Queenstown – June 31st/Aug 1st. Combined trip with the Hokonui Tramping Club.
Eight of us, including one of our newest, and the youngest club member, (13) left Oamaru early Saturday morning to be in Queenstown by 11.30. There we were joined by two other NOTMC people already in Queenstown and five Hokonui members — including one who now lives in Napier! Shane from Hokonui had planned a walk round the Mt Crichton Loop track, taking in the Lake Dispute track and we set out from Twelve Mile Delta about 1.00pm. We walked a well formed track, gently uphill through beech forest till we stopped for lunch at a restored historic gold miners hut, once lived in by Sam Summers and his family. Nearby there are other interesting remnants of gold mining times including a rock tunnel which was an old tail race. From there we climbed a bit higher to come out into open tussocky land, enjoyed great views and then dropped back down the Glenorchy Rd via the Lake Dispute walkway.
Depending on interests and levels of energy, people did a variety of things on Saturday night including night skiing, attending a free concert on the slopes, a fire works display, riding the luge and enjoying a good pub meal in town topped off by watching the NZ Womens’ Sevens team win gold at the Olympics.
Sunday, the two extra NOTMC did their own thing and two others decided to do a different short walk than the main group, so the group was a little smaller, but we were also joined by another Hokonui member there for just the day. We did a shorter walk departing from Arrowtown, walking along the Arrow Gorge Track to join the Saw Pit Gully track. A good climb through beech forest again to a saddle with views over the lakes then back down to Bush Creek to the cars parked near the old Chinese settlement. Lunch in Arrowtown and home, having been exceptionally lucky with the weather, no rain at all despite a very wet weather forecast.
Many thanks to Shane from Hokonui who planned the walks, organised the accommodation and generally kept everyone in order. It was a very enjoyable trip, and a good opportunity to meet new people to swap stories and ideas with. People enjoyed the chance to choose different walks and activities and both clubs agreed we’d like to get together for a joint trip again some time in the not too distant future.