderate)
Skills: Occasional scrambles (3/7) - Streams (2/5)
From the Melita Saddle climb the spur towards Consolation Peak. There are several small layers of bluffs but they are all passable. At around 1500m a broad gentler-sloping face is reached leading across the north face of Consolation. Follow this face west to the saddle with Mistake Creek, keeping above steep faces and bluffs below. I ended up climbing to ~1600m to get round the last steep bluffs before the saddle, but other parties report sticking to lower narrower terraces at ~1500m all the way to the saddle.
There are camp spots and water on the saddle, but the are exposed to the south. Below that the valley is too steep, scrubby or marshy to camp until the main forks.
From the eastern side of the Falls-Mistake Saddle, follow the creek down, scrambling down the true left of a series of small waterfalls into the basin below. The creek can be followed on either bank through rough rock, tussock and low scrub until about 1100m.
The descent from the hanging valley to the main Mistake flats below is normally made in mature beech 50m south of the creek. This involves a tough 150m scrub bash from the creek to the bushedge. Once in the bush reasonable deer trails follow a small spur and layer gullies to reach the valley floor.
There are flat, dry but flood prone campspots on the flat open valley floor - but more protected bush campspots exist on the bushedge just south of the creek leading to U Pass.
Melita-Forks 2-4 hrs