From the President…in June

Welcome to my June update – there are some meaty topics in this one which might be useful discussion points for long journeys in the van or those times when you need to distract your trip-mates from your puffing and panting up a Tararua hill.

Re-thinking the WTMC Journal

The committee has recently been discussing the future of the WTMC Journal. Last year we moved to an online journal, and gave members the option to purchase a printed copy. About 40 of our 600+ members purchased a hard copy, and a similar number have viewed the online version. This means the estimated 100 hours that the Journal Editor invests in producing the publication is only being appreciated by 10-15% of our membership. This is pretty disheartening both for the Journal Editor and all the people who’ve taken the time to write a story and supply photos.

In the short-term, the committee has decided to move the journal to a biennial publication, so there won’t be one for 2018/19. We’re not sure what to do in the longer term – most of us feel pretty sad about the prospect of losing the journal altogether – we need a means of recording the highlights of a year with WTMC which captures members attention. We would like your views and ideas – please pass on your feedback to any committee member.

Please be nice to each other people!

This is a friendly reminder that “the club has zero tolerance for bullying or harassing behaviour in any club-related activities, including club trips, social events, volunteer work or any other club organised activity, as well as the volunteer work involved in running the club. All members of the club and individuals who participate in club activities are expected to treat one another with respect and dignity.”

That comes straight from our Bullying & Harassment Policy and I’m drawing your attention to it this month for various reasons that have required a proportion of my “President hours” lately. Suffice to say, bullying or harassing behaviour is not ok – it does not belong in WTMC. WTMC prides itself on the relaxed and informal atmosphere in which members participate in club activities and volunteer their time and effort to run the club. This is an environment built on respect and trust, and each of us as club members has a responsibility maintain this.

Leader training – with FMC

We have agreed to help FMC run some leader training for clubs in the Wellington region over the next year or so. Smaller clubs often don’t have the capacity to run their own leader training like WTMC do, so this is one way we as a larger club can contribute to the wider tramping community. It’s a win-win as we’ll also benefit by developing our leadership skills too.

Thanks to Tony and Matt who have already said they will help with this initiative. If you would also like to help then please contact who will be in touch as plans progress.

Trip sign-up process

Just a reminder about the trip sign-up process as I’ve had some feedback lately that it’s not always clear especially to newer members. There are two ways to sign up to a trip:

  1. Put your name down on the trip sheet at club on a Wednesday night 7-7:30pm. Trip sheets are usually available about six weeks ahead of the trip date, and sign-up closes either two (for North Island trips) or three weeks (for South Island trips) before the trip.
  2. Contact the leader directly any time after the trip schedule is made available, either by email or phone. Contact details are available on the printed version of the trip schedule, on the trip sign-up sheet, or via the Chief Guide. To protect members’ privacy, we don’t make these details available online.

The leader has the freedom to manage sign-up for their trip however works for them. Some leaders will happily keep a list of people who have emailed them, others will request you go along to club to put your name down in person. Some will take sign-ups months in advance, others prefer to wait until the trip sheet is available at club. It’s also up to the leader who they take on their trip. Signing up for a trip indicates your commitment to it, but it doesn’t guarantee you a place – the trip might be oversubscribed, require a certain skillset or the leader might not feel comfortable having you on the trip for whatever reason.


  • Entries are now open for the WTMC Photography Competition. Everyone is encouraged to submit their best shots from recent tramping trips and the winners will be put forward to represent WTMC in the National FMC competition. Entries close 31st July.         
  • TTC Centenary tramp to Mt Kaukau takes place this Sunday 30th June. WTMC members are invited to attend this celebratory event. See the TTC website for more details.
  • WTMC, along with VUTMC, are once again sponsoring bringing the NZ Mountain Film Festival National Tour to Wellington. There are two different programmes, on Mon 5th and Mon 12th August, both in the Memorial Theatre at the Victoria University Kelburn Campus. Tickets are on sale here. Please publicise the event to everyone you know – the funds we raise from this go straight to scholarships for our members. Megan S will be needing some volunteers to help on the nights so let her know if you are willing and available.
  • Remember we have a couple of bothy-bag style mountain shelters available from the gear cupboard. They are temporary/emergency shelters for four-to-six people, which can best be described as a big orange mushroom that the whole group can huddle under to keep warm. They are great for day trips with exposed tops or perhaps alpine travel.
  • The club has a dehydrator available for members to hire. Winter is the perfect time to prep all those dehy meals for long summer trips! Contact if you want to book it.

My June has involved two Tararua hut-bagging day walks, one successful and one less so (at least in terms of hut-bagging). Eastern Hutt Hut will still be there for me to visit another time – the short daylight hours at this time of year and trying to avoid the large group spending too much time in the cold river meant deciding to turn around before we reached the hut was easy. The sad end to the recent search for a missing tramper in the Tararua ranges – in which many WTMC members were involved as LandSAR volunteers – is a timely reminder to us all to look after ourselves and each other when we’re out in the hills.

Take care and enjoy your winter adventures!


WTMC President

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