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Trip Reports 1999-07-24 Climie-Tunnel Gully

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This article was first published in the Tararua Tramper in December 1999

North Climie - Upper Climie Creek Main Track North - Tunnel Gully

Saturday 24 July 1999

It was a fine, cold morning going up the road, noting a thick mist below, enveloping the valleys west.

At North Climie we donned parkas against wet vegetation. I had previously done cutting through the fierce scrub belt to the south-east to place us at the head of the forested spur, which leads us down to the Upper Climie Creek Forks. The route from the head of this spur goes east and descends steadily through delightfully open forest. Masaki checked the way down with me as we got the brunt of the wet vegetation. From the microwave to the forks is a dog-leg descent of about 370m/1220ft.

These forks are amongst the most attractive in local ranges. The south arm usually carries more water (from a larger catchment) than the north arm, and at the forks has a flat camping ledge protected from wind. The north arm has a rougher passage between large rocks. From below the forks looking upstream is quite spectacular, as Bill captured on camera.

Then we went up the north arm, firstly avoiding large boulders in criss-crossing but not getting wet feet, sidling an old, tall log jam, and edging along a slippery windfall. We also passed an unlisted side-creek on the the left that was real because Dave R., Tim, Glenys and I of today's party, came down that creek as members of Syd Moore's "adventurers" on 31 January 1998! In minutes we were at the forks on the north arm for an early lunch. Behind us, old windfalls almost buried the west feeder, while the north feeder poured down as a vertical waterfall about 100 metres from us - one of the trip's highlights. After lunch, the plan was to cross the north feeder/waterfall outlet to a steep spur opposite, which would lead up to the disced track - a climb of 320m/1050ft. Rhonda set a cracking pace through the wet vegetation. We were pleased there was NO supplejack belt, and other obstacles of minor consequence only.

Once on the marked track, we proceeded mainly north over Bumps 857m, 792m and 614m to the junction south of Tunnel Peak for light refreshments. Then a swift descent west of about 380m/1250ft in 35 minutes to the road and carpark by 3.30pm - still in fine weather.

The party: Rhonda Billington, Glenys Evans, Masaki Kojima, Colin Cook, Dave Reynolds, Tim Stone, Bernard Molloy, Bill Allcock, Dave Dyett, Craig McKenzie, Peter Jagger (leader and scribe)

Page last modified on 2005 Dec 22 00:40

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