Sunday, March 30, 2014


In March I spent a couple of weeks back in New Zealand, catching up with friends and family, and going tramping (hiking) in the Victoria Range above Reefton. As well as camping equipment, wet weather gear and food, I hauled my camera up the hill. And it was worth it.

The track climbed 1100m in 9km. It follows an old mining trail to the Kirwan's Reward gold mine which operated at the turn of the Twentieth Century. The miners used horse and cart to haul their supplies up the hill. We found the remains of a few carts alongside the track, and chunks of quartz from the remains of the mineralised formation the miners were chasing. There's not much left, and what there is is hidden in steep, thick, remote rainforest. It's amazing that Kirwan found it at all.

The lower portion of the track winds through red beech forest. The air smelled of honey dew, and we were followed by bush robins and fantails. We even saw a weka when we stopped for a rest.

Higher up, the forest is dominated by silver beech. It's lower, darker and claustrophobic. Luckily we could see flashes of scenery through gaps in the trees.

A welcome sight - Kirwan's Hut

Just resting
 Looking back

 Sunset after a long day's walk

 Morning mist

The next day we checked out the remains of Kirwan's Reward mine, and climbed to the ridgeline to enjoy views from the Southern Alps to the Paparoa Ranges.

Our last night was capped off with a gorgeous sunset. The next day we descended to the valleys and returned to the world.


Blogger heather said...

wow.. I didn`t even know Mt kirwan existed and i was brought up in Greymouth.great photos.

1:59 pm  

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