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Trip information, past trips and contacts for Wanderers Tramping Club

This page shows Club trip reports

Private Trips Reports

Click here to jump to a page that contains reports and photos for trips that were not part of the Club Program, particularly those trips that go far afield and take more than a weekend. These accounts can inspire members to do their own trips, or merely entertain them.

Tolley Road, Ngaroma. 12 May 2019

Eight lucky trampers started off for the Northern Pureora Forest on a cloudy day, with no concern about weather except for anticipated heavy rain coming in the afternoon.

Along the track, we witnessed countless surprises from natural decorations. White plant roots hovering over the damp ground, colourful watery mushrooms, sparkling insect nets in the looming sun, green leaves waving breeze greetings, the birds jumped on the branches, and the little singers who sang cheerfully. The active parties of all the spirits in the forest make us feel like we are entering the spring that just woke up, instead of autumn.

Excited as we pass through the tall bushes, feeling like we accidentally broke into war-themed movies or a scene of a wild survivor. After successfully passing through a few shallow creeks, we stopped in front of a dilapidated temporary barracks where there were some basic necessities to provide warm shelter for those in need. In the next part of the track, some junior trampers almost exhausted all their energy in conquering the 4*4 off-road vehicle routes on the up and down slopes.

A miracle appeared in the last corner of the track -  a herd of grazing beef cattle followed our steps, tightly lined up on the other side the fence. They curiously looked at us, who are a group of energetic strangers, as if they were enjoying an unexpected fashion show.

Just one second after all of us were sitting in the van ready to go home the heavy rain that had been delayed for a couple hours finally broke out, which shows that the sky tried its best to take good care of us and keep us happy and dry.

Joyce

 

Parakawai 31 March 2019

10 intrepid trampers started off for a leisurely stroll in the  Parakawai Valley, near Whangamata, in weather that was a light and constant smattering of rain that at times turned to showers. It may have dampened the forest, but not our spirits.

There were old railway tracks and crusher machines from days gone past.  Tall Kauri trees were evident as well as lots of fungi, and the incline was so slight you would not have known we were going uphill.

A short and dark tunnel was navigated well, and we found an old mine shaft with new markings – being set up for possible development?

A recent washout created a bit of an exciting moment, and then we crossed over the swing bridge to view the waterfall.  There was no need for a swim as we were all wet by that stage. 

We returned along the same track back to the start. Although he track was very muddy and slippery at times, the scenery was lovely in the rain, and the weather was warm, making the long day thoroughly worth it.

The trip ended with an ice cream for some and coffee for others, at Paeroa.

Susan Rogers

Wentworth Falls 3 March 2019

13 trampers set off for Wentworth Falls near Whangamata.

On arrival at the Wentworth Valley Campground in the Coromandel Forest Park we had morning tea then began the mines walk. We passed two mines which were closed and had danger signs at the entrance so we continued on to the picnic area and down to the river - this was a great warm up walk.

We then started the Wentworth Falls Track. Just past the campground we cleaned our boots at a very well devised boot cleaning station, with brushes and disinfectant, which is installed to help stop the spread of kauri dieback disease.

The walk was on a good pram track; it was wide with a gravel surface. It was a gradual incline for about an hour to the waterfall, and on the way we stopped to look at a swimming hole and to explore a cave where we found lots of cave wetas. We also saw nikau palms which were doing well, and heard a tui or two.

After crossing two wobbly bridges we were soon at the waterfall, which is a 50 metre two-drop waterfall. It was loud, and sparkled in the sunshine. The weather was perfect, blue sky, sunny and hot, but cooler in the bush. We continued on the tramping track up to the top of the waterfall where we had lunch - a lovely spot. After lunch we made our way down the hill, stopped off at the swimming hole where Dianne and Margaret had fun in the water, and made our way back to the van. On the way home, we stopped off for ice cream at the L&P Café in Paeroa.

Thanks to Keith, Dianne and Pam for leading this wonderful walk.

Emma

 

Ed Hillary Hope reserve - 20 January 2019

This was our first tramp of the year and was very well supported 27 keen Wanderers . It was our first visit to the reserve which is on the Old Mountain Road.

