President’s report May 2020

I hope you’re all staying safe and well, and are able to get out on some tracks now that we’re at Level 2.

I’ve managed a few walks on my local steps, some with my pack and my trusty boots, and including a wonderful morning recently around the Zealandia Fenceline with two other club members.

I know many of you have been thinking about  COVID-19 and what the various levels mean for the club. At this stage we’re encouraging day trips but still considering when (and how) we’ll be able to do overnight trips again. The day trips are a great intro for new members and (for members like me) useful training with enjoyable company. If you’re interested (or at least willing) to lead some more, email Matt at .

Paua Hut is open for bookings for people in pre-existing groups. The Lodge Sub-Committee is still talking through when the Lodge will re-open, and the logistics of when it does. Keep an eye on the website and the WTMC Facebook page for any changes.

We’ve modified our club nights to run online presentations some Wednesday evenings. A big thank you to Byron, Juan and Aimee – and to the presenters (Henry, Rasmus and Katja) for excellent and inspiring talks. We’re keen to continue these – anyone happy to do online presentations please email Byron () or Aimee ().

The current restrictions are also a good time to refresh your various skills. There’s plenty of info online to learn, brush up or build on navigation, map reading, first aid, weather reading, knots and other skills. The Facebook page has some useful links. Any other good courses you’d recommend, please post there or on the Forum.

Since this is my first report since taking on the role, I want to thank you all for electing me President at this challenging time. There’s so many other thanks – not least is last year’s Committee, including the  members who have recently stepped down:

  • Emily Shrosbree –President in 2018 and 2019, expertly steering the Committee and the club to its current solid position. This includes smoothly managing some difficult matters, challenges and a raft of things (I’m only starting to appreciate) that came her way.
  • Tony Gazley – a key steady presence, last year’s Vice President, and having held many other roles over the years including President. Tony on top of these roles has made other major contributions such as journal editor, leading trips, and organising and being involved in many working bees and repairs for Ruapehu Lodge and Paua Hut.
  • Heather Garven – Secretary extraordinary – meticulous, accurate, efficient and well-considered, with Minutes often up within hours of the meeting. Behind the scenes, Heather consistently advocated to ensure the best outcomes for members.
  • Rene Auer – Transport Officer for many years. Most members aside from leaders would have little appreciation of how many hours, and how much complexity, Rene has project managed week after week to make sure members get to and from trips.
  • Sumudu Jayalath– regularly working behind the scenes as Communications Officer over the past few years, managing the Facebook page, helping promote events and various other club communications, while also stepping into other roles when we’re on holidays.
  • George Bowman – General Committee rep in 2019. Van cleaning, helping out with baiting logistics, and helping out with whatever else needs doing.

I also want to recognise and thank all our leaders last year, as well as those who’ve had a key role in training or mentoring and I know will continue to do so. Not least of which are (forgive me if I forgot someone – and let me know):  Henry Fisher, Gareth Robinson, Kevin Cole, Richard House, Matt Conway and Tony Gazley.

As many have said before, WTMC really is a collection of volunteers that together have enabled many amazing trips, club nights and a lot more. Some examples including helping out on the door and with trip planning, cleaning the van, baiting work, Lodge and Paua Hut maintenance, and writing trip reports.

Thanks to you all. I’m very excited about the new Committee and its collective capability (a great mix of solid club and committee experience and fresh perspectives). I’m pleased we’ve had our vacant roles recently filled. You can find out more about your current Committee, including a little bit about each of us on the club web-page. 

Email any of us if you want more details about who we are and what our outdoor passions are.
Any feedback on the above, or any other ideas, please email me at , or any of the other club members.

I’m off to experience some more of the South Island now to do a little bit of tramping, and find some more (new) steps to train on. 

Stay healthy and well in body and mind,


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