President’s Column – July 2022

The Club continues to do well and I’ve continued with meeting my target of participating in at least one Club trip per month.  Monique led a group of us to the Kaweka Forest Park over the Matariki weekend where we enjoyed some great tramping country, lovely bush, beautiful streams, excellent views of snow clad mountains and views over the Hawkes Bay.  We also had cosy huts, great company and splendid meals.  In total we knocked off two huts and three bivvies.  We did have an absolutely freezing night camping at the Makahu road-end but generally had good weather.  Again, taking part in this very well organised and run tramp reminded of all the fantastic aspects of our Club and why we are such a great organisation to belong to.

Header picture: Tony at Kaweka Flats Biv, Kaweka Forest Park.


The week of 19-25 June was National Volunteer Week and this got me thinking about our Club and the many many people who help out with the running of the Club.

Over the last few months a number of people have approached me at meetings or via email expressing their interest in volunteering for the Club.  People have volunteered to help with the 75th anniversary, to host Club meetings, to help in the gear room and to help maintain the Club van.   Plus we have the very many people who are leading trips, serving on the Committee, arranging guest speakers and maintaining and running the Lodge and Paua hut.  

This has been very pleasing for me and indicates that people value our Club and what we do.  People offering to help indicates to me that the Club is doing well and that people want to be part of this and to contribute to the continuing success of the Club.  The large number of volunteers and the many new people helping really gives me a boost and reassures me that we can continue to make the Club an organisation that people want to belong to and participate in.  I also think this is part of ensuring the Club will continue to function well in the future.

Of course in an organisation with nearly 600 members and trips each weekend there are always jobs to be done so if you would like to contribute to the Club please get in touch.  We are particularly looking for some more people to help out with the gear room at the moment and to help with the 75th anniversary.

Volunteering is a two way street : it helps the organisations we support with our time, effort, knowledge and skills but it also provides us with social networks, a sense of satisfaction in contributing to a greater purpose, teaches us skills and helps us develop personally.  I am certainly learning new things and skills as President. 

Committee Activities

An organisation with nearly 600 members takes a great deal of work to keep running smoothly.  The Committee has a number of projects underway, such as looking at the membership categories and fees, the 75th anniversary and updating the various governance documents. 

We are also looking at how we can ensure the long-term financial viability of the Club and the Lodge.  There is a proposal to invest some Club funds into a managed fund (similar to a Kiwisaver fund) so that over the long-term the Club can make a better return on some of its funds.  The value of managed funds varies with the market but over the long-term these funds do increase in value.  Further down the track, as the fund increases, some money would be withdrawn to help pay for maintenance on the Lodge.  Not all Club funds would be invested in this way and we would only be investing in an ethical fund and with a balanced or conservative risk profile.  I’m currently trying to consider all of the implications of this type of investment on the wider Club and have been taking advice from accountants, financial advisors and the FMC.

Another thought to help ensure the long-term financial viability of the Lodge is having an extra subscription fee for the Lodge or having an allocated proportion of the annual membership fee going towards the Lodge.  The Lodge sub-committee has only just started to consider this and there will have to be further thought and discussion about this and the implications on the Lodge and wider Club.  No decisions about this have been made yet but all options must be considered as part of prudent management of the Lodge and the Club.

Monique’s medium group at Middle Hill hut, Kaweka Forest Park.

75th Anniversary

Meredith and Jo are working hard on the arrangements for the Club’s 75th anniversary.  This will be held over the weekend of 4-6 November and we will be having a celebratory dinner, an easy overnight tramp to Paua hut and then a BBQ at the Catchpool Centre in the Remutaka Forest Park.  We are looking for a few more people to help with the running of this weekend.  If you would like to help or register your interest for anniversary activities please contact :

Recent Trips

Despite some poor weather nine trips went ahead during June with 40 people in total participating.  The long weekends of June allowed the Club to run some trips further afield.  There were very successful tramps to Lake Chalice, the Te Urewera area and also to the Kaweka Forest Park.  Despite cold conditions at times all participants had a fine time and enjoyed the chance to see some different parts of the country.  We are lucky that we have the skilled and experienced people in our Club and the necessary equipment (van, PLBs, billies, tent flies, first-aid kits) so we can run these more ambitious tramps.

Upcoming Trips

As usual there is an excellent schedule of tramps and mountaineering activities coming up this month.  There is a good mixture of day trips and weekend tramps along with the snowcraft course which is scheduled for the end of July.  We have trips planned from near (Kaitoke, Belmont Regional Park, Tararua Forest Park) to further afield (Ruahine Forest Park, Whanganui National Park, and in the Kaikoura area).  I really urge you to sign-up for tramps or other activities.  We are so lucky that we have such committed people who are willing to lead trips to all sorts of places and of varying durations – please sign-up to support these leaders and to support the Club.

Closing Comments

Even though the weather is a bit colder now we are into winter there are still plenty of trips to sign-up for.  I really urge you to sign-up for something so you can enjoy what the Club provides.  I have said this before but the more you put into the Club you more you will get out of it. 

See you in the hills or at a meeting and if you have any comments please contact me :


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