From the President – June 2024

Kia ora,

This article provides general club updates including:

  • Committee updates: Committee vacancies, FMC backcountry magazines
  • Other Club updates: winter at the Lodge etc
  • Coming up in July

Ngā mihi


The Easy/Medium trip to Cascade Hut over the weekend of 21-23 June was the club’s first to that Hut via the Hinemaiaia track.  Overall, the group found it a very pleasing and scenic track with stunningly clear streams and rivers. The “cascades” near the Hut on the Tauranga Taupo river were beautiful! This would be a great trip to do in the summer months, with lots of swimming holes along the way. (Sara H)

From the Committee


We are posting FMC magazines in the mail for the last time this quarter. Going forward, Members who have opted in to get a FMC Backcountry magazine will need to pick it up from the Club’s gear room – any Wednesday between 7-7.30pm. This change is occuring due to skyrocketing mailing costs that have more than tripled in the last 12-18 months, which is not sustainable. Mailing costs went from $260 (March 2023) to $760-$840 per quarter (or from approx $1,000 pa up to $3,200pa). To put these figures into context, $3,200 is equivalent to about 6 months of our TTC hall hire fees, or twice the annual cost of our membership system (HelloClub). If you wish to receive the magazine at home, you can sign up to the D2U option through FMC directly ($20). FMC discount cards will continue to be mailed out annually to Club members.


Due to a change of circumstances our Secretary Elizabeth will stand down at the end of July. The Chief Guide role remains vacant, and I am also stepping down from the President role. If you are interested in taking on a role on the Committee, please get in touch with Andrew at . Application are open until the roles are filled, people who expressed interest before 7 July will be considered for appointment at the 10 July Committee meeting .


With the new Constitution being endorsed by Members at the last AGM, we are gearing up towards re-registration. There are a few bits and pieces we need to work through still, including ensuring some of our processes match new requirements, and getting a few more formal decisions from all Members including to formally re-register. We will keep you updated of progress, if you are interested in supporting this process please email .


The Committee has reviewed the first Club Budget, setting out our intended spendings for the 2024-25 financial years for each area of the Club (administration, activities/tramps, lodge and paua hut). This will be a useful tool to ensure we are staying on track and spending money where it makes a difference.


A couple of months ago we indicated a transition away from Paypal for lodge and paua hut bookings. This is in progress as we are working through practical implementation details. To avoid disruption to winter season bookings we are considering delaying implementation by a few months.


The next trip schedule will be published online early in July, and will include both tramping and mountaineering trips. Thank you to all the volunteers who helped put this together by providing ideas of trips, detailing the list for uploading it on the website, calculating trip costs and preparing sign up forms. If you are reading this and would like to help with the next schedule, please email . Thanks to everyone who also put their hand up to lead trips!


We are trialing a slightly different approach to alpine trip sign-ups this year. Participants will be required to complete two types of forms:

  • A 2024 season registration form, which will include all information about participant skills and experience for the season. This will be shared with all alpine trip leaders to organise Club trips.
  • An online sign up form for each alpine trip the participant wants to attend; where they will register their interest and be made aware of route and risks + experience, skills and gear required for each trip.

We are hoping this will streamline the process and avoid having to answer the same questions multiple times, while still having the details required to assess participants and organise safe alpine trips.


With the help of others, Monique ran a very successful trip leaders workshop on 19 June. The group completed a range of exercises and activities, covering various aspects of leading a trip: from preparation to managing potential issues and challenges that can arise before or during a trip. There was a great turn out and some attendees already signed up to lead a trip on the next schedule!


We always need help with bits and pieces. In particular, we are hoping to find a few more volunteers to help on Wednesday evenings, with Club nights and gear pick up/drop off. Both tasks run on a roster basis with other volunteers – you can sign up in the roster at the dates that work for you. For more information please email Sam at .

Over King’s birthday weekend the EM group led by Cate tackled the Inland Track, in Abel Tasman Park.
Stunning views, full huts, and the highlight: all the mushrooms of the rainbow! (credit: Alice).

King’s Birthday M group: Ellis Hut and Twins” turned into “Fenella hut and Kākāpō peak”. An unexpected highlight was finding party hats at the hut and channelling our inner unicorn spirits on the summit, as we enjoyed views of Kahurangi, Richmond Range, and even Taranaki and the Tararuas in the distance. Add an unreasonable number of doughnuts and a couple of card games: a successful weekend.

Lodge Updates


The lodge is ready for the winter season! Bookings are open and latest updates are available on the Ruapehu Lodge facebook page . This weekend is the last weekend at summer rates before winter rates apply. Winter is well on its way and many of our Members will be eager to hit the slopes.

Key dates:

  • Sightseeing and Sledding: 1 June – 27 October,
  • Happy Valley: 27 June – 13 October,
  • Upper Mountain: 13 July – 27 October, opening terrain as snow conditions allow.


In line with views from the Lodge Sub-Committee, the Committee has agreed to downgrade our Lodge insurance contract from replacement insurance to indemnity only. There are a number of factors that led to this decision, including high insurance costs, uncertainty about our ability to rebuild should the lodge accidentally be destroyed, and potential options to collaborate with other Clubs and consolidate efforts to maintain access to Club lodges on the mountain into the future. The change will take into effect at the end of July when our insurance contract renews and will enable us to make substantial savings which can be redirected towards the Lodge.

Coming up next

Check the trip schedule for upcoming club trips

3 June – WTMC Talks: Hypothermia – know your facts

17 July – NZAC Wellington & WTMC Social: Life Flight Fundraiser Quiz

MF: Field-Kime-Elder-Renata-Waiotauru hut: It’s not often you get to do your first trip lead, get a magical snowy southern crossing AND end up on a ridgeline at night and just happen to capture a once in a lifetime Aurora event. The KP index was nearly 9 and we got to see a sky made of pink beams on the renata ridgeline about an hour from Renata hut. (Lynsey)

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