Barron Flat and the Kill Devil

I can’t get enough of mountain biking at the moment. One of the coolest things about Nelson is that the riding is amazing year-round. I’ve been night riding a couple of times a week over winter, mostly pretty casual trails with friends. To celebrate eight consecutive Thursday nights of Involution a few of us headed to the Kill Devil Trail in the Kahurangi National Park.

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Tapuae-o-Uenuku and the Clarence

Tapuae-o-Uenuku, affectionately known to most Kiwis as ‘Tappy’, is the highest peak in New Zealand outside of the Southern Alps. It towers 2885m above sea level just North of Kaikoura. I’d floated past it on the Clarence River a couple of times and always found myself gazing longingly at the scree slopes and jagged pile of rocks towering above me. This weekend I finally stood on the summit, with my packraft!

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The quintessential Fiordland journey: Manapouri to Foveaux Strait by foot and packraft

On Christmas Eve we set off from the West Arm of Lake Manapouri with around a weeks’ worth of food, packrafting and tramping gear, a bunch of TOPO maps and loose plans to make it to Foveaux Strait. We had a small box of food delivered to Lake Roe Hut on the Dusky Track to pick on the way. For two weeks we linked together rivers, Fiords, lakes, some trails and a few different mountain ranges to make it to the Southern Ocean. 
Continue reading “The quintessential Fiordland journey: Manapouri to Foveaux Strait by foot and packraft”

Four Kiwi women prepare to traverse the Southern Alps in New Zealand

Four kiwi women are currently preparing for a month-long traverse of the Southern Alps, from Arthur’s Pass to Mount Cook. The team is comprised of Dulkara Martig, Ingrid Booiman, Tara Mulvany and Anna Loomes. They are all aged between 27 and 29 and have spent the majority of the last 10 years working within the outdoor industry.

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Fiordland trip with a stranger

A 10 day wilderness trip in Aspiring and Fiordland National Parks.

While driving down the West Coast I fill Jake in on the details. “I’ve never actually met Tara but people say we’ll get along well. We’ve talked about doing a trip together in Central Asia sometime. If we enjoy this trip then at least we’ll know if a longer mission together is a smart idea.” Continue reading “Fiordland trip with a stranger”

Inaugral packrafting meet-up in New Zealand

I bought my first packraft in late 2013 and it proved almost impossible to find anyone else to on on trips with. I bought a second packraft to drag mates out, then set up a Facebook group to try and find more people, and finally, announced to the packrafting community that I’d host the first official packrafting meet-up in New Zealand.

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Packrafting: a new era of river exploration

Note: this article was published in the NZOIA (New Zealand Outdoor Instructors Association) Quarterly publication in July 2015.

A year and a half ago if you’d asked me about packrafting I would have visualised people floating down rivers in cheap warehouse duckies with bike helmets. But times have changed. A modern-day packraft is the ultimate tool for amphibious exploration and I reckon New Zealand is one of the best places on the planet for it. Here’s an insight into what packrafting is all about. Continue reading “Packrafting: a new era of river exploration”