(draft) Trip: My Trip
Distance: 82.1 km (48.4 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Moderate-hard terrain
Altitude: 615m to 1868m. Gain: 7197m. Loss: 6844m . Gradient: 10 deg (Steep)
Skills: Prolonged scrambles (4/7) - Prolonged rivers (4/6) Winter - Snow/ice underfoot, avalanche risk (3/7)


From Lakehead Hut to Travers River Bridge via Lakehead Track
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Distance: 4.5 km (1.2 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy terrain
Altitude: 615m to 672m. Gain: 112m. Loss: 64m . Gradient: 2 deg (Flat)
Skills:
GPX info source: Uploaded from GPS

From Lakehead Hut, the track leads upstream rising and falling just a little, traversing the long grass of the flats, re-entering the beech shortly before the bridge.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-06-29 07:17:51. Experienced: 2011-04-13

From Travers River Bridge to Tk junction via Travers Tk
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Distance: 4.5 km (1.5 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy terrain
Altitude: 663m to 728m. Gain: 173m. Loss: 120m . Gradient: 4 deg (Gentle)
Skills:
GPX info source: Uploaded from GPS

Rising only 60m in 4.5km, the track is essentially flat, crossing a few clearings but mostly in the beech and remaining on the TL of Travers River. Cascade Tk is marked just after crossing the bridged Hopeless Ck.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-06-29 07:27:59. Experienced: 2011-04-13

NZTM2000: 1583004, 5356538 (alt: 717m)

Junction of Travers and Cascade tracks

Created by: Bernieq on 2015-06-28. Experienced: 2011-04-13

From Tk junction to John Tait Hut via Travers Tk
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Distance: 4.6 km (1.5 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 716m to 816m. Gain: 214m. Loss: 115m . Gradient: 4 deg (Gentle)
Skills:
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Remaining on the TL, the track rises gently. The hut can be found on the edge of a large slip.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-06-29 07:42:18. Experienced: 2011-04-13

From Tk junction to UPPER TRAVERS HUT via Travers Track
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Distance: 5.1 km (2.7 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 836m to 1319m. Gain: 523m. Loss: 40m . Gradient: 6 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills: - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

From the bridge over Cupola Creek, the track climbs steeply through to Upper Travers Hut, relenting only infrequently. After a km, a marked side track leads down to Travers Falls.

The track continues to climb to a swing bridge that crosses to the TR and again resumes the climb to a clearing in front of the hut.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-07-10 03:36:48. Experienced: 2011-04-14

NZTM2000: 1579307, 5347927 (alt: 1334m)

Serviced Hut - located on the edge of bush, the hut is visible across the clearing when approaching from downstream.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-06-29 08:54:01. Experienced: 2011-04-13

From UPPER TRAVERS HUT to Travers Saddle via poled route
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Distance: 2.0 km (1.3 DOC hours) - Marked route - Moderate terrain
Altitude: 1316m to 1789m. Gain: 481m. Loss: 12m . Gradient: 14 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills:
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Descend from the hut to the clearing and follow the path to the bridge crossing to the TL.

Now follow the pole line to Travers Saddle. An initial climb away from the hut levels of a little before turning towards Mt Travers and climbing the cirque side.

It's an obvious and straight-forward track all the way.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-06-29 09:05:14. Experienced: 2011-04-14

From Travers Saddle to West Sabine Hut via East Sabine River
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Distance: 5.5 km (5.0 DOC hours) - Marked route - Moderate-hard terrain
Altitude: 659m to 1788m. Gain: 129m. Loss: 1242m . Gradient: 15 deg (Steep)
Skills:
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Descending from the pass, the route picks up the obvious tounge of tussock and moves to the TR of the initial gut. Descending further and moving away from the initial gut, the footpad stays close to the bottom of scree and crosses a slight ridge.

The main descent gut comes into view - move to the top of the chute and descend (left, right or on the scree - whatever is easiest) steeply to the treeline. The track descends the final 100m to the East Sabine River then continues a few hundred metres to a fixed bridge that crosses to the TL of the river.

Now under beech, the track descends gently at first, finally a very steep short descent to a little upstream of the East and West branch confluence. A few hundred metres upstream is the West Sabine Hut.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-06-29 08:22:19. Experienced: 2011-04-14

From West Sabine Hut to Blue Lake Hut via West Sabine River
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Distance: 6.7 km (3.5 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 675m to 1189m. Gain: 551m. Loss: 37m . Gradient: 5 deg (Moderate)
Skills: - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Crossing to the TL at the swingbridge, the track remains close to the river as it heads upstream.