We started off following a vehicle track through native bush and then on to open pasture. We then had a steep climb to a disused air strip where we got a great 360 degrees view f the Raglan/Te Pahu area. The pasture land has been heavily planted in manuke and will be a great sight in a few years time.

Then we made our descent down a steep (and slippery for some) slope to the vehicle track, ate lunch, and back to the vans. Ice creams and coffee at Whatawhata put an end to a very enjoyable day.

Big Foot

Vandy Road - 3 February 2019

An enthusiastic group of 17 trampers tackled this tramp. We arrived at the end of Vandy Rd, skipped morning tea and headed up the paper road immediately.

The forecast was for another scorching day so plans were made to get us under the treeline and close to the windmills as possible before lunchtime. Enjoying an unmanicured track we made good time.  There was about ten minutes of steep uphill and scrambling over tree roots before a steady climb through beautiful and pristine bush.  Because everyone had opted to do the 1+ we were spoilt with four leaders but Grant led us through the wilderness spotting the red and orange markers in a timely fashion.   

Following morning tea we had a quick route stop with Lynn taking control and spotting the arrows (etched onto a big tree) which pointed us in the right direction.  We continued on until reaching the fence line where we clambered through a gate into open pasture.  From there it was another 10-15 minute climb where we rested by the formidable windmills and lunched in the cool breeze. 

 The temperature started to ramp up so Grant headed off and we trusted in his instincts to take us back under the bush line by following an old fence down before meeting up with the paper road. This was an interesting reconnoitre following a track that in parts was muddy, slippery and difficult to see.  However, as avid trampers we were all up for the challenge.  Keith was particularly interested in abseiling the big straps that were overhanging a slip.  It was suggested that perhaps the straps were there to assist the motorcyclists traverse the slip. 

The paper road levelled out and this was steady hiking. It was very rutted and deep in parts. This is because it has been used as a four wheel drive track and it shows. The fine weather had helped dry it out but like mountain goats we leapt from side to side with great agility and skill.   It was back to the van before stopping at Whatawhata for ice-cream. 

A big thank you to our drivers and leaders for this especial tramp.  

Scribe – The Wonderer.  

Christmas Party for the Wanderers. 2 December 2018

The 3 van drivers had an interesting trip over the Kaimais, for some parts of the road were a running river - we thought that we were in for a very wet tramp indeed.

On arrival at Te Puna Quarry Park the weather was damp and looked as though it was going to be decidedly worse, but we still managed a cuppa with lovely Christmas fruit cake supplied by Carol. Much to the surprise of all, as we set off around the park it stopped raining and we all enjoyed splendid walks, admiring the views and all the plants and flowers.  It truly is a magnificent spot.  Many flowers were in bloom and there must have been dozens of monarch butterflies as well.

About midday we made a quick change of clothes and set off again in the vans – at which time the heavens opened up again. By the time we were at Waihi Beach it had stopped raining and we enjoyed a good lunch and great company at the Waihi Beach RSA. (The meal was Ham and/or Lamb, potatoes, broccoli and cheese sauce, crumbed fish bites and calamari rings, plus an array of salads. Dessert was the NZ/Aussie favourite of Pavlova and plum pudding with custard and ice-cream.)

With full pukus we then headed home.

A  truly lovely day and excellent way to end another year with the Waikato Wanderers (or as some tables were named “Wonderers”).

Susan

Totara Park/Puhinui Stream Forest Trail 7 October 2018

This tramp coincided with the Chinese New Year Festival, so because of the possibility of a busy car park at the Botanic Gardens, Colin decided that we would park at the Redoubt Road entrance, from where we walked through Totara Park towards the Puhinui stream. Initially there was farmland with good views, and then the pleasant sounds of water and birds when we walked in the bush.  The track was good with a few ups and downs but no trouble for our group.  Lunch was had alongside a children’s playground with seating available. 

Spring flowers greeted us at the Botanic Gardens, especially the blossom of the massed cherry trees. Some of us walked around the gardens while others opted for a coffee at the café.  The café was decorated for the festival and visitors dressed in costumes celebrated in various ways including a dragon dance with the very skilled beating of a drum. We walked back to the vans through massed planting of several varieties of trees including monkey trees - in all we covered about 11 kms.   A very interesting place to visit.

