Adventure Magazine

Issue 230, February/March 2022

Issue 230, February/March 2022


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adventure<br />

where actions speak louder than words<br />

ISSUE 230<br />

FEB/MAR 2022<br />

NZ $10.90 incl. GST<br />

welcome<br />

20<br />


Sleep in,<br />

when you’re out.<br />




This summer we have refreshed our sleeping bag range to introduce<br />

new fabrics and fill, and to consolidate details like shape and fit.<br />

We’ve also filled a few gaps to cater to a broader spectrum of users.<br />

You’ll notice exciting additions like a lightweight range (including<br />

the zipperless Firefly 200), as well as a better-rounded synthetic<br />

offering. Tested out in the field by our ambassadors, we’re proud to<br />

present a range that is stronger than ever.<br />


We’ve simplified sleeping bag sizes and shapes across the range so<br />

it’s easier to find the perfect bag for your adventure. More bags in<br />

the range come in a women’s specific fit where the insulation is redistributed<br />

across the top to provide better warmth.<br />


• Wear-and-walk footbox<br />

• Zipperless option<br />


Our commitment to designing better is reflected throughout the<br />

range. Our most technical down sleeping bags feature recycled<br />

nylon outers, and Pertex ® Y Fuse technology increases performance<br />

and durability without increasing weight. The new synthetic bags<br />

are filled with 100% recycled polyester insulation, and across the<br />

board we’ve added more bluesign ® certified fabrics too.<br />

• Sleeping mat attachments<br />

• Internal pockets<br />

• Climbing tie-in<br />

From experienced mountaineers to first time campers, we’ve got the perfect sleeping bag for you.


SERAC 1000<br />

-10°C<br />


1000<br />

DRAGONFLY 400/600<br />

-3°C<br />


600<br />

FIREFLY 200<br />

7°C<br />


200<br />


AZURE 500/700<br />

-4°C<br />


700<br />

ESCAPADE 150/350/500/700<br />

-3°C<br />


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DUSK 400<br />

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ASPIRE 360/KIDS 270<br />

-3 ° C<br />


360<br />

ROAM 200/KIDS 160<br />

5 ° C<br />


200<br />

SCAN ME!<br />

Learn more about each bag’s<br />

features with one of our<br />

equipment designers.<br />





The first issue of 2022<br />

equip<br />

yourself!<br />

2022 stretches out before us but it’s a road with a lot more turns and a few<br />

blind corners than we are used to. Life used to be so much more straight<br />

forward. You could plan to travel, to go to events and do activities but now<br />

there is a shadow cast by the last two years. It’s not a case of ‘no you can’t<br />

plan anything’, but we have all got used to the uncertainty that possibly Delta,<br />

Omicron or a zombie apocalypse will arrive and turn those plans upside down.<br />

But I do believe that there is value in the lack of certainty. Possibly, it makes us<br />

all a little more spontaneous. We are hesitant to book that ski trip to Canada in<br />

six months’ time, but we can make plans three weeks out to fly to Queenstown<br />

or visit the smaller club fields on a whim, our focus is more short term and with<br />

those short-term plans comes spontaneity.<br />

It is only our generation that got used to flying to Fiji fishing for the weekend<br />

or booking surf trips to Australia as a big swell approached. Now with those<br />

destinations that require more planning, that are more exposed and are at risk<br />

to the winds of change you can see people investing in that which they can<br />

control and that’s what’s local.<br />

Hopefully, 2022 will see the end of the covid reign and fingers crossed we can<br />

return to a more structured, planned way of life. But if not, if that specter still<br />

looms then we should count all our blessing and celebrate, in that we live is<br />

such an amazing country with so much to offer.<br />

Every issue of <strong>Adventure</strong> is full cover to cover with places to go, things to<br />

see and activities to do. Don’t hold your breath in 2022, waiting for Covid to<br />

vanish and our boarders to swing wide, because they might not. And if you are<br />

uncertain about planning then invest in spontaneity. Be ready to try that new<br />

activity, visits that new place or simply be prepared to enjoy something… just<br />

on a whim.<br />

Steve Dickinson - Editor<br />

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page 12<br />

#230<br />

contents<br />

Image compliments Bike it Now! Self portrait<br />

Image by David Nogales Tarragó<br />

page 22<br />

page 54<br />

12//A Land of Fire and Ice<br />

kayaking in Iceland<br />

22//Scree Slope from Hell<br />

descent into Crow Valley<br />

30//From Sea to Shining Sea<br />

an American journey<br />

34//Eileen Gu<br />

finding the balance<br />

38//Whakapapaiti Valley Track<br />

what a difference a day makes<br />

46//The Longest Fishing <strong>Adventure</strong> Ever<br />

80 days straight<br />

50//K2 in Winter<br />

making history<br />

54//Central Otago<br />

cycle trails<br />

58//Ghost Diving NZ<br />

cleaning up Fiordland<br />

62//Legendary Mackenzie<br />

your 2022 adventure bucket list<br />

86//Island Escapes<br />

Rarotonga<br />

Vanuatu<br />

plus<br />

72. gear guides<br />

96. active adventure<br />


www.facebook.com/adventuremagnz<br />

adventuremagazine<br />

www.adventuremagazine.co.nz<br />

Nzadventuremag<br />



your <strong>Adventure</strong> starts with Us<br />

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Distributed by Outfitters 0800021732 www.outfitters.net.nz


Kiwi, Rod Hill’s image of kayaker River Mutton<br />

bursting through a rapid at Huka Falls, New<br />

Zealand, was voted the category winner by the<br />

panel of Red Bull Illume judges amid strong<br />

competition. It’s a magical moment for the<br />

photographer.<br />

“This shot was not supposed to happen. River<br />

Mutton was supposed to leave for work but<br />

decided on one last run. I had already packed<br />

my gear away by the time they walked back<br />

up from the take-out point. Once they decided<br />

being late to work was worth it, it was a mad<br />

rush back down the river with my camera. I<br />

didn't have time to get to my normal spot, so<br />

instead I tried this angle. All of a sudden, the<br />

light popped like I had never seen before.<br />

Straight away I knew this was going to work.”<br />

The shot of this bursting kayaker wins the Energy by Red Bull Photography category.<br />

© Rod Hill / Red Bull Illume<br />

It is the first time the amateur photographer,<br />

a chemistry teacher from Rotorua, has been<br />

selected in Red Bull Illume. Hill has been<br />

passionate about photography for many years<br />

on his skiing, surfing and climbing adventures<br />

and expeditions.<br />


Steve Dickinson<br />

Mob: 027 577 5014<br />

steve@pacificmedia.co.nz<br />



Lynne Dickinson<br />

design@pacificmedia.co.nz<br />


subscribe at www.pacificmedia-shop.co.nz<br />


Ovato, Ph (09) 979 3000<br />


www.adventuremagazine.co.nz<br />

www.adventuretraveller.co.nz<br />

www.adventurejobs.co.nz<br />

www.skiandsnow.co.nz<br />

@adventurevanlifenz<br />


NZ <strong>Adventure</strong> <strong>Magazine</strong> is published six times a year by:<br />

Pacific Media Ltd, P.O.Box 562<br />

Whangaparaoa, New Zealand<br />

Ph: 0275775014<br />

Email: steve@pacificmedia.co.nz<br />

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Contributions of articles and photos are welcome and must be accompanied by a stamped selfaddressed<br />

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damage which may result from any inaccuracy or omission in this publication, or from the use of<br />

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<strong>Adventure</strong> <strong>Magazine</strong><br />

Whereever we go,<br />

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a land of<br />

FIRE AND<br />

Red Bull<br />

ICECompliments<br />

Images David Nogales Tarragó<br />

Aniol Serrasolses is used to putting<br />

his whitewater kayaking skills to the<br />

test in stunning locations such as<br />

Costa Rica's Águas Bravas and the<br />

Villarrica volcano in Chile, which<br />

has appeared in <strong>Adventure</strong> last year.<br />

However, he took it to another level<br />

with an epic voyage of discovery<br />

into the wild heart of Iceland.

The land of fire and ice is home to some of the most<br />

challenging whitewater rapids and waterfalls in the world. Most<br />

are still unknown due to the almost inaccessible nature of the<br />

rivers. Serrasolses spent three weeks hiking the unforgiving<br />

terrain with a kayak on his back. Together with his team, they<br />

again pushed themselves to the limits to try and produce<br />

something extraordinary in their dream expedition.<br />

Serrasolses, 30, said: "For me, waterfalls have always been<br />

the most entertaining side of kayaking. They scare me the<br />

most, but at the same time, they provide some of the strongest<br />

sensations I've ever felt. Being in the air, flying off a waterfall.<br />

The adrenaline and the fear right before and overcoming all<br />

mental obstacles to do it and do it right. It's an exciting and<br />

gratifying process."<br />

And the result of trying to navigate previously unexplored<br />

rivers? A trip that required a lot of improvisation & agility to<br />

navigate unforeseen events, with a backdrop of spectacular<br />

scenery and images that will travel around the world.<br />

Sarasola, 34, said: "It's in nature and in the rivers where we<br />

are ourselves and feel fulfilled. I cannot think of a better place<br />

than Iceland to start over again after such a difficult year."<br />

Spaniard Serrasolses made a global name for himself with<br />

his previous dangerous projects down perilous flooded rivers<br />

in Portugal back in 2018 and over a 25-kilometre descent<br />

in Chile. His Chile project earlier in 202, which has already<br />

appeared in <strong>Adventure</strong> <strong>Magazine</strong>, saw him perform a unique<br />

kayak descent over snow-capped volcanoes, finishing up in<br />

the river with a double kickflip, a manoeuvre never achieved<br />

in this sport, and that would secure him the Top Male Rider<br />

Award at the White Water Awards 2021.<br />

Previous page: Aniol Serrassolses paddling in the Jokulsarlon<br />

Glacier, Iceland on June 2021<br />

Above: Aniol Serrassolses, Mikel Sarasola and Aleix Salvat carrying<br />

their kayaks in Fellsa river, Iceland<br />

Top Right: Aniol droping a waterfall for the Jotunn project in<br />

Kaldakvisl river, Iceland<br />

Bottom Right: Aniol carrying his kayak in Aldeyjarfoss, Iceland,<br />

waterfall in background his destination, see him take the drop on the<br />

following page<br />

Following page: Aniol takes the drop in Aldeyjarfoss, Iceland<br />





David Nogales Tarragó, the photographer on this trip...<br />

“Aniol talked to me and proposed that I join his project<br />

in Iceland with Mikel and Aleix. I haven't shot any river<br />

sports before and didn't really know about them apart<br />

from social media, but I've always been passionate<br />

about the plasticity of kayaking and I think there's no<br />

better way to get introduced to the whitewater than a<br />

Red Bull project that was focused on the exploration<br />

of new rivers and running waterfalls in Iceland, so I<br />

accepted without hesitation. We struggled finding the<br />

right river flows during the first days and scouted many<br />

places without any success. We travelled all around<br />

the island, the team knew some famous runnable<br />

spots but the main purpose of the project was to find<br />

first descents, we headed to the famous Studlagil<br />

canyon to visit the place and realised one nearby<br />

tributary river had some potential for whitewater<br />

kayaking. We spent the night close to the spot and<br />

the next day hiked for several hours up the put in of<br />

the river. The run worked pretty well and there was<br />

this waterfall at the end after a really close seal launch<br />

move (sliding from the rock) that gave no time to react.<br />

On spots of this kind it is a one chance shot, because<br />

it is definitely too aggressive to repeat it many times,<br />

so you have to make sure you don't miss the shot.<br />

While Aniol was getting ready I already had the shot<br />

on my mind and started testing settings and frames so<br />

there's no place for mistakes once he's dropping.”<br />

Right: Aniol Serrassolses droping a waterfall in Studlahil,<br />

Iceland<br />

Following page: Aniol Serrasolses on a sequence of 3<br />

consecutive waterfalls in the Keldus river in Iceland<br />




*<br />

Descent into Crow Valley<br />



By Eric Skilling<br />


We knew the first leg of the overnight trip to Crow Hut in Arthurs Pass National Park<br />

was going to be a challenging day. We mistakenly believed the 1.1km climb to the top<br />

of Avalanche Peak (1833m) would be the pinnacle of the day. How wrong we were. The<br />

