Waianakarua North Branch – 27th Feb
The Sunday mornign started cooler than hoped, at just 14 degrees maximum temperature forecast..
The Waianakarua North Branch river explore is a trip that has been done by the club quite a few times in the past, but not in recent memory so was an unusual one compared to a normal day tramp. Unfortunately the only members on this trip was me and my son Reuben, who was keen to do it again after enjoying the reconnaisance explore a few weeks prior.
Starting at the DOC Glencoe campsite, we put on our short-sleeved wetsuits and set off up the river. The sides of the rived quickly narrow to a spectacular gorge, requiring some easy scrambling to stay relatively dry. At this point we saw a very long eel slowly cruising up the river.
After about 40 minutes we reached the crux of the trip – this involves a little swim and then a tricky climb out of the water. Once I got over that, was another spectacular gorge with waist deep water to wade through.
Because of the cool temperature we were starting to get a chill at this point, so began to make our way back downstream. Much quicker than the way up as we swam the bits that we were keeping dry avoiding ont he way up!
The river up from Glencoe is like a mountain stream, but easy for is to visit from Oamaru – would definitely recommend visiting again, taking a picnic in a dry bag to enjoy in a secret spot. Would only recommend on a warm day – 18degrees or more so as not to get the chills..