Mostly gently rising, there are two short sharp climbs as the track approaches Blue Lake. Some lengths of boardwalk assist with dry boots and signal that the hut is very close.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-07-10 06:20:21. Experienced: 2013-02-14

From Blue Lake campsite to Waiau Pass via Lake Constance
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Distance: 5.9 km (3.0 DOC hours) - Marked route - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 1182m to 1866m. Gain: 1075m. Loss: 391m . Gradient: 15 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills: Occasional scrambles (3/7) - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Uploaded from GPS

From Blue Lake, the route is poled all the way to Waiau Pass (and on to the valley floor).
Initially gently rising and open, once to the trees the track steepens. A rising track leads to the true left of Lake Constance brings you to a steep scree climb then a traverse to the mid-point of the lake.
Although there have been recorded deaths above the lake, the track is straight forward. However, take care if you choose to approach the top of the bluffs as the fall to the lake is sheer.
The poled route leads to a steep descent in a gut and to the lake shore – then along to the lake head and across the valley floor (good campsites 100m before the start of the climb) and up up up to Waiau Pass.
It’s steep but the initial section on larger rocks is stable. The track moves onto a grass tongue until an obvious footpad angles up, across the scree, towards a grassy shelf. A useful tarn at the base of the final ascent to the pass means less water needs to be hauled up from the valley.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-06-21 02:41:34

From Waiau Pass to Waiau Valley track junction via poled route
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Distance: 1.6 km (1.0 DOC hours) - Marked route
Altitude: 1300m to 1868m. Gain: 24m. Loss: 590m . Gradient: 23 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills: Prolonged scrambles (4/7)
GPX info source: Uploaded from GPS

On the map, this route looks steep and risky - in wet or icy weather it would be. However, poled all the way, in good weather this is a simple descent on good, grippy rock.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-06-21 02:42:16. Experienced: 2013-02-15

From Waiau Valley track junction to Thompson Pass via Lake Thompson
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Distance: 2.7 km (2.5 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Moderate terrain
Altitude: 1306m to 1791m. Gain: 510m. Loss: 29m . Gradient: 12 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills: Occasional scrambles (3/7) - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Uploaded from GPS

Crossing the river to the TR, we tried to cut the corner but travel was easier closer to the stream.

Crossing back to the TL involved a scramble down and up out of the stream. Then a stiff climb to the gut (and fault line) that runs up to Lake Thompson. We traveled in the gut but travel would also be good on the ridgetop. From Lake Thompson, it's a short climb to Thompson Pass, first on a grassy tongue, then on rock.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2017-10-12 07:20:34. Experienced: 2013-02-15

From Thompson Pass to D'Urville Pass via high route
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Distance: 3.3 km (2.5 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear
Altitude: 1655m to 1825m. Gain: 523m. Loss: 507m . Gradient: 18 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills: Prolonged scrambles (4/7)
GPX info source: Uploaded from GPS

From the Pass we climbed to the east (there is an obvious grassy ramp back from the middle of the pass) and picked our way through the rocks (occasionally spotting cairns) to descend to a bit of a ledge, initially at the 1800m contour and then at 1700m. Rather than traverse below the final bluffs, we climbed a steep shallow gut – a very easy approach to D’Urville Pass.

You need good visibility for this route.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-06-21 02:43:22. Experienced: 2013-02-16

From D'Urville Pass to Davids/Matakitaki forks via Matakitaki River
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Distance: 0.0 km (2.0 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Moderate terrain
Altitude: 1250m to 1815m. Gain: 19m. Loss: 584m . Gradient: -70 deg (Moderate)
Skills: Alpine weather (2/7) - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Uploaded from GPS

Descending from the pass, there is good scree for slide-stepping to the obvious tarn in quick time. Then move left of the tarn to the top of the gut descending SW to the Matakitaki Valley floor. Initially steep, it starts to look like bluffing out but it’s a simple boulder-hop to the bottom.
Once down, progress is easiest on the rocks in the river until almost the treeline. 1km from the bushedge the 'V' chute descending from Davids Saddle can be seen joining the valley from the north.

Last updated by: Madpom at 2015-08-24 17:31:55. Experienced: 2013-02-16

From Davids/Matakitaki forks to East Matakitaki Hut via Matakitaki River
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Distance: 0.0 km (3.0 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Moderate terrain
Altitude: 896m to 1247m. Gain: 172m. Loss: 523m . Gradient: 456 deg (Moderate)
Skills: - Prolonged rivers (4/6) Winter - Snow/ice underfoot, avalanche risk (3/7)
GPX info source: Uploaded from GPS

From the point where the Davids Saddle route joins the Matakitaki valley downstream, there are intermittent footpads, requiring frequent river crossings to pick up easier travel on the grassy flats. Just 2km from the hut, on the TL, is a benched cut 1km track, initially climbing away from the river and then back to the flats. 1km above the hut, we crossed to the grassy flat on the TR, crossing back to the TL at the hut.

Last updated by: Ellya at 2018-04-10 20:39:07. Experienced: 2018-04-01

Distance: 4.9 km (1.5 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy terrain
Altitude: 719m to 897m. Gain: 163m. Loss: 333m . Gradient: 6 deg (Flat)
Skills:
GPX info source: Uploaded from GPS

All on-track and in the trees, from the hut, follow the obvious markers on the true left. There are a few boggy sections but nothing serious. Shortly before the west river branch walkwire there is a sign to the east branch walkwire and access to downstream Matakitaki river, the gorge and Downie's Hut.