700-metre descent off the ridges approaching Mt Rolleston and down the scree slope to<br />

Crow Valley will go down as one of the most demoralising, exhausting and gut-busting<br />

tramping experiences I have endured in a long, long time.<br />

Even though it was January with its long daylight hours, we had agreed to an early start.<br />

So, the shadows were long as the team stepped into the shady mountain beech forest with<br />

just a hint of a cool morning breeze. Morale was high. There was even banter. Absolutely<br />

no hint of the battered and bruised bodies that would collapse next to the Crow River some<br />

8-hours later.<br />


Scott’s track up to Avalanche Peak is a steep and rocky but<br />

easily accessible path from Arthurs Pass village. Rising the<br />

1.1km over 2.5km, this is no walk in the park especially with an<br />

overnight pack on your back. But it also offers plenty to enjoy as<br />

you try to keep your heart rate in check.<br />

Within the first half-hour you get to take in priceless views<br />

eastwards to the Temple Basin ski field and the ice-splattered<br />

summits of Stuart, Phipps and Blimit, all over 1900m. Behind<br />

us Arthurs Pass village became more and more like a miniature<br />

kitset as we climbed. Kea were calling across to each other<br />

as they searched for breakfast amongst the trees and shrubs.<br />

The sound of water cascading down the 130 metre Devils<br />

Punchbowl waterfall across the valley ebbed and flowed for the<br />

first hour or so, muted by the trees, the distance and the breeze.<br />

At 1300 metres we emerged out of the bush-line and onto a<br />

tussock covered ridge littered with flowering Mount Cook Lily,<br />

daisies and other alpine plants, and wide vistas from Otira to<br />

Waimakariri. The dark jagged rocks of Mt Rolleston (2275m)<br />

began to dominate the horizon to the north-west.<br />

There are plenty of false tops to clamber over before the path<br />

became massive ice-shattered greywacke boulders, and later<br />

became the crumbly, black argillite which covers the summit.<br />

Despite the warnings about the steep drop-offs along the path<br />

even the most cautious in our party conquered these with ease,<br />

although I admit they could cause some issues in high winds<br />

and rain. It had taken us less than four hours to conquer the<br />

peak and in perfect time and perfect place to enjoy some wellearned<br />

lunch as well as the reward of some 6-star scenery.<br />

Southwards and way below the Crow River courses its way<br />

down a steep, well forested valley scarred with rockslides.<br />

Further south we got a glimpse of the Waimakariri with its<br />

spectacularly flat and wide steep-sided glacial valley. To the<br />

north and east are full views of the Arthurs Pass peaks, Otira<br />

Gorge and the very thin, fragile looking strip of State Highway<br />

73 making its precarious way to Greymouth and the West<br />

Coast.<br />

Northwest, the skyline is dominated by the jagged, black rock<br />

of Mt Rolleston rising another 450 metres above us, it’s lower<br />

faces softened by the bright white of the Crow and Rolleston<br />

glaciers. Fine silver ribbons marked streams of ice-melt<br />

plummeting off the bluffs, making their way to become the Crow<br />

River. We had no idea how much we would get to enjoy gulping<br />

down those icy-cold ancient waters later that afternoon when we<br />

eventually reached the Crow River.<br />

Our leaders had given us plenty of advice about choosing the<br />

right scree slope to descend. We were given dire warnings of<br />

deadly bluffs and the risk of serious and sometimes fatal injuries<br />

for those who get it wrong. Fortunately, we had great visibility,<br />

light winds and plenty of time. There was also still a bit of that<br />

buzz in the group after reaching the summit.<br />

Spirits were high as we scrambled down a small scree slope to<br />

the south of the peak, just as the day began to warm up. From<br />

here the trail followed the ridge NNW towards Mt Rolleston. A<br />

shout-out is due to those people who gathered all those rocks<br />

and made up the arrows pointing along the ridge – reassuring<br />

us we were not lost. On our left and several hundred metres<br />

below, we noticed the tiny red roof of Crow Hut sitting in a<br />

clearing alongside the river. I remember thinking the site looked<br />

like an ideal spot for pitching a tent later that evening.<br />

After what seemed like an age, we had covered the 1.5km from<br />

Avalanche Peak and were staring down the 700-metre scree<br />

slope, with no idea that it was to become our temporary little<br />

Previous Page: Our party of 7 on Avalanche Peak, Mt Rolleston in the backgound.<br />

Above: Reaching for the top as the day started to warm up.<br />

Right: Emerging from the treeline on Scotts Track with Otira gorge in the distance.<br />



hell for the next hour-and-quite-a-bit.<br />

We ticked off all the pointers to mark the<br />

beginning of the descent: the scree slope<br />

slid all the way to the valley floor, the full<br />

Devils Punchbowl falls visible behind us<br />

and a steep ridge to Mt Rolleston on our<br />

right, and we were at 1658m- Tick.<br />

For some reason we all seemed reluctant<br />

to start. Perhaps some primeval instinct<br />

was warning us against this venture. It<br />

just didn’t look that easy. With technique<br />

fresh in my mind – pole out, lean slightly<br />

forward, and dig the heels in, I stepped off<br />

onto the loose fist-sized rocks.<br />

Within seconds I was losing control. This<br />

was no scoria mound of Mt Ngauruhoe<br />

or the slightly more difficult Mt Taranaki,<br />

where one step can send you over a<br />

metre down the slope. Instead of the<br />

rounded stones of the volcanoes, these<br />

were ice-shattered rocks ranging in size<br />

from dust to boulders over a metre long,<br />

all with flat faces and sharp edges. Most<br />

of the rocks on the surface were fist sized<br />

but hidden underneath the surface were<br />

larger flat rocks which acted like loose<br />

platforms for the smaller rocks to slide<br />

randomly, leaving you to guess how far<br />

each step would take you.<br />

Every step was a series of uncontrolled,<br />

unpredictable slides and recoveries.<br />

Behind me I could hear others following<br />

tentatively, so I felt the need to keep<br />

going. Within a few minutes our energetic<br />

leader slipped, staggered and skidded<br />

past me, clearly with very little respect<br />

for his well-being. Half an hour later, after<br />

uncountable near falls and recoveries,<br />

I had to stop. I was exhausted. My abs<br />

and shoulders ached from the tension of<br />

endless, continuous bracing, waiting for<br />

a slip to become a fall onto those jagged<br />

rocks. My mouth and eyes were full of fine<br />

dust and the temperature seemed to have<br />

risen another 10 degrees as the overhead<br />

sun beat down on us, radiating heat off<br />

the scree slope and onto sun-burnt faces.<br />

Swivelling around, I had the crushing<br />

realisation that the top was still a lot<br />

closer than the valley floor. I slumped

down, pulled out my water bottle and<br />

emptied what little was left. I gave<br />

myself a little pep talk and stood up,<br />

slid sideways, toppled forward onto<br />

the rocks, rolled over on my pack,<br />

back onto my chest and slid another<br />

few feet down the slope. I lay there<br />

for a few seconds. Bit of pain in my<br />

forearm and shin, otherwise intact.<br />

Phew! I dragged away the rocks that<br />

had slid over my walking pole and<br />

hoped some witness had at least<br />

enjoyed a laugh.<br />

An hour-and-a-half later, seven<br />

sweaty, sunburnt, stiff and sore<br />

trampers were sitting next to the<br />

Crow River, having guzzled serious<br />

quantities of icy-cold water from the<br />

glacial stream. One broken walking<br />

pole but otherwise all largely intact.<br />

Amazing.<br />

After making our way, jelly-legs and<br />

all, over more but larger boulders<br />

along the valley floor, we filed into the<br />

hut. Pitching a tent was as likely as<br />

finding a working espresso machine<br />

and a barista waiting in the dunny. It<br />

had taken us nearly 9 hours to cover<br />

less than 13km. And the effort was<br />

clear to see.<br />

Then came the next challenge –<br />

trying to stay awake long enough for<br />

the light to fade. We lost that battle.<br />

After finishing one of the tastiest<br />

Backcountry Venison Risotto’s ever<br />

made, I made short work of the Apple<br />

Pie I keep in reserve, but even a<br />

coffee couldn’t keep me awake. But<br />

hey, this is the Southern Alps, the<br />

summer solstice was a few weeks<br />

past, and the sun does set a little later<br />

in the day here…. doesn’t it?<br />

Next day we made our way to<br />

Klondyke corner, negotiating the<br />

various braids of the Waimakariri<br />

more times than we intended but<br />

arrived back in Arthurs Pass feeling<br />

like we had done good – challenged<br />

ourselves, and enjoyed another<br />

memorable experience in the<br />

company of good people.<br />

Previous Page: Heads down, poles out as we negotiated<br />

the dreaded scree slope to the Crow Valley (Photo: Colin).<br />

Top: We had the very comfortable Crow Hut to ourselves that<br />

evening.<br />

Inserts: Crossing the clear waters of the Crow river on day 2.<br />

A tranquil lunch stop next to the Waimakariri on our way out<br />

(Photo:Ilva)<br />

Bealey is the ideal location to enjoy easy access to all the natural attractions of the Arthur’s Pass National Park, with its flora and fauna, mountain tramps and walks, and the<br />

recreational pursuits of the high country including skiing, snow boarding, biking, fishing and boating. All these outdoor activities can be enjoyed without sacrificing the comforts<br />

and luxuries of accommodation, food and hospitality by staying at the 4-star Bealey Hotel.<br />

a: 12858 West Coast Road, (SH73) | e: stay@thebealeyhotel.com | p: +64 3 318 9277 | www.thebealeyhotel.com

The Old Nurses Home<br />

Guesthouse<br />

Welcome to The Old Nurses Home Guesthouse<br />

This historic renovated building, has large picturesque and peaceful grounds with off-street parking, centrally<br />

heated accommodation with single/twin/double/queen rooms (bed linen, duvets and towels supplied). One bedroom<br />

apartments are also available with a minimum 2 night stay. There is a large communal kitchen with a dining and<br />

lounge area, a conference room and four large shared bathrooms. Free wireless Wi-Fi and complimentary tea and<br />

coffee is available.<br />

Situated within the town of Reefton and with easy walking access to the town centre, we offer a wonderfully quiet<br />

place to stay. Enjoy the stunning Victoria Conservation Park with access to outstanding bush walks, historic mining<br />

sites, walking distance to the famous Inangahua River and some of the best fishing for trout in NZ. White water raft or<br />

kayak the exciting rivers in the area. Explore the myriad of challenging 4WD tracks in the hills. For mountain bikers<br />

there are a number of bike tracks located in the Reefton area. Reefton offers a perfect base for MTB riders to explore<br />

The Old Ghost Road from Lyell through the ranges to Seddonville on the West Coast.<br />

We are located just 40 minutes from the Lyell where we offer undercover, secure storage for your bikes and bike<br />

servicing is available in the town. Reefton offers visitors many activities, if you are seeking a relaxing weekend<br />

or perhaps a true West Coast adventure The Old Nurses Home Guesthouse is the perfect place to stay in Reefton.<br />

Approximate travelling times: Christchurch 3 hours, Hanmer Springs 1.5 hours, Nelson 2.45 hours, Westport 1 hour,<br />

Karamea 2.5 hours, Greymouth 1 hour, Franz Josef 3.5 hours, Picton 4 hours, Lyell 40 mins.<br />

www.reeftonaccommodation.co.nz<br />

+6437328881<br />


USA<br />

* *<br />



an American journey<br />

His name is Neal Moore. He is a storyteller and a paddler, and an adventurer. He undertook a<br />

remarkable journey of over 7,500 river and portage miles (that’s 12070.08 km) from the Columbia<br />

River in Oregon on the West Coast of America, all the way to New York City on the East Coast.<br />

To give it an antipodean comparison that is like paddling across the width of Australia three times,<br />

back to back!<br />

It took 2 years, traversing 22 rivers and waterways, touching 22 states and stopping off in over<br />

