This article was first published in the Tararua Tramper in September 1997
Kime - Tregear Spur - Snowy River - Rae Ridge
31 May - 1 June 1997
This trip had recently been added to Dave's "to do" list and with none of us available for any of the longer Queen's Birthday weekend trips we took the opportunity to fit it onto the unofficial fixture card.
A very early start from Wellington on the Saturday morning saw us crossing the Waiotauru River swingbridge at Otaki Forks just after 7.30am. There was just enough light coming through the heavy grey clouds so that we did not need torches to start. We arrived at Field Hut just as the overnight group of students from Upper Hutt were preparing to tackle the Southern Crossing. We didn't like their chances at that point.
We had a quick snack, and pulled on parkas as we left the hut. By the time we were on Table Top we were experiencing a very strong westerly wind, accompanied by mist and drizzle. As we crossed the western fringes of Bridge Peak we were buffeted with severe horizontal hail and rain Over Hut Mound, and the ever-familiar apparition that is Kime Hut materialised out of the swirling mist. No sooner were we inside than Michael pulled out a tape measure and was back outside 'measuring up'. for another task to be done in the coming summer. Dave meanwhile had got the primus going to produce very welcome hot soup.
Just as we were finishing lunch the group of students staggered in and made it plain that they were staying for the night - the tops were not a pleasant place to be for a prolonged period that day! So we left them in the chill of Kime and headed for new territory.
We started out along the track to Field Peak and then struck off in a south-west direction onto what is known as Tregear Spur, which curls in a north-west direction between the waters of Tregear Creek and the Snowy River. There is a route of sorts down this spur and for most of the afternoon we were able to make steady progress. As is often the case we came across delightful campsites too early in the afternoon to be useful. About 4pm we dropped off the spur near spot height 594 and descended about 300m into the river valley of he Snowy, where we made ourselves comfortable for the night.
Sunday morning weather was a mixture of drizzle, showers and sun as we made our way down the Snowy. At one tight spot we were forced to let the waters 'tickle the navel' in order to save a high sidle.
When we reached the junction of the Snowy and Tregear Creek we struck up the spur running north. We picked our way over, under and around windfalls and second growth; and on occasion made use of overgrown logging roads. At the top of the spur we came out into a clearing just as the sun broke free and so a delightful lunch was taken to get some warmth back.
After lunch we continued along the spur top to meet up with the track along Rae Ridge From there it was all downhill to Sheridan Creek, across the Waiotauru and along the road to the car park by the ranger's residence. It had been a varied trip in a not-often-visited part of Tararua Forest Park.
- Party members were
- Bill Allcock, Michael Bartlett, Teri Goh, Dave Reynolds, Tim Stone.