This article was first published in The Tararua Tramper in June 1997
Clem Creek Spur - Cone Peak - Walls Whare
2 November 1996
Cone Peak (1080m) and its surrounds, is one of those special places in the Tararuas that keep drawing people back to photograph the Tararua Peaks, to camp there, or to enjoy its special beauty.
We left Wellington at 6.30am and after meeting the rest of our ten strong party at the Brown Owl, we headed for Walls Whare. We parked at the road end and after crossing the swing bridge made our way along the true right of the Waiohine River via the lower Waiohine Track. We made good time to Clem Creek and after a steep little ascent from the stream bed we started to climb Clem Creek spur. The spur was a little wet at the bottom but as we climbed towards bump 572 the under foot conditions improved and we were soon on the easy open terrain which surrounds bump 572.
We joined the track from Makaka Creek to Cone Saddle and tramped a short distance along the track until there was a sharp change in direction from which point we started to climb a rather steep spur to Cone Peak. Under foot conditions were very good and our climb was made easy by a light but cool breeze and the prospect of good views from Cone Peak.
A little southerly during the week had dusted the higher tops with snow, in particular Mt Hector (1529m), Mt Holdsworth (1470m), The Beehives (1489m), Atkinson (1472m) and Isabelle (1385m). To the west two of the peaks on the Southern Main Range also had a small dusting of snow, the snow mountain Maungahuka (1338m), and Aokaparangi (1354m). Our lunch stop was long and most enjoyable as we admired the great views. While walking around Cone after lunch we noted that the Cone Ridge and Neill-Winchcombe tracks have been recut; well done DoC.
We descended to Cone Saddle by the usual route which had also been given a DoC trim. From Cone Saddle (566m) we made our way to the junction of the tracks to Reeves and Walls Whare, the latter track was followed to the swing bridge to end a most enjoyable day trip.
- The party members were
- Peter Jagger, Michael Bartlett, Teri Goh, Michael Hartley, Tim Stone, Peter Bartra, Dave Podmore, Syd Moore, Bernard Molloy and Dave Reynolds (leader and scribe).