100 towns. We caught up Neal, - and asked the interesting hard questions about his epic<br />

adventure! This is his story!<br />

When did this idea come to mind<br />

– what started you out on this<br />

journey? I got the idea to connect<br />

rivers during my 2009 descent of the<br />

Mississippi River. The person who<br />

introduced me to the concept was<br />

the great paddler Dick Conant. We<br />

paddled on and off together – he<br />

was connecting rivers from near the<br />

headwaters of the Mississippi all<br />

the way to Norfolk, Virginia. In the<br />

years afterwards, I based overseas<br />

in Africa and East Asia, I unfurled<br />

the map across the table and in my<br />

mind, coming up with my own point A<br />

and point B – with the exciting idea to<br />

travel from coast to coast, from sea to<br />

shining sea.<br />

Was the trip continuous or was<br />

there breaks between rivers? The<br />

journey was continuous, following the<br />

seasons. I spent different amounts<br />

of time in various towns and cities.<br />

Sometimes it’d be an afternoon<br />

and sometimes a couple of days.<br />

In Demopolis, Alabama, along the<br />

Tombigbee, I spent an entire month,<br />

waiting out two sets of twisters and<br />

severe flooding to push through.<br />

If you could state one objective<br />

of the trip what would it be? The<br />

number one priority, or goal, was<br />

to explore connections between a<br />

nation often divided by race, class,<br />

and political stripe. Unfiltered,<br />

unadulterated, raw and exposed<br />

and real. But then, to paddle into the<br />

pandemic was a surprise.<br />

I read that you had spent a lot of<br />

your life outside of America – was<br />

that motivation to see so much<br />

of the country by canoe? After the<br />

better part of a lifetime abroad, where<br />

one explores the idea of that perfect<br />

destination with fellow travelers from<br />

all over the show, the epiphany hit<br />

me hard and strong. What if the<br />

greatest adventure of my life was in<br />

my own backyard? To explore my<br />

home country slow and low down and<br />

personal from the view of a canoe.<br />

What type of Canoe?<br />

Old Town Penobscot 16 foot Royalex<br />

(16RX)<br />

.<br />

How much of the timing of the trip<br />

was based around the weather I<br />

guess you needed to be aware of<br />

freezing cold and hurricanes? Yes,<br />

the route was designed to follow the<br />

seasons and to miss the hurricane<br />

season in the gulf.<br />

I read there was almost a tornado<br />

issue – can you tell us more about<br />

that? There was quite a bit of severe<br />

weather. Coming down the Missouri<br />

near Bismarck, North Dakota, I took<br />

cover as a severe storm blew over. It<br />

downed half the cottonwood trees in<br />

the park where I’d made camp and<br />

took the roof off a nearby farmhouse.<br />

Above left: Neal Moore in his canoe<br />

Above right: The highlight of the trip was seeing the beacon hand of the Statue of Liberty in NY Harbour<br />

Right: Laden for a two year adventure<br />



Later, along the Missouri, I found<br />

myself on the periphery two derechos<br />

(Derechos are fast-moving bands of<br />

thunderstorms with destructive winds)<br />

as they blew their way past. But they<br />

passed to either side and I was safe. The<br />

following year two sets of twisters blew<br />

their way through several states. I was<br />

with a family in downtown Demopolis<br />

at the time who had a “safe room”<br />

in their home for such occasions, so<br />

we were safe. With such storms you<br />

get severe flooding, so I had to hold<br />

up here for an entire month to wait<br />

for the flood waters to recede, twice.<br />

Later along the Kentucky River, I got a<br />

flash flood warning on my phone just<br />

before last light, followed by a severe<br />

thunderstorm warning. I slipped and<br />

slid and scrambled myself up a muddy<br />

embankment, with all the expedition gear<br />

and canoe up the hill as high as I could<br />

get. I slept like a baby through the storm<br />

and come the morning, when I zipped<br />

open the front flaps of the tent, the water<br />

was right there. It had risen at least 10<br />

feet overnight and I had been lucky not<br />

to have been washed away.<br />

How much was up stream and how<br />

much downstream? 7,500 miles total.<br />

Upstream: 2700 miles; Downstream:<br />

3963 miles; Portage: 410 miles; Flat<br />

(lakes and gulf) 666 miles. A note,<br />

the majority of “downstream” was the<br />

Missouri River (2,196 miles), the majority<br />

of which is dammed up, and thus with<br />

the wind against you a whole lot, a real<br />

challenge.<br />

Seeing the trip seemed to coincide<br />

with the Covid Pandemic did it play<br />

a major role? The Covid-19 virus<br />

really hit about a month and a half into<br />

my journey, those early days ravaging<br />

both states I was travelling between,<br />

Washington and Oregon. That we all<br />

finally understood that the pandemic<br />

was on in a very real way. And I stopped,<br />

and I reached out to trusted friends<br />

– journalists and an ex-Army Special<br />

Forces friend, who teaches the Army<br />

to this day survival and how to dive in<br />

the “wacky tides” of the Columbia River<br />

Bar. I got in touch with them and asked<br />

point blank what they thought, and the<br />

overwhelming answer reverberated<br />

in one chord – “You are in the safest<br />

possible place. And you absolutely have<br />

to keep going.”<br />

The flip side to that decision was that<br />

there was nowhere else to shelter in<br />

place. Americans were no longer able to<br />

travel back to Taiwan, Americans were<br />

not able to travel to South Africa, both<br />

places in the world where I also hang up<br />

my hat and call home. So, in essence,<br />

the journey itself -- the canoe and my<br />

tent and all of my gear -- the expedition<br />

itself became my home. And sheltering in<br />

place meant continuing the journey.<br />

Did you see a lot of wildlife – were<br />

there any dangerous encounters?<br />

There was a Grizzly bear near the top<br />

of the Continental Divide, who passed<br />

50 feet in front of me as I made my way<br />

down the mountain towards Helena,<br />

Montana. I was fall harnessed and<br />

attached to my canoe with a big shipping<br />

rope and by the time I got my snow<br />

gloves off and my camera out of my<br />

pocket, it was gone. Which made me<br />

realize had it come for me, I wouldn’t<br />

have had time to reach for the buck knife<br />

or bear spray attached to my belt.<br />

In Lake Pontchartrain at Bayou<br />

Lacombe, a giant gator made its way<br />

out of the water and towards my tent at<br />

2:30 in the morning. I woke with a start,<br />

clapped my hands in a half sleep and<br />

it didn’t stop. So, I grabbed my diving<br />

light (which is super bright) and shone it<br />

out the front of the tent, and it stopped,<br />

turned around, and walked back into<br />

the bayou. Later, on a night paddle from<br />

Deer Island near Biloxi, Miss. on the<br />

Mississippi Gulf Coast to Horn Island, a<br />

good 10 mile stretch across open water,<br />

a bull shark repeatedly rammed the<br />

canoe (three times) at last light. I knew<br />

what it was, but I still had another 7 or<br />

so miles to paddle into the dark gulf, so I<br />

blocked what had happened out, a mind<br />

over matter positive affirmation of sorts.<br />

The shark didn’t come back for me,<br />

and at twelve midnight, my open canoe<br />

pushed up onto the sands at Horn Island<br />

and I was safe.<br />

What was the best part of the trip?<br />

Seeing the beacon hand of the Statue<br />

of Liberty in NY Harbor, and the entire<br />

journey coming back to me in rapid-fire<br />

flashes, the illumination of that flame<br />

shining in every single face that I could<br />

conjure. The least of us, the best of us,<br />

the flame of liberty alive and well and<br />

burning ever so bright.<br />

Your home is in Taipei? I’ve spun the<br />

continents between Cape Town and<br />

Taipei for the past thirty years. I paid my<br />

PO Box forward for three years before<br />

embarking on this second attempt at the<br />

cross-America journey so I like to say the<br />

closest thing to a residence for me is that<br />

PO Box. With the pandemic still on and<br />

Taiwan closed down, I plan to hang my<br />

hats in America for the near future.<br />

What do you do there? I have taught<br />

English in Taiwan and reported as a<br />

freelance journalist.<br />

Is there anyone you would like<br />

to publicly thank? We talk about<br />

supported vs unsupported adventures,<br />

and I can say that I’ve been supported.<br />

By smiles and waves and warm meals<br />

and showers and well wishes. From<br />

folks across America from all walks of<br />

life, by friends out in the great big world<br />

who have cheered the expedition on<br />

from afar. I have travelled solo but I have<br />

never been alone. And for that, I’ve got<br />

to say cheers to one and all.<br />

Above left to righ: Receiving a warm welcome / The 22 rivers from sea to sea / The interesting locals you meet on the way<br />

Right: Departure from Esopus Island, the Hudson River. Photo courtesy Ranger Kevin Oldenburg (National Park Service)<br />




