It’s the height of summer (insert joke about Wellington weather here) and tramping’s prime time. While you feel almost obligated to do a big trip over Christmas, it’s an open secret that festive weather can best be described as “mixed”. Those of us down south over New Year (and at times it seemed like nearly everyone using the Mountain Radio Service was an ex or current WTMCer) experienced the extremes of a New Zealand holiday period. We had an unexpected helicopter ride, saw some amazing waterfalls, but never actually used pack covers – thanks to strategic hut days. Now, as February looms, we should be able to look forward to some genuinely good weather. It’s a great time to be making plans, or doing big trips if your leave and budget allow.
The nice thing about long trips is that a day or two of rain isn’t a disaster. Often you have the time to sit it out or put plan B (or C) into play. At Anniversary weekend, some of us headed to Kahurangi with the 1000 acre plateau our intended destination. For some on the trip it was their third attempt; others their second. That weekend, everywhere else it rained. But we enjoyed three days of waterless, windless beauty. Though there were some clouds at times. It added weight to my (not particularly logical) theory that if you attempt to go somewhere enough times, eventually the weather will come through.
Unfortunately the vagaries of our calendar mean this year is minus two public holidays, with Waitangi day falling at the weekend and Anzac on Easter Monday. So we’ve added a threeday weekend to the schedule in early March to provide a long-weekend opportunity – check out the trips to Nelson Lakes and the Raglan Range, and make sure you sign up early.