Thanks Colin and Margaret.

Alison O

Karangahake – Grade 2     4 November 2018

Seven of us gathered at the carpark at Karangahake on a cool and rather blustery Spring morning. We had to find our way around the safety fencing at the approaches to the new swing bridge nearing completion, to access the old bridge across the river. We then left the main Karangahake walkway and headed up the Scotsman Gully track which follows a little stream up to join the County Road. Our route took us up the track which one follows to go to the summit. However we kept on a lower level, having morning tea at a spot out of the wind and where there was a view down the valley, before dropping down through the bush to get on to an old disused road. This was clearly a benched road, at times wide and open, at other times almost hidden under regrowth and fallen trees, or fallen away altogether. 

We walked a good way round the mountain on this road before encountering a large fallen tree which was the sign to leave the road and start climbing up through open bush in order to avoid having to cross into private farmland. We soon came back out on the County Road where we had lunch. From there it was a straightforward walk back down to the point where we had left this road in the morning, and Scotsman Gully. 

I had been up - and down - Karangahake in the past but never right round like this, so was grateful for the opportunity. The old benched road brings to mind the huge activity related to mining that was in this area in the past, the various mine drives we passed further reminders.

Highlights for me were the lovely rewarewa flowers and a bellbird feeding on same, the  regenerating bush we walked through and the strong SW wind that we encountered at times before walking into an area of serene stillness. Thanks to Brenda and Lorna for leading this tramp.

Fiona Green

Lake Rotoiti to Lake Okataina - 21 October 2018

2 van loads of intrepid trampers set off for this brand new (for the Wanderers) tramp. A brief stop at the newly renovated Ngongotaha Reserve and then around lakes Rotorua and Lake Rotoiti to the Western Okataina Walkway. We started with a quick morning tea and then had a steady steep climb up to the pylons and ridge - luckily it wasn't a race.

Then a bit of a walk to see the hidden crater which we climbed down into, seeing lots of lovely plants such as wild Clementis and listening to a cuckoo call. Then we crossed the crater and zigged and zagged up the other side to join the Rongomai track.  We looped around a bit and came across a lovley waterfall - Cascade Falls - which at night is covered in glow worms. We had our lunch in this magical place.

After lunch we climbed a bit of a hill and then walked down to the Education Camp and Lake Okataina, which we saw sparkling in the sunshine.

A truly lovely trip.

Susan

McBrinns Track, Maratoto - 23 September 2018

I had not ventured into this area for a number of years, and today was a brilliantly fine day to be out exploring this lovely valley again. Our group of 8 Grade 3 trampers set off with Lorna & Brenda as our guides.

As we passed the old disused Quarry and followed the track up we could hear McBrinn’s Creek flowing off to our right. A little further on we dropped down & crossed the creek for the first of a number of times - some got wet feet, others were lucky not to.

There were a few concrete foundations and odd relics along the way before we reached the old amalgamation plant.  Still lying around we found a steam boiler, water tank, some kind of large pipe & 3 big McKay Amalgamating Pans among other bits & pieces.  These big pans were used for crushing quartz brought in from other mines in the area.  You wonder “how did they get all this big stuff in there?”.

Climbing steeply up to a higher level we explored numerous mine shafts & a long tunnel. Lorna had left a nice rope for the adventurous to drop safely into one of the shafts – and more importantly to get out again! A number of Cave Weta with their long skinny legs could be seen scattered around.

Inside the tunnel the tiny glow worms were a little upset with the light & noise we made, however they soon glowed for us again once all was dark & quiet.  The men explored a little further into the tunnel. 

After this exploration of the mines we lunched in the warmth beside the old dam.

Possum trappers work this area and it was a little un-nerving to find a number of gin traps beside the track & also one smelly skinned possum hanging in a tree.

On our return we ventured up a side track and discovered an old Tin shack still in pretty good nick, before returning to our Van via the same track.

Lynne

PS - you can download the .gpx file of our tramp here.  Ray

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