finding the balance<br />

Eileen Gu's ascent to become a winter-sports star<br />

has been nothing short of remarkable the last two<br />

years. In 2021, Gu burst onto the international<br />

senior winter sports scene as a 17-year-old and<br />

ripped up the record books with a rapid series of<br />

breath-taking displays that stunned the freeskiing<br />

world.<br />

After winning two gold medals and a silver medal<br />

at the 2020 Winter Youth Olympics, Gu claimed<br />

two golds and a bronze at the 2021 Winter<br />

X Games then the same again at the World<br />

Championships with her unique talent seeing her<br />

excel in big air, halfpipe and slopestyle.<br />

But just who is the 18-year-old piano playing,<br />

horse-back riding, Stanford University attending,<br />

professional model who just happens to have a<br />

supernatural gift on two skis?<br />

Gu's 2021 season, which will go down in history<br />

as she also won two gold medals and one bronze<br />

medal at the World Championships despite<br />

fracturing a finger and tearing a thumb UCL,<br />

forcing her to ski without poles for the first time.<br />

Eileen became the first rookie to win three Winter<br />

X Games medals in between, while she also<br />

became the first woman to land a forward double<br />

cork 1440.<br />

The talented teenager could have chosen any<br />

number of career paths but chose skiing having<br />

started aged three.<br />

She openly admits she lives four different lives<br />

where no second of any day is wasted, however<br />

“being a teenager and doing teenager things” is<br />

still very much part of the agenda with a joyous<br />

moment shared when she is accepted into the<br />

prestigious Stanford University as a legacy<br />

applicant.<br />

One of her many passions and interests away<br />

from the snow is modelling with a recent Met Gala<br />

appearance and first Vogue cover coming on the<br />

back of her being named the new face of lingerie<br />

brand Victoria's Secret.<br />

She adds, "Both have a lot of creative expression,<br />

take me out of my comfort zone and require a lot<br />

of self-confidence."<br />

Discover more in the Beyond the Ordinary<br />

podcast episode: Eileen Gu and Bobby Brown: a<br />

conversation between two freeski stars.<br />

Top: Eileen and her first Vogue cover<br />

Right: Showing her remarkable style<br />

Following Page: Eileen Gu skiing at Mammoth Mountain, Mammoth Lakes, CA.<br />




PARK<br />

*<br />




What a difference a day makes...<br />

Words and images by Lynne Dickinson and Vicki Knell<br />

“Unbridged river crossing - it may not be<br />

possible to cross safely when the river is<br />

high following or during rainfall.”<br />

The forecast was for clearing weather;<br />

however, it had been raining fairly steadily<br />

for the past few days and as we drove to<br />

Whakapapa Village the air was still heavy<br />

with moisture. There are two ways into<br />

Whakapapaiti Hut, either via Whakapapaiti<br />

Valley, which was the route we had<br />

planned, but also the one that required<br />

the said river crossing, or from 5km up the<br />

Bruce Road from Whakapapa Village.<br />


After chatting with the staff at the info centre at<br />

Whapakapapa Village we decided not to risk an<br />

unnecessary turn around if the river was indeed<br />

too high, and instead parked at the village and<br />

walked into the hut via the Bruce Road. We have<br />

been coming to Whakapapa to ski since we were<br />

in our teens, yet this is the first time we had both<br />

walked up the Bruce Road. It was one of those<br />

misty, cold, wet days where you couldn’t see the<br />

mountain, actually you couldn’t see very far ahead<br />

of you in any direction.<br />

From the start of the track just past scoria flat it<br />

was another 3km or so to the hut and by then<br />

the rain had stopped and the mist was lifting<br />

somewhat. Coming into the track from the upper<br />

access wasn’t what we had planned but we<br />

happily traversed across the undulating rocky<br />

terrain before climbing to the highest point on the<br />

trail. As we reached the crest, we were literally<br />

stopped dead in our tracks by the view that<br />

opened in front of us. Waterfalls cascaded down<br />

sheer cliffs from the slopes of Ruapehu into the<br />

Whakapapaiti Valley below. It was an incredible<br />

sight. We sat in awe of what was less than an<br />

hour’s walk from the place we had been visiting<br />

for over 40 years.<br />

From the crest of the trail it was another half an<br />

hour or so down a steep slope via a succession<br />

of switchbacks to the turnoff to the Whakapapaiti<br />

Valley Track and another half hour to the hut. As<br />

we dropped in elevation, the terrain changed from<br />

bare rocks to mountain beech trees that had taken<br />

hold alongside the tributaries of the Whakapapaiti<br />

Stream.<br />

It was here that the hut was located, an 18-bunk<br />

spacious serviced hut with a great fire and an<br />

even greater deck with views up towards Mt<br />

Ruapehu and the cascading waterfalls. After a<br />

relaxing lunch we headed down to check out the<br />

river, and were glad that we had chosen the upper<br />

access as we were unable to find a safe crossing.<br />

Hiking in early November, we encountered<br />

only one person on the trail and had the hut to<br />

ourselves. There was a certain freedom to having<br />

the valley all to ourselves, including a skinny dip<br />

in one of the waterfalls only minutes from the hut,<br />

secure in the fact that we wouldn’t see another<br />

person for a while yet. So, you can imagine our<br />

surprise when we woke around 5.30am to the<br />

sound of voices. Peeking out the hut door we<br />

saw two guys running past the hut, stopping for a<br />

quick stretch before taking off again. They were<br />

running the Round the Mountain Track, being<br />

picked up later in the day by their dutiful partners.<br />

Although impressed with this level of fitness and<br />

commitment, we could not help but wonder what<br />

they missed along the way by running the whole<br />

thing in one day, however, each to their own.<br />

Previous page: One of the good things about hiking in the rain was the abundant waterfalls<br />

Above: Looking out from the crest of the hill not far from Scoria Flat<br />

Top Left: Whakapapaiti Hut / Top Right: The start of the Whakapapaiti Track above Scoria Flat

Top: What a differnece a day makes<br />

Second row left to right:<br />

Always heed the warnings when it<br />

comes to river crossings<br />

Our delicious dinner, Backcountry<br />

Cuisine, Roast Chicken<br />

The faces say it all, stoked that the sun<br />

has come out and the river level had<br />

dropped so we were able to cross the<br />

river and hike out down the valley<br />

Left: The impressive Whakapapaiti<br />

Valley<br />


Although it had continued to rain overnight by morning<br />

the weather had cleared and blue skies surrounded<br />

us, highlighting the fresh dusting of snow that had<br />

fallen overnight. The day before we had made a<br />

mark on one of the rocks in the stream close to the<br />

hut so we would be able to see if the water levels<br />

had changed overnight. We were encouraged to<br />

see a drop on the rock so continued on towards the<br />

Whakapapaiti River. Prepared to turn around if we<br />

had to, we were pleased to see the river had dropped<br />

enough for a safe crossing enabling us to return to our<br />

car via the Whakapapaiti Valley Track.<br />

The Whakapapaiti Valley really is simply spectacular.<br />

The only downside of walking it in reverse is that<br />

we had to keep looking over our shoulder to take in<br />

the view behind us. The day before we had walked<br />

mainly through the volcanic rock we associate with Mt<br />

Ruapehu, but today the terrain changed regularly. Due<br />

to the heavy rain the previous days there were plenty<br />

of puddles on the marshy tussock of the valley floor.<br />

The track eventually left the tussock section of the<br />

valley and we headed into a lush beech forest where<br />

we crossed numerous bridges and streams as we<br />

made our way down the mountain. The variety of<br />

terrain was a highlight; with boardwalks, dirt tracks,<br />

river crossing and mountain forests.<br />

As we drew closer to Whakapapa Village the track<br />

split in two offering the option of heading back via<br />

Silica Rapids or keeping to the trail. We chose to<br />

leave Silica Rapids and continued down the trail back<br />

to Whakapapaiti Village, determined to return another<br />

day.<br />

Whakapapaiti Valley Track can be walked as a circuit<br />

in one day, although with so much to see and explore I<br />

would thoroughly recommend staying a night or two in<br />

the hut. It is an excellent tramp to take children into as<br />

the walk times give plenty of time for an afternoon of<br />

exploration of the streams and waterfalls near the hut.<br />

Editors Picks:<br />

The Jetboil Stash Cooking System, makes heating water and cooking your meals quick and its<br />

stashes down into a compact carry bag which is super lightweight. www.jetboil.co.nz<br />

Backcountry Cuisine meals, this hike we ate Roast Chicken for dinner and Apple and Berry Crumble<br />

for breakfast, both were delicious. www.backcountrycuisine.co.nz<br />

Macpac Dragonfly 400 sleeping bag, lightweight but super warm, great for the cold and snowy night.<br />

www.macpac.co.nz<br />

Above: Views behind us of Mt Ruapehu make walking the track simply spectacular

Featuring all-new, patented FormKnit technology, the AirZone<br />

Trek’s iconic carry system offers world-class comfort and<br />

ventilation. Whether you’re feeling the heat on dusty tracks or<br />

picking up the pace hut-to-hut, the AirZone Trek helps you keep<br />

your cool.<br />

www.rab.equipment<br />

Available now from Lowe Alpine specialist stores throughout NZ.<br />

Hunting and Fishing New Zealand stores nationwide. Auckland: Living Simply, Waikato: Trek & Travel, Equip Outdoors,<br />

BOP: Whakatane Great Outdoors, Taupo: Outdoor Attitude, Wellington: Dwights Outdoors, Motueka: Coppins Outdoors,<br />

Nelson: PackGearGo Kaikoura: Coastal Sports Christchurch: Complete Outdoors, Greymouth: Colls Sportsworld,<br />

Hokitika: Wild Outdoorsman, Wanaka: MT Outdoors, Queenstown: Small Planet, Invercargill: Southern <strong>Adventure</strong><br />

Online: dwights.co.nz, gearshop.co.nz, equipoutdoors.co.nz, outdooraction.co.nz, mtoutdoors.co.nz, completeoutdoors.co.nz,<br />

huntingandfishing.co.nz, smallplanetsports.com,trekntravel.co.nz, outfittersstore.nz<br />

Distributed by: Outfitters 0800 021732<br />


MOUNT<br />


*<br />

Reigning in<br />


To live like kings and queens<br />

is an expression we don’t<br />

often live by. But what if we<br />

did? For just a moment in<br />

time, in this season of life, we<br />

treat ourselves to something<br />

extraordinary, something<br />

phenomenal, without any<br />

special occasion as an excuse.<br />

Sky Waka Gondola<br />

Rhine of the Pacific<br />

But instead, simply fill our cups with moments that matter. Because<br />

if there’s anything we’ve learned in recent years, it is that travel,<br />

adventure, and freedom are all privileges we can’t take for granted.<br />

In the wide-open spaces of Ruapehu, between mountains, rivers,<br />

and otherworldly landscapes straight out of Hollywood movies,<br />

there’s a mix of not so ordinary experiences for the bold and the<br />

brave to go forth and conquer.<br />

Luxury time travel with a modern twist on the Rhine of the<br />

Pacific<br />

Travel back in time with Forgotten World <strong>Adventure</strong>s on a Rhine<br />

of the Pacific Tour – four days of adventure and exploration<br />

through the heart of the Whanganui River – New Zealand’s longest<br />

navigable waterway. Journey by river-boat cruise or overland and<br />

watch the history and magnificence of the river come to life as you<br />

venture off the beaten path to hidden gems, heritage sites and<br />

fantastic accommodation options to indulge in.<br />

Escape to Retaruke Country Estate<br />

Embark on a remarkable country lodge experience at Retaruke<br />

Country Estate – an all-inclusive destination that includes made<br />

to order meals, unique accommodation, and a wealth of activities<br />

at your doorstep. Set amidst 4,000 acres of farmland, bush, and<br />

streams just 8 kilometres west of National Park Village, Retaruke<br />

Country Estate offers mountain biking, horse riding, off-road<br />

adventures in an SxS, farm tours, fishing, clay bird shooting, walks,<br />

and to top it all off, a lavish soak in an outdoor hot tub filled with<br />

fresh spring water. Everything you could ever wish for in the most<br />

beautiful setting - the perfect place to bliss out but also hard to<br />

leave.<br />

Scenic helicopter tour with Blazing <strong>Adventure</strong>s<br />

Fasten your seatbelts and take your reign to the skies with a scenic<br />

helicopter tour with Blazing <strong>Adventure</strong>s. Revel in awe-inspiring,<br />

breath-taking aerial views of Ruapehu’s wonderland like you have<br />

never seen before. Soar above the Whanganui River, take in the<br />

panoramas of historic farmsteads, deep canyons, and ancient bush<br />


Horse Trekking at Blue Duck Station”<br />

with magnificent mountains in all their glory. Tailor-made packages<br />

can be customised to include jetboating, as well as visiting several<br />

off-the-grid destinations that offer unique experiences.<br />

Multi-day horse safari at Blue Duck Station<br />

Traverse the dramatic landscapes of Whanganui National Park by<br />

horseback and see the world from a different perspective – where<br />

there’s nothing between you and our greater outdoors. Navigate<br />

virgin rainforest and untouched trails on a multi-day horse trek at<br />

Blue Duck Station that includes your own personal guide, and all<br />

the creature comforts you could possibly want. This incredible, fully<br />

catered experience includes awesome accommodation, luggage<br />

transfers, gourmet meals, a jet boat tour on the Whanganui River as<br />

well as an upgraded package option that combines the one-of-a-kind<br />

Chef’s Table experience.<br />

Take on New Zealand’s longest, most advanced gondola ride at<br />

Sky Waka<br />

Journey into the clouds on the Sky Waka gondola ride and let<br />

your senses soar to new heights. As New Zealand’s longest, most<br />

advanced gondola ride, the Sky Waka is a 1.8 km incredible journey<br />

above the UNESCO Dual World Heritage Site of Tongariro National<br />

Park starting from Whakapapa on Mt Ruapehu. Arrive at the awardwinning<br />

Knoll Ridge Chalet and feast on a lavish lunch buffet with<br />

stunning floor-to-ceiling views overlooking the Pinnacles and the<br />

valley below.<br />

The peak of fine dining at The Chef’s Table<br />

More than just a dinner party, dining at The Chef’s Table at Blue<br />

Duck Station is a once in a lifetime experience that delivers top of<br />

the world dining surrounded by the majestic peaks of Ruapehu,<br />

Ngāuruhoe and Taranaki. A remote, refined, conservation focused<br />

restaurant that tantalises taste buds with a 3-4 hour long tasting<br />

menu - consisting of 11 dishes farmed and foraged from produce<br />

and ingredients found on the station. With three luxury cabins<br />

adjacent to the restaurant, you can experience the renowned ATV<br />

Bush Safari Dinner as well as the bed and breakfast combo and truly<br />

embrace the good life.<br />

Wonders will never cease for<br />

true explorers...<br />

Find your next adventure at<br />

www.visitruapehu.com<br />

Retaruke Country Estate<br />

Chef's Table at Blue Duck Station

The longest<br />


ADVENTURE ever<br />

Now that winter had passed and the darker waters were once again like gin, I could see him<br />

darting out from the under the hanging tree eating whatever it is the trout were eating that day. I<br />

had a feeling he knew I was there. The sun was bright, and it was hard to keep your shadow off<br />

the water. With the water this clear you need to be cunning. But I had fished this spot so many<br />

times, over and over, but this big old boy was too clever for me. Today, I knew would be my last<br />

chance. I cast the tiny hook up stream of him and watched as the fly approached. I had drifted<br />

over this fish dozens of times. Suddenly and unexpectedly the water erupted. Determined not to<br />

lose this big guy I chased him down stream as he headed off like a train for faster, safer water.<br />

But slowly I wore him down and edged him towards the riverbank. I unclipped my net and moved<br />

him carefully towards me. On sighting the net, he did one big back flip, and the line broke just<br />

above the fly.<br />

I could see the beaded fly, like a gangster lip piercing on the top of his lip. He sat a few feet away<br />

from me in the clear water, getting his breath back. I looked at him, he looked at me and with a<br />

‘f&@k you’ attitude he very slowly swam off. I sat on the bank, watched the river, resigned myself<br />

to the loss, and then walked the 600m home and that was the end of day eighty!

