Swampy Ridge Track

13th September 2020

We met Rodney, Helen and Jane at Leith Saddle and after taking a vehicle to the bottom of Nicholls Creek Track on the Leith Valley Rd, we started walking up the Leith Saddle Track.  This wide track has been well maintained with boards along the side. We soon warmed up and by 11am, were at Swampy Spur and had an early lunch.  We met up with a group of youths training for the three peaks run.  We continued along Swampy Summit and instead of turning down the Moon Track toward Nicholls Creek, we continued along to the Pineapple Track junction.  It was here where the fire burned alot of scrub last year.  Rodney had come up here soon after the fire and there were just rocks scattered over the area, no flora whatsoever. But a year later the flaxes were 1 metre high, the tussocks just as high though less dense. It was incredible the growth that had occurred.  Five minutes further down the Pineapple Track, we came to the Pepper Tree Track junction and turned here. We walked down into a gully,  had a brief break, and continued up the other side to a clearing and then turned right onto the Moon Track.  We followed this down and crossed some bike tracks which apparently are reasonably new.  Further down, we traversed over towards the south and got to Nicholls Falls, and then 10 minutes later, out onto Leith Valley Road.  Here Graham was waiting, he had biked out to Port Chalmers, Waitati and picked up the car at Leith Saddle.  A good day out on some new tracks.  A big thanks to Rodney for his guidance in the unfamiliar areas. 

Rodney, Helen, Jane, Roz, Mike, John, Ross, Julian and Bess