Depending on time of year, beware of European wasps in this section.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-06-21 02:44:22. Experienced: 2013-02-17

From West Matakitaki River walkwire to Bobs Hut via West Matakitaki River
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Distance: 3.3 km (2.0 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 726m to 852m. Gain: 304m. Loss: 186m . Gradient: 9 deg (Moderate)
Skills: - Occasional rivers (3/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Having crossed to the TL on the 3-wire bridge, there is a short sharp climb to the 800m contour. Then, rising and falling, is a well defined track, under beech for a little over 2km before breaking out into a clearing.

At the other end, 1km away, is Bobs Hut. We kept to the TL and crossed easily at low water levels directly opposite the hut.

This crossing would be problematic following heavy rain.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-06-21 04:12:31. Experienced: 2013-02-15

From Bobs Hut to Cairn - W Matakitaki Crossing via W Matakitaki River
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Distance: 5.0 km (1.5 DOC hours) - Unmaintained track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 837m to 1108m. Gain: 292m. Loss: 28m . Gradient: 4 deg (Flat)
Skills: - Prolonged rivers (4/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

A short distance from Bobs Hut, the track crosses the river to the TR (not possible in higher flows) and stays on the TR whilst under the trees. The side streams make for quite a few boggy sections.

Once at the clearing (from 1070m contour) pick your way across the grassy flat, crossing and recrossing the stream. In high flow, keeping to the TR would be OK but would take longer.

Created by: Bernieq on 2015-06-22. Experienced: 2013-02-18

Distance: 4.9 km (4.0 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Moderate terrain
Altitude: 1108m to 1857m. Gain: 864m. Loss: 115m . Gradient: 12 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills: - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Uploaded from GPS

The route from the cairn is uncomplicated – cross to the true left and climb (steeply) away from the river to an obvious saddle, avoiding the Spaniard grass. Then gradually descend back to the river, below a major gut on the true left. From here, stay in the river, boulder-hopping, until just below the final climb to the tarns – easy travel.

For the climb to 3 Tarns, we exited the river to the TL at the 1400m contour - in hindsight, it would probably be better to continue in the stream to the 1600m contour.

Created by: Bernieq on 2015-06-21. Experienced: 2013-02-18

From Three Tarns Pass to Ada Pass Hut via unnamed tarn
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Distance: 4.5 km (3.0 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Moderate terrain
Altitude: 979m to 1857m. Gain: 124m. Loss: 983m . Gradient: 14 deg (Moderate)
Skills: - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Uploaded from GPS

Descend from the pass on a sizeable boulder-field to the obvious tarn and continue south straight over the edge (rather than seeking a route down to the east of the tarn). More boulders/scree makes a simple, quick descent to the creek (just 30 min from the tarn).

After reaching the creek, it’s a cairned route (mostly) to the treeline (NZTM 1555288 5317043) and a marked track from there to the St James Walkway, turning left for Ada Pass Hut.

Created by: Bernieq on 2015-06-21. Experienced: 2013-02-19

From Ada Pass Hut to Cannibal Gorge Hut via St James Walkway
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Distance: 3.9 km (1.5 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 896m to 1007m. Gain: 82m. Loss: 183m . Gradient: 4 deg (Gentle)
Skills:
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Part of the St James Walkway, this is a well defined track.

A short distance from Ada Pass hut along the track through the grassy flats is a fixed bridge that crosses to the TR of Maruia River (right branch).

Never far from the river, the walkway continues gently downstream to Cannibal Gorge Hut.

Created by: Bernieq on 2015-06-29. Experienced: 2013-02-19

From Cannibal Gorge Hut to Maruia River Swing Bridge via St James Walkway
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Distance: 5.6 km (2.8 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 725m to 908m. Gain: 482m. Loss: 654m . Gradient: 12 deg (Moderate)
Skills: - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

From the hut, the track heads downstream crossing the clearing and entering the bush and crossing a bridged side-stream.

Now the track enters Cannibal Gorge and, with some ups and downs, is usually well above the river.

A steep, zig zagging descent arrives at the swing bridge that crosses to the TL.

Created by: Bernieq on 2015-06-29. Experienced: 2013-02-20

From Maruia River Swing Bridge to Lewis Pass via St James Walkway
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Distance: 1.8 km (0.7 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 720m to 864m. Gain: 190m. Loss: 54m . Gradient: 8 deg (Moderate)
Skills: - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Having crossed to the TL of Maruia River (right branch), the track climbs steeply, zig zagging to ease the gradient, to Alpine Tarn and the Lewis Pass trailhead.

Created by: Bernieq on 2015-06-29. Experienced: 2013-02-20

From Maruia River Swing Bridge to Lewis Pass via St James Walkway
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Distance: 1.8 km (0.7 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 720m to 864m. Gain: 190m. Loss: 54m . Gradient: 8 deg (Moderate)
Skills: - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Having crossed to the TL of Maruia River (right branch), the track climbs steeply, zig zagging to ease the gradient, to Alpine Tarn and the Lewis Pass trailhead.

Created by: Bernieq on 2015-06-29. Experienced: 2013-02-20


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