Covid changed the face of a lot of activities, instead of being<br />

able to trek across the world or even New Zealand you had<br />

to stay in one place. But sometimes, you are just lucky.<br />

In July 2021 we decided that we would ski the whole season<br />

as often as we could and moved family and business to<br />

Turangi under the shadow of the mighty maunga and on the<br />

banks of the Tongariro. We have owned a property in Turangi<br />

for years and although the river has changed a few times<br />

over the years with different flooding patterns, our house has<br />

always been about 600m from the bank.<br />

It was here I was taught to fly fish by the late John<br />

Sommerville, who sadly passed away while I was in the<br />

middle of writing this article. He not only taught me how to<br />

fish, he showed me how to love it and it has been a passion<br />

ever since.<br />

When we arrived in July, I didn’t fish every day but did a<br />

few times a week. Then lockdown came and at first you<br />

were not allowed to fish. What was truly amazing was how<br />

the river soon flourished with life; the trout were shallow<br />

and there were a lot of them, even my dog started to try<br />

and catch them. But absence makes the heart grow fonder<br />

and not being able to fish fuelled into a passion. I heard a<br />

rumour that you could fish in the river at level 4, but I wasn’t<br />

sure, so I asked a local police officer who was checking on<br />

the riverbank if it was ok or not? His reply in typical Turangi<br />

fashion was, “you can fish but don’t be a dick and wade too<br />

deep.” With the official nod of approval I was back into it.<br />

Eighty days back to back without missing one, might be<br />

some sort of a record. Some days were more fun that others,<br />

I caught fish in a deluging raging storm and caught nothing<br />

on windless perfect days.<br />

As a rough calculation I have used over 150m of line; 10lbs,<br />

8lbs, 6lbs and 4lbs. It is hard to calculate the number of lost<br />

flies, but it must be in the region 100, particularly when I first<br />

started, some local trees that are hard to get to over deepwater<br />

pools look like Christmas trees (not just with my flies).<br />

I broke two rods; one I slipped on the bank and snapped it at<br />

the handle, the other broke on a large fish (I think a previous<br />

cast that had hit the rod had caused a crack). I have been<br />

through 5 pairs of thermal socks and bought three types of<br />

waders to cope with the changing season.<br />

How many fish? On average I lost about 5 fish per day so<br />

that’s a loss of about 400 fish! Some days you land one,<br />

some you land 10. I never kept a record, but I wish I had. I<br />

didn’t always bring them home, but I would bring one home<br />

from time to time. That is still a lot of trout to eat; fried, baked,<br />

smoked, grilled, pate, Thai, Chinese, even raw. With noodles,<br />

with vegetables, with rice or just on its own. I even tried to<br />

cook the roe once, it looked great but I could not get that to<br />

work, but I am open to suggestions.<br />

In the central plateau you really see the change in seasons;<br />

the paths you freely walked in winter, in summer are choked<br />

with rapid growing everything; trees and shrubs go from<br />

black bare branches to buds, to blossoms, to leaves. One<br />

winters morning it was so cold, minus 8 and my fingers<br />

were so frozen I could not tie on a fly and my rod eyes were<br />

freezing over, and in summer it is so hot you have to stop<br />

and climb out of all your gear to rest and cool down.<br />

There is a real sense of a fishing community here, you meet<br />

the same people on the river, everyone has time to stop<br />

and chat, you find yourself happily helping novices because<br />

others helped you and after eighty days you really don’t care<br />

if you don’t fish every moment. But you do get to know every<br />

nook, cranny, and ripple. Once, I arrived to see a guy and<br />

his wife stand on a bank a quarter away across the river.<br />

Fishing in a fast rapid. They saw me coming and waved. I<br />

asked how the fishing was going they said terrible that they<br />

had been there for an hour and nothing. So I told them there<br />

are fish in the rapid, ‘there’ and pointed to a shallow ripple,<br />

behind them is where I knew fish had been laying day after<br />

day, (I had stopped fishing that spot as it as it was a bit like<br />

shooting fish in a barrel). I could tell they didn’t believe me,<br />

so I encouraged them to give it a try. One cast, one fish.<br />

They were amazed and thrilled, it made my day.<br />

Living in Turangi there are a lot of trout guides, in our street<br />

alone there are four or five. As long as you have time to<br />

spare, they are happy to pass over their years of expertise<br />

because you are part of the community.<br />

Eighty days fishing seems like a lot, and I guess it is,<br />

when you look back through your phone images it’s been<br />

a great way to spend the winter, it becomes almost a type<br />

of meditation, the action, the calm, the sound of the river,<br />

and as the world was pretty much in turmoil it was a great<br />

escape. It really is not about catching the fish, it’s about the<br />

experience.<br />

Lastly, I have to give a shout out to the local fishing store<br />

in Turangi, Sporting Life; Andrew, Jessie, and the team<br />

have been great. Always helpful with real advice and their<br />

knowledge of the area is complete (this is not a paid advert).<br />

A good local store can take so much of the guess work out of<br />

a region.<br />

As we still try to come to terms with what has happened in<br />

the world, it’s good to know that there can be a silver lining<br />

and mine has been the opportunity to become extremely<br />

intermate with a stretch of water that in normal circumstance<br />

would have been a one night stand.<br />




*<br />

Making history<br />

K2 IN WINTER<br />

Nepalese climber Nirmal 'Nims' Purja MBE made history on January 16, 2021, at 5pm local<br />

time when the former Gurkha and UK Special Forces operative and his team became the first<br />

mountaineers to ever summit K2 in winter.<br />

With a plan to complete all 14 eight-thousand metre summits in seven months, Nims summited<br />

the first mountain on 23 April 2019 and completed Project Possible 14/7 six months later with a<br />

successful summit on 29 October using supplemental oxygen. Project possible has now been made<br />

into a Netflx documentary called 14 Peaks: Nothing is Impossible...<br />

But K2 is altogether different beast... Standing 8,611m above sea level, K2 is the second highest<br />

peak, dwarfed only by Mount Everest, and the only 8,000m peak in the world that had never been<br />

climbed during winter with attempts on the mountain normally made in July or August, during the<br />

warmest periods.<br />

Although previously only attempted in the summer months, K2 has one of the deadliest records,<br />

killing one climber for every four who succeed in reaching its summit. In winter the odds of survival<br />

are even less. Since the first attempt in 1954, 87 climbers have perished on its slopes and only 377<br />

have successfully reached the summit.<br />

The extra challenges that winter brings are winds of up to 200km per hour and temperatures as<br />

low as minus 60oC. Climbers have to navigate nearly sheer rock faces rising 80 degrees, while<br />

avoiding frequent and unpredictable avalanches. There are numerous natural hurdles including the<br />

Black Pyramid and the deadliest part of the climb, the Bottleneck, a steep gully ridges with columns<br />

of glacial ice prone to collapsing. It was here that 11 people lost their lives in 2008, when one of the<br />

ridges broke free sending an avalanche into the group of climbers. None survived.<br />

However, the descent is where most of the deaths (85%) happen because climbers use all their<br />

energy reaching the summit and leave no reserves.<br />

Only eight expeditions have attempted a winter ascent, but Nims and his crew are the first to reach<br />

the summit.<br />

The full list of those who summitted K2 in winter is: Nirmal Purja (Team Nimsdai), Mingma David<br />

Sherpa (Team Nimsdai), Mingma Tenzi Sherpa (Team Nimsdai), Geljen Sherpa (Team Nimsdai),<br />

Pem Chiri Sherpa (Team Nimsdai), Dawa Temba Sherpa (Team Nimsdai), Mingma G (Team<br />

Mingma G), Dawa Tenzing Sherpa (Team Mingma G), Kilu Pemba Sherpa (Team Mingma G) and<br />

Sona Sherpa (Team SST).<br />

Here is what the 37-year-old had to say about the team's extraordinary feat:<br />


What are the main three things that separates a winter<br />

climb from a summer one?<br />

The three main elements are: the extreme cold temperatures,<br />

weather conditions and the climber's ability to function in such<br />

environment.<br />

Your story has been embraced by the world as a slice of<br />

hope in dark times, so how proud are you that a team of<br />

Nepalese climbers could give hope and joy to so many<br />

people in need? This event will always remain as one of<br />

the most special moments of my life. What we have achieved<br />

and earned wasn't for any individual gain. I am humbled<br />

that we were able to share this moment and reach out to the<br />

communities around the world, in the middle of a pandemic.<br />

We were able to relay a strong positive message. Pushing the<br />

human limits and making that impossible possible as a team<br />

showed that what can be achieved with solidarity and unity.<br />

Nothing is impossible if you put your heart, mind and soul into it.<br />

Which parts of the challenge were you most afraid of<br />

before you set off and which parts turned out to be the<br />

hardest during it? I had frost nip on my fingers and hadn't<br />

acclimatised adequately above Camp 2 (6,600m). The decision<br />

to press on summit push was a tough one. There was no such<br />

thing as the hardest challenge during the climb, as the entire<br />

journey was a challenge of its kind.<br />

What makes K2 such a special, mystical mountain<br />

compared to Mount Everest in the winter? It was the hardest<br />

and the last remaining challenge. Mount Everest was already<br />

climbed in winter.<br />

How are you feeling mentally and physically right now<br />

after completing such an incredible feat? I feel great. All my<br />

team members made it home safe and sound and that what is<br />

matters the most.<br />

Tell us about your Nepalese partners for the summit<br />

ascent - how did you choose the team, and how important<br />

were they in the successful attempt? K2 winter was no<br />

joke! Selecting team members was not limited to their physical<br />

ability but they needed to have a strong mindset too. Everyone<br />

needed to have a sheer desire and determination to make this<br />

impossible possible for humankind and for the Nepali climbing<br />

community, who have always been the frontier of 8000m but<br />

never received their due. I am super proud of all my team<br />

members. The success was a joint team effort, a symbol of<br />

hardship, selfless effort and unity.<br />

What did you take away from completing Project Possible<br />

that helped you in your K2 quest? Climbing 14 x 8000ers in<br />

six months wasn't easy, of course. There was a lot of ups and<br />

downs. I learnt a lot through the experiences and gathered<br />

knowledge.<br />

What skills from your time in the UK's Special Boat Service<br />

helped you the most on this challenge? I think the main one<br />

is the ability to make decisions in any stressful environment.<br />

You have to keep yourself calm and composed, whatever the<br />

situation is, and have that positive outlook.<br />

You have been breaking records at an astonishing speed.<br />

Are you going to have a rest or have you already got<br />

another challenge up your sleeve? I love pushing my limits. I<br />

heard someone saying that Nimsdai is full of surprises. Let's put<br />

it that way, who knows what's next!<br />

You are known to like a good party after your feats. How<br />

long will this one last? Aha, one needs a good celebration<br />

after a feat like this. It's like recuperation. I feel extremely happy<br />

seeing all my team members happy. It may last a few weeks,<br />

for sure.<br />



OTAGO<br />

*<br />

Cycling<br />


The Cycling on Central Otago Cycle trails<br />

provides a huge range of great options<br />

for all riders at Grade 1 – 3 levels. That<br />

is without even looking at the options for<br />

those wanting cross country and downhill<br />

hill options.<br />

The Otago Central Rail Trail from Clyde to Middlemarch has been<br />

attracting riders from around New Zealand and the world for over 20<br />

years and is the “Original Great Ride”. It was the result of some very<br />

forward thinking from landowners and DOC on the closure of the Railway<br />

line from Ranfurly to Middlemarch in the early 90’s. This trail suits<br />

families, social groups, and the individual travellers with a great range of<br />

accommodation from DOC campsites, Holiday Parks B’nB’s, purposebuilt<br />

lodges and if you are wanting that special boutique experience that<br />

can be provided as well. The trail is 152 kms in total and can be ridden<br />

over 3-5 days,with 4 days being the most popular as it allows for those<br />

sore bums and to enjoy everything the trail has to offer. Food is not a<br />

problem with some of NZ’s best and brightest country pubs and cafes<br />

along the way. This trail is all grade 1 so suits all riders from the less<br />

experienced or very young through to those where cycling is a passion.<br />


The Roxburgh Gorge Trail from Alexandra<br />

(most people do start from Clyde) to the<br />

Roxburgh Hydro Dam 22 / 34km riding. It is<br />

usually combined with the Clutha Gold trail<br />

for a great multi day experience, however,<br />

it is a great 1-day trip for those on a shorter<br />

timeframe. The Gorge is considered NZ "Little<br />

Grand Canyon". The views are stunning, and it is<br />

complemented by an awesome boat ride in the<br />

middle to connect the ends of the trail. This boat<br />

trip provides you with all the history of this area<br />

focusing on the gold mining in particular. There<br />

is some significant climbing, but it is all easily<br />

ridable with the highest grade being Grade 2.<br />


The Clutha Gold Trail is an awesome Grade 1 trail that<br />

follows the mighty Clutha Mata Au River from the Lake<br />

Roxburgh Dam to Beaumont on a undulating flowing ride. It<br />

then heads to Lawrence via Big Hill tunnel. You pass through<br />

Millers Flat and then the Beaumont Gorge stopping at<br />

Horseshoe Bend bridge and a side trip to the Lonely Graves<br />

beckons. Finishing in Lawrence allows you to bring all that<br />

gold mining history to a closure with a great little museum and<br />

the opportunity to visit Gabriel’s Gully, the home of NZ’s first<br />

major Gold Rush. This trail is also under further development<br />

with it hopefully reaching Milton later this year, allowing more<br />

people to enjoy the accommodation, cafes and shops that<br />

Lawrence has to offer.<br />

The Lake Dunstan Trail has opened this year and has proved<br />

to be a huge drawcard for both local and out of town riders. It<br />

is a wonderful 40km ride from Old Cromwell Town to Historic<br />

Clyde on a trail that varies between Grade 1 and Grade 3. It is<br />

super important to ride within your means. The ride to Coffee<br />

A Float is perfect for families and novices from there you need<br />

to be competent riders to ensure you and other riders on the<br />

trail have a safe and enjoyable trip. The engineering on this<br />

trail is second to none with amazing cantilever sections and<br />

stunning stonework.<br />

The opportunity for combining all or some of these trails or<br />

sections of all of them is huge. If you are looking at staying<br />

in one place then Clyde beckons, then you can do 3 one day<br />

trips on the OCRT, the Roxburgh Gorge and finish with the<br />

Lake Dunstan Trail the perfect progression and three totally<br />

different experiences. If you are wanting a multi-day cycle<br />

experience with different accommodation each evening and<br />

riding for 5 days, in fact up to 10 days you can combine all 4<br />

trails.<br />

Grades<br />

Grade 1 (Easiest)<br />

Suitable for novice riders, families and others seeking an<br />

easy, relaxing cycling experience. Most bikes are suitable,<br />

including touring bikes, hybrid bikes and children’s bikes.<br />

E-bikes are also suitable as long as they are ridden<br />

appropriately and have sufficient battery capacity.<br />

Off-road trails are smooth (firm gravel or sealed), with only<br />

gentle climbs and generally wide enough for side-by-side<br />

riding. Many follow old rail trails. On-road sections of Great<br />

Rides generally follow quiet roads with little traffic.<br />

Grade 2 (Easy)<br />

Suitable for most riders including beginners, occasional<br />

cyclists and families with limited cycling experience. A<br />

multi-geared bike with medium to wide knobbly tyres is<br />

recommended, such as a comfort bike, touring bike or<br />

mountain bike. E-bikes are also suitable as long as they are<br />

ridden appropriately and have sufficient battery capacity.<br />

Off-road trails are usually wide and smooth (firm gravel<br />

or sealed), with some gentle climbs. These trails are<br />

predictable, i.e. have no nasty surprises. On-road sections<br />

of Great Rides generally follow quiet roads with little traffic.<br />

Grade 3 (Intermediate)<br />

Suitable for regular experienced cyclists with a good<br />

level of fitness and over 12 years old; children should be<br />

accompanied by an adult.<br />

A mountain bike is recommended for off-road sections.<br />

E-mountain bikes are suitable provided they are ridden<br />

appropriately, have sufficient battery capacity, and the rider<br />

is capable of completing the trail in the event of a battery/<br />

power failure.<br />

For on-road trails/sections on gravel roads, bikes with<br />

knobbly tyres are recommended. Road racing tyres are<br />

generally not suitable.<br />

Off-road trails can be narrow and may include hills, steep<br />

drop-offs and small river crossings. Trail surfaces are<br />

mainly firm but may include muddy or loose sections, and<br />

obstacles such as rocks or tree roots.<br />

On-road trails/sections may have moderate traffic levels (up<br />

to 1000 vehicles a day), and include hill climbs and gravel<br />

sections. Note: all Heartland Rides are grade 3 or above.<br />


Reviews from<br />

millions of Tripadvisor<br />

travellers place this<br />

attraction in the top<br />

10% worldwide.<br />

Come cycling in<br />

stunning Central Otago<br />

and let the experts look<br />

after all your needs.<br />

> Lake Dunstan Trail<br />

> Otago Central Rail Trail<br />

> Roxbourgh Gorge Trail<br />

and more...<br />

Call the experts at Bike It Now!: 0800 245 366<br />

Clyde Bike Shop and Tour office open 7 Days<br />

Cromwell Bike Shop open 7 days<br />

www.bikeitnow.co.nz<br />

Tripadvisor<br />

Travellers’<br />

Choice<br />

Bike It Now!<br />


Words and images by Rob Wilson<br />

New Zealand Tamatea Blue Project - Ghost Diving NZ<br />

Ghost Divers join the dive charter Pure Salt to descend<br />

into historical Fiordland to remove over 5000kgs of bottles<br />

and junk from the seemingly pristine water of this exclusive<br />

location. Anchors and plundered sinks from a nearby wreck<br />

of historic significance are just some of the items we have<br />

removed from the sites during this project. In total in three<br />

years and 9 dives we have removed 11,500kgs from Dusky<br />

Sound<br />

Helicopter insertion for a dive felt very much like we<br />

were special forces<br />

Helicopter insertion through some of the most incredible<br />

mountains felt very much like we were special forces and<br />

especially so as an ex NZ Navy vessel the *M.V Flightless<br />

was waiting for us at our landing zone. (*now owned by local<br />

business Pure Salt - www.puresalt.co.nz.) However, with<br />

such a unique insertion, carry on equipment was restricted<br />

so we were travelling light.<br />

The flight through the snow-capped peaks is definitely one<br />

of the most incredible experiences of my life, I was virtually<br />

speechless at its sheer rugged beauty. The helicopter<br />

touches down on a platform on top of the majestic 27m<br />

vessel the Flightless.<br />

We met Maria and Sean our hosts who have hosted myself<br />

and the team during this incredible project. They were the<br />

most amazing people with passion, energy, sheer love<br />

and respect for this land we all call home - Aotearoa (New<br />

Zealand.)<br />

The "Tamatea Blue Project" has a double meaning. One is<br />

that 'Dusky Sound', the area we were heading to, is called<br />

'Tamatea' in Maori language. The other is that the area<br />

pays homage to one of New Zealand’s greatest explorers<br />

'Tamatea, who has been described as the ‘Māori Marco<br />

Polo’. He circumnavigated the North and South islands and<br />

also explored inland. He was sometimes called Tamateapōkaiwhenua<br />

(land explorer) or Tamatea-pōkaimoana (sea<br />

explorer). And to say this area was of historic significance is<br />

by far the understatement of 2020.<br />

This area marks the very first meaningful interaction<br />

with those Europeans from the outside world<br />

This area marks the very first meaningful interaction with<br />

those Europeans from the outside world as Captain Cook on<br />

his second voyage interacted directly with the 'Iwi' (Tribes)<br />

in 1773. And the cove that the project was operating in<br />

is a beautiful site called 'Luncheon Cove' where the first<br />

European settlement in New Zealand located in 1792.<br />


Fiordland rain is something else, “Well it is a rainforest”

Left to right: Historic sink plundered from the wreck of the Waikare, recovered by our team in Luncheon Cove.<br />

Rob Edward - James Croker and Eddie Howard descend to the black coral.<br />

Some of the 40 batteries recovered<br />

Opposite page: Stuart Day and Rob Wilson clear their safety stop and prepare to ascend after the tyres they have sent to the surface.<br />

Now fast forward to 2021 now our third<br />

visit to Dusky, the dive team suit up into<br />

their drysuits and Halcyon kit, ready<br />

to dive in this incredibly exclusive and<br />

isolated location. In all honesty I was not<br />

expecting what we usually encounter<br />

with our typical Ghost Diving dives or<br />

when we dive for Project Baseline Clyde<br />

Quay. Surprisingly enough, the sight I<br />

saw was not so dissimilar!<br />

Bubbles roared from the exhaust tee<br />

of my Halo as I descended through the<br />

tannin rich water, scanning left and right<br />

I saw two Seven-Gill Sharks come up<br />

out of the depths to welcome our team to<br />

the area, it was wonderful. Sadly though,<br />

within minutes I scootered over a huge<br />

pile of car batteries, initially I estimated<br />

at least 20. The actual amount once<br />

we dug them out of the seabed was<br />

horrifying at 40! (1000kgs of car batteries<br />

alone.) We knew we had our work cut<br />

out for us....<br />

Freedivers and technical divers<br />

working in harmony<br />

Since the launch of Ghost Diving here in<br />

NZ, I have constantly seen the value of<br />

working with highly skilled freedivers and<br />

this project again proved their invaluable<br />

support.<br />

Throughout this annual project, we have<br />

been working side by side with some<br />

incredible free-divers and they are truly<br />

amazing. The one item we find by the<br />

mountain is long neck beer bottles –<br />

there were literally 1000s.<br />

Both Scuba and Free teams haul beer<br />

bottle after beer bottle filling giant canvas<br />

bags to be removed in one hit with our<br />

lift bags. We have even found multiple<br />

anchors over the last three years and<br />

they had snared everything from fishing<br />

lines to ropes of various flavours.<br />

One of the items as irony has it, to be<br />

discovered was as I surged home to the<br />

vessel on my DPV (Dive Xtras scooter),<br />

I noticed an odd circular shape on the<br />

sea bed. The circle was no more than an<br />

inch across, but after years of doing this,<br />

I have an uncanny eye for the uncanny!<br />

Descending back to the sea floor I began<br />

clawing at the edges of this bizarre<br />

looking object. To my surprise, it was<br />

another sink! (We found another one on<br />

our first trip in 2019.)<br />

We had literally found everything<br />

including the kitchen sink and as soon<br />

as I saw the Union Steamship logo, I<br />

knew again it was something interesting.<br />

In actual fact, this sink had a surprising<br />

significance.<br />

We had literally found everything<br />

including the kitchen sink<br />

This particular sink as had the previous<br />

one from 2019 had been plundered and<br />

then dumped from a nearby wreck of a<br />

vessel called the 'Waikare' a steamship<br />

that had struck an uncharted rock<br />

between Indian island and Passage Inlet<br />

in 1910 before beaching on Stop Island<br />

for the passengers to safely disembark.<br />

The skipper Sean and Maria recognised<br />

the sink and its significance straight<br />

away - again showing their intimate<br />

knowledge of this area. Maria and Sean<br />

without hesitation got this historic sink off<br />

to a local maritime museum where the<br />

sink is now proudly on display.<br />

The teams worked in amazing cohesion<br />

for the time we had in the darkened<br />

water. A grand total of over 5000kgs was<br />

removed from this amazing area, most of<br />

which was thrown from visiting vessels.<br />

And at the end of the project the Pure<br />

Salt team spoiled us with a dive to see<br />

the majestic black coral<br />

Tamatea/Dusky Sound of course is world<br />

famous for its black coral some of which<br />

we found in 11m of water and any diver<br />

will tell you that is incredible as it is as<br />

a deep water species. At the end of the<br />

project, the Pure Salt team spoiled us<br />

with a dive to see this majestic black<br />

coral in 25-29m of water.<br />

Something rare and fascinating grows<br />

in the depths of Milford Sound – black<br />

coral. Known as antipathes fiordensis,<br />

this black coral is native to the Fiordland<br />

area. Black coral usually lives in deep<br />

ocean but thanks to the geology of<br />

Milford Sound, you can see black coral<br />

as shallow as 10 metres below the<br />

surface.<br />

As heavy rainfall drains through the lush<br />

forests, it gets stained with tannins until<br />

that is the colour of strong tea. Because<br />

fresh water is less dense than salt water,<br />

the rainwater forms a protective top layer<br />

over the salt water from the incoming<br />

Tasman Sea. The darkened fresh water<br />

blocks sunlight, with light levels at 10m<br />

deep in Milford Sound being equivalent<br />

to those at about 70m in the open sea.<br />

Due to this unique environment, the fiord<br />

supports the world’s biggest population<br />

of black coral trees.<br />

There are 60 varieties of black coral in<br />

Dusky Sound and it is also home to rare<br />

red corals and the enormous bubblegum<br />

coral, which can grow up to seven<br />

metres high and live for centuries. There<br />

are about seven million colonies of coral<br />

in Dusky Sound.<br />

A truly magnificent location and an<br />

incredibly valuable project.<br />

The initial success of our first project in<br />

2019 was the first stepping stone for the<br />

now annual Tamatea Blue Project with<br />

the crew of Pure Salt. Some of my teams<br />

are joining me again and some gutsy<br />

volunteers and battle tested freedivers<br />

to again make a difference to this once<br />

pristine environment.<br />

We will endeavour to return this magical<br />

place to its true majesty before the onset<br />

of those before us.<br />


Would you like to donate? www.givealittle.co.nz/cause/ghost-diving-nz<br />

For more information and memberships gfnzmembership@gmail.com



*<br />



Your 2022 <strong>Adventure</strong> Bucket List<br />

The last two years have made us really appreciate what's In<br />

our own backyard - yet so many still haven't gone beyond<br />

the beaten track, and explored the not so well-known "hidden<br />

gems". With much of the world reopening It's borders, and New<br />

Zealand soon to follow, 2022 Is undoubtedly the year to get<br />

these bucket-list adventures done.<br />


Lake Tekapo from UC Mount John Observatory

Glentanner Heli Hike<br />

The Mackenzie Region Is home to some of New Zealand's most<br />

recognisable Icons such as Aoraki and the piercingly blue lakes<br />

of Pūkaki and Tekapo. The region (which includes the townships<br />

of Fairlie, Lake Tekapo, Aoraki/Mount Cook and Twizel) also<br />

boasts the world's largest gold dark sky reserve, New Zealand's<br />

largest glacier and some of the most spectacular trails and<br />

backcountry to adventure in. It's no wonder the region was<br />

one of the most popular international visitor spots prior to the<br />

pandemic.<br />

Here's our top adventures to put on your list in 2022:<br />

Ski The Tasman Glacier<br />

Dark Sky Project, UC Mount John Observatory<br />

1. Overnight next to Aoraki<br />

Alpine Guides' Plateau Hut Overnight trip Is the perfect 'easy'<br />

mountain adventure with no mountaineering experience<br />

necessary. Stay In the modern NZ alpine hut (where<br />

mountaineers stay before they make their Aoraki ascent)<br />

and enjoy the 'big mountain' terrain. You'll accompanied by<br />

a professional guide who will show you all that’s required for<br />

safe glacier travel, including crampons, snowshoes and ice<br />

axe skills. One of the many highlights is a non-technical climb<br />

to the summit of Glacier Dome (2,452m) – a snow-clad peak<br />

on the very flanks of Aoraki/Mount Cook. The experience Is<br />

great for astrophotographers and star lovers who love a taste of<br />

adventure. Alpineguides.co.nz<br />

Alpine Recreation's Mt Cook Trek is a two day guided trek<br />

through amazing alpine terrain In Aoraki/Mount Cook National<br />

Park. Enjoy a night In the private Caroline Hut whilst savouring<br />

the mindblowing views (and sounds) of the 2000m high Caroline<br />

Face of Aoraki. You'll be awed by the sunsets, stars and the<br />

sounds of avalanches rumbling down Aoraki. The Mt Cook Trek<br />

Is beginner mountaineering and more demanding than any of the<br />

Great Walks - you'll need to have previous hiking, backpacking<br />

or bushwalking experience. alpinerecreation.co.nz<br />

2. Grow your mountaineering skills<br />

Amping to get into the mountains but don't quite have the<br />

technical capability or confidence to do your dream alpine<br />

adventure? Alpine Recreation, Alpine Guides and Southern<br />

Alps Guiding provide a range of group and personalised<br />

mountaineering and climbing courses to help aspiring and<br />

experienced mountaineers build their technical abilities and<br />

confidence, setting solid foundations for future years of<br />

exploration. Learn the technical skills of mountaineering, risk<br />

awareness, how to assess weather and hazards, and more.<br />

After completing a course you’ll be able to plan your own trips<br />

above the snowline, choose a safe route, travel confidently<br />

through snow, and other essential skills for safe mountaineering.<br />

alpineguides.co.nz, mtcook.com, alpinerecreation.co.nz<br />

3. Experience rural Mackenzie<br />

The Mackenzie is renowned for its spectacularly rugged farming<br />

terrain and tough pioneering spirt. If the challenging alpine<br />

terrain within Aoraki / Mount Cook National Park Isn't what you're<br />

after - then try a single or multi day guided walk across one of<br />

our Iconic high country stations. You’ll gain a rich insight into<br />

what it takes to farm in this rugged part of the country.<br />

Roundhill Ski Area<br />

Four Peaks High Country Track is a 2-4 day/night walk or<br />

mountain bike ride over a historic sheep station, in the hills near<br />

Fairlie, 2 hours from Christchurch. The track is an initial 17km<br />

drive in a 4WD vehicle to the start of the track. The walk itself<br />

is an approximate 25km round trip over Four Peaks Station<br />

following the route taken by pioneer farmers and shepherds<br />


Plateau Hut Overnight, Aoraki / Mount Cook National Park<br />

Tekapo <strong>Adventure</strong>s Mackenzie Alpine Hike

in the 1850s when sheep were first farmed in<br />

the area. The unique shepherds’ huts (including<br />

NZ’s oldest surviving shepherd’s hut) are those<br />

used by shepherds for mustering and boundary<br />

keeping from the 1860s to the 1970s when there<br />

was little or no fencing in the South Island high<br />

country. They have been upgraded for comfort<br />

and cosiness with flush toilets and hot showers,<br />

while taking care to retain as much of their original<br />

history and charm as possible. Your packs are<br />

transported from hut to hut so you only walk/bike<br />

with a small daypack to carry lunch & wet weather<br />

gear. walkfourpeaks.co.nz<br />

Tekapo <strong>Adventure</strong>s offer the stunning Mackenzie<br />

Alpine Hiking tour - a 2 night guided walking<br />

experience that takes you through the Iconic<br />

Glenmore Station which spans over 50,000 acres<br />

and neighbours Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park.<br />

The trek Is catered towards moderate fitness<br />

levels, and operates December - May. You'll stay<br />

In private huts and even visit New Zealand's (and<br />

possibly the world's) highest whiskey hut - aptly<br />

named Bad Decision Hut. This hike Is everything<br />

you think of when you think Mackenzie working<br />

stations - It offers mountainous backcountry, U<br />

shaped valleys carved by glaciation, waterfalls,<br />

glaciers, moraines and braided river systems.<br />

tekapoadventures.co.nz<br />

If time doesn’t allow a multi-day walk then<br />

Glentanner Heli-Hike is for you. Explore the<br />

stunning Glentanner Station by foot on this 3.5<br />

hour guided descent. This iconic working station<br />

overlooks Lake Pūkaki and Aoraki Mount Cook<br />

National Park, offering some of the world’s most<br />

spectacular views. The new walking tour has been<br />

created since the pandemic, and has been a hit<br />

with the domestic market. Glentanner.co.nz<br />

4. Winter different<br />

The Mackenzie transforms into a winter playground<br />

over the cooler months, offering a plethora of<br />

amazing experiences for the winter adventurer.<br />

Alpine Guides, Southern Alps Guiding, Heliworks,<br />

The Helicopter Line and Mt Cook Ski Planes and<br />

Helicopters all offer a range of heli-ski options In<br />

Aoraki / Mount Cook National Park. And whilst the<br />

word 'heli-ski' sounds like technically challenging<br />

terrain, there's actually something to suit almost<br />

every level of skier. Skiing the Tasman Glacier<br />

Is perfect for families and groups of mates with<br />

differing abilities - It's easy to Intermediate (blue/<br />

green) runs with unbeatable views of Aoraki. If you<br />

strike a good day you'll get Inside Ice caves and<br />

see Incredible formations as well. The competent<br />

skier will also be satisfied In the National Park -<br />

simply call one of the region's heli-ski operators to<br />

discuss what might work for you.<br />

Ski The Tasman Glacier<br />



Tekapo <strong>Adventure</strong>s Mackenzie Alpine Hike<br />

Getting there<br />

The Mackenzie approximately 2.5 hours drive<br />

on the main highway between Christchurch and<br />

Queenstown. The closest airport Is Timaru which<br />

offers direct flights from Wellington. There are a<br />

range of rental (self-drive) options. Intercity and<br />

Cheeky Kiwi Travel also offer coach services<br />

between Christchurch and Queenstown.<br />

Recommended Stay<br />

• Skyscape, Twizel<br />

• Quail Rest, Lake Benmore<br />

• Highland Farm Stay, Twizel<br />

• Musterers, Fairlie<br />

• The Cairns, Lake Tekapo<br />

Recommended Eats<br />

• Fairlie Bakehouse<br />

• Mint Folk & Co, Twizel<br />

• Silverstream Hotel, Kimbell<br />

• Grumpy Cow, Lake Tekapo<br />

• Blue Lake Eatery, Lake Tekapo<br />

• Mountaineers, Aoraki<br />

Recommended Add On's:<br />

• Tekapo Springs Hot Pools<br />

• Dark Sky Project stargazing tour<br />

• Glacier Explorers<br />

• Omarama Clay Cliffs<br />

• Hooker Valley Track<br />

Visit www.mackenzienz.com for Inspiration and<br />

Information when planning your next adventure In<br />

the Mackenzie.<br />

Alpine Recreation offers a range of guided ski and split<br />

board touring trips and backcountry experiences In some of<br />

the country's most spectacular winter wilderness locations.<br />

They also offer ski touring and backcountry instruction<br />

courses for those wanting to build confidence and<br />

competence. They own and operate two private, heated<br />

huts and can create touring options to cater for various ski<br />

and boarding abilities, fitness levels and objectives. For<br />

those wanting to tour without a guide, Glenmore Station<br />

offers a range of bookable huts perfect for the experienced<br />

ski-tourer.<br />

In addition to these bucket-list winter ski adventures, don’t<br />

forget to head to the three boutique skifields (Dobson,<br />

Roundhill, Ōhau) which offer a more relaxed pace to the<br />

bigger fields in the surrounding regions. A mulled wine or<br />

cider overlooking Lake Tekapo at Roundhill’s von Brown<br />

Hut is a must.<br />

5. Alps 2 Ocean<br />

The Mackenzie Is the starting point of the popular Great<br />

Ride Alps 2 Ocean, with starting points in both Lake Tekapo<br />

and Aoraki/Mount Cook. The trail Is widely regarded as<br />

providing New Zealand’s condensed topography all in one<br />

ride: snow-capped mountains; emerald green paddocks;<br />

native bush; wide-open golden grasslands; and a flowing<br />

journey of water from glaciers, turquoise lakes, rivers,<br />

canals, finishing up at the Pacific Ocean. The full trail is<br />

315km with the end point in Ōamaru. Most take 5-7 days<br />

to complete the trail (and enjoy the myriad of experiences<br />

and eateries along the way) however there are also<br />

opportunities for day trips. There's a range of operators<br />

provided guided tours, logistics and bike (Including e-bike)<br />

rentals making the preparation and experience easy.<br />

alps2ocean.com<br />



A good South swell, and the islands of Tahiti<br />

get the best waves in the world. This image<br />

was shot by Bogus Sta from Tahiti. Teahupo'o<br />

has produced some breath-taking images<br />

over the years and Bogus has manged to<br />

capture some amazing moments.<br />

Bogus commented about this image<br />

“This wave was a bomb and it really surprised<br />

us all, luckily I had time to shoot Raimana<br />

making a perfect ride as the west bowl was<br />

getting super heavy. I had to hurry to escape<br />

from the impact zone (Bogus was swimming)<br />

few of us got shook but nobody got hurt!<br />

What a moment, this is what we are living for!<br />

Mauruuru (thank you) to the ocean, we live in<br />

heaven!”<br />

Raimana Van Bastolaer has made a career<br />

out of surfing the world’s thickest wave in<br />

Teahupo'o if its big he is normally the first out<br />

there.<br />


Photographer Alexey Shabanov talks about the shot:<br />

"Last summer turned out to be difficult for everyone. Fortunately, my<br />

wife and I spent this time out of town, in a place surrounded by a<br />

forest and the Volga River. It is such a beautiful place, so I couldn’t<br />

resist taking pictures. Flying over one of the islands, I noticed that<br />

the sand dunes beautifully go into the river, creating a fantastic<br />

relief similar to the slopes of mountains. As it was quite an isolated<br />

location it was difficult to find an athlete who was ready to put my<br />

ideas into practice. And that’s when Instagram really helped me!<br />

I posted a request and my old friend, Anton Popov, immediately<br />

reacted and said that he was ready to do anything to get into the<br />

photo (his exact words). A couple of days later we went to the<br />

location to implement this idea. The morning sun very beautifully<br />

emphasised the relief of the sandy beach and created a real feeling<br />

of an athlete going down the mountainside." Red Bull Illume.<br />

Follow Bogus in Instagram<br />

https://www.instagram.com/bogus689/?hl=en<br />


posure<br />


Merrell Sandspur 2 Flip - Men’s $129.00<br />

Designed for all day comfort the Sandspur Flip<br />

is an easy and simple summer choice, providing<br />

extra cushioning and wearability for any or all warm<br />

weather occasions.<br />


Merrell Jungle Moc Funfetti - Men’s and Women’s<br />

$199.00<br />

A celebration in every step. Our 40th Anniversary<br />

Jungle Moc, is our famous low-maintenance shoe<br />

reimagined to commemorate four decades of<br />

breaking new ground on and off the trail.<br />


merrell Jungle Slide - Men’s and Women’s $169.00<br />

It’s finally back, we’ve waited many years for the<br />

Jungle Slide to return. With the same comfort loved<br />

by wearers of the Jungle Moc this slide provides an<br />

even easier slip on to add to the family collection.<br />


Merrell Moab Speed - Women’sl $259.00<br />

The world’s most popular hiking boot taken a step<br />

further. The Moab Speed is faster, lightweight<br />

hybrid. Our ventilated version suitable for hot<br />

summer days on the trail are now back in stock for<br />

both Women and Men.<br />


glerups The Slip-on Forest Honey Rubber $179.00<br />

Looking for a versatile, comfortable, odorless<br />

slipper? Made with 100% wool, take your glerups<br />

on every adventure. Relax and recover in glerups.<br />


hoka CHALLENGER ATR 6 $269.95<br />

This adaptable, all-terrain shoe defies convention —<br />

performing light on the trail and smooth on the street,<br />

thanks to its midsole geometry and outsole construction.<br />

Dynamically designed for versatile traction, its distinctive<br />

outsole has zonal construction to optimize grip and<br />

weight. Developed with broad, closely spaced zonal<br />

lugs, the Challenger ATR 6’s outsole delivers smooth<br />

transitions from one surface to another. This season’s<br />

iteration utilizes recycled UNIFI Reprieve yarn derived<br />

from post-consumer waste plastic.<br />


Keen Targhee Waterproof Mid Boot (Women’s) $289.99<br />

The Targhee collections fit, durability and performance<br />

have earned it a loyal following over the past 15 years.<br />

With a bold new design, this update is tough, lean and<br />

ready or the next chapter of epic adventure.<br />




Keen Targhee Waterproof Mid Boot (Men’s) $289.99<br />

The Targhee collections fit, durability and performance<br />

have earned it a loyal following over the past 15 years.<br />

With a bold new design, this update is tough, lean and<br />

ready or the next chapter of epic adventure.<br />


Keen Ridge Flex Waterproof Boot (Women’s) $349.99<br />

What if every step could feel easier? Meet the e-bike<br />

of hiking boots, built with KEEN.BELLOWS FLEX<br />

technology to flex where you do. We took the trusted<br />

fit of our iconic Targhee hiker and paired it with our<br />

new KEEN.BELLOWS FLEX technology to flex<br />

easier and reduce the energy.<br />


Keen Ridge Flex Waterproof Boot (Men’s) $349.99<br />

What if every step could feel easier? Meet the<br />

e-bike of hiking boots, built with KEEN.BELLOWS<br />

FLEX technology to flex where you do. We took the<br />

trusted fit of our iconic Targhee hiker and paired it<br />

with our new KEEN.BELLOWS FLEX technology to<br />

flex easier and reduce the energy.<br />


KEEN NXIS (woMen’s)<br />

The faster you go, the farther you go, the more you’ll<br />

see. That means more alpine hikes, more sunset<br />

views, and an extra-full camera roll. Splash through<br />

every puddle, hop across rocks, and slide through<br />

scree. Our lightest hiker to date with the KEEN<br />

famous fit and all-terrain tread, NXIS is ready for<br />

whatever your A to B looks like.<br />

• Famous Comfort: Fit 18 years in the making,<br />

our original fit holds your heel firmly in place<br />

while giving your toes room to spread out.<br />

• All-Terrain Tread: Our proprietary horseshoe<br />

tread has deep lugs for extra grip on any trail<br />

surface.<br />

• Iconic Toe Protection: Move fast with<br />

confidence, not stubbed toes. The split toe cap<br />

strikes a balance between protection and feel.<br />

• Waterproof: Thanks to a breathable KEEN.DRY<br />

waterproof membrane that keeps out water.<br />

Available at WWW.KEENFOOTWEAR.CO.NZ FROM 1<br />

MARCH 2022.<br />

RRP: $349.99<br />

KEEN NXIS (Men’s)<br />

The faster you go, the farther you go, the more you’ll<br />

see. That means more alpine hikes, more sunset<br />

views, and an extra-full camera roll. Splash through<br />

every puddle, hop across rocks, and slide through<br />

scree. Our lightest hiker to date with the KEEN<br />

famous fit and all-terrain tread, NXIS is ready for<br />

whatever your A to B looks like.<br />

• Famous Comfort: Fit 18 years in the making,<br />

our original fit holds your heel firmly in place<br />

while giving your toes room to spread out.<br />

• All-Terrain Tread: Our proprietary horseshoe<br />

tread has deep lugs for extra grip on any trail<br />

surface.<br />

• Iconic Toe Protection: Move fast with confidence,<br />

not stubbed toes. The split toe cap strikes a<br />

balance between protection and feel.<br />

• Waterproof: Thanks to a breathable KEEN.DRY<br />

waterproof membrane that keeps out water.<br />

Available at WWW.KEENFOOTWEAR.CO.NZ FROM 1<br />

MARCH 2022.<br />

RRP: $349.99

Marmot Wm’s Beta tank $79.95<br />

On an early morning climb, hike, or run,<br />

and the heat's already working against<br />

you? That's when the lightweight Women's<br />

Beta Tank Top comes in handy. Quickdrying,<br />

moisture-wicking AirExchange<br />

fabric offers exceptional breathability and<br />

keeps you comfortable even if you break<br />

out in a sweat. Its sleeveless style won't<br />

weigh you down or interfere with mobility,<br />

and the mesh racerback detail blends in<br />

with your sports bra.<br />


Marmot Wallace Polo $109.95<br />

When you need to be on your best<br />

behavior, the Wallace Polo Short Sleeve<br />

errs on the side of conservative. Despite<br />

the relaxed look with a three-button<br />

placket, the drirelease performance fabric<br />

allows this lightweight polo to quickly<br />

dry and breathe while maintaining a soft<br />

feel. Flat-locked seams sit comfortably,<br />

minimizing at least one irritation in<br />

uncomfortable dinner table situations.<br />


Marmot Aerobora SS $99.95<br />

When you need to be on your best<br />

behavior, the Wallace Polo Short Sleeve<br />

errs on the side of conservative. Despite<br />

the relaxed look with a three-button<br />

placket, the drirelease performance fabric<br />

allows this lightweight polo to quickly<br />

dry and breathe while maintaining a soft<br />

feel. Flat-locked seams sit comfortably,<br />

minimizing at least one irritation in<br />

uncomfortable dinner table situations.<br />


Marmot Wm’s Kodachrome short $119.95<br />

Climbs, technical hikes, and adventurous<br />

scrambles—the Women's Kodachrome<br />

Shorts with 10-inch inseam prepare you<br />

for all. The abrasion-resistant nylon can<br />

handle the jagged branches and rough<br />

rocks you might encounter, while the<br />

stretch construction and inseam gusset<br />

allow for plenty of mobility. The moisturewicking<br />

DriClime® waistband and quickdrying<br />

fabric help reduce chafing so you<br />

stay comfortable. Keep small essentials<br />

securely stowed in the zipper pocket.<br />


Macpac Men’s Weekender Shorts $109.99<br />

Designed to look like they’re made from<br />

a cotton canvas, these shorts are actually<br />

made from an abrasion resistant, moisture<br />

wicking nylon/elastane blend for functional<br />

performance. Triple stitching increases<br />

strength where it’s needed, six pockets provide<br />

plenty of space for adventure essentials, and<br />

yes, they can be worn any day of the week.<br />


Macpac Limitless Bra $69.99<br />

Seamless, supportive and anti-odour treated, the<br />

Limitless Bra is ideal for low to medium impact<br />

activity. Its body-mapped design increases airflow,<br />

its unique moisture-wicking fabric optimises<br />

performance, and the generous elastane rib<br />

ensures a snug fit that doesn’t compromise<br />

freedom to move. Made with Polygiene®<br />

technology for permanent odour control.<br />


Macpac Women’s Winger Shorts $89.99<br />

These classic go anywhere, do anything shorts<br />

are a redesigned staple. Initially made for hikers<br />

in the 90s, the nylon taslan they’re crafted from<br />

these days is moisture-wicking and water ready,<br />

with a soft peach finish and a small zipped key<br />

pocket built into the side seam. Great for days in<br />

and around the hills, rivers, lakes, and shores. Also<br />

available in sizes and colours for the whole family.<br />



Marmot Featherless Hybrid Jacket $349.95<br />

The lightweight Men's Featherless Hybrid Jacket<br />

will keep you warm and dry in chilly, damp weather<br />

without weighing down you or your pack. 3M<br />

Thinsulate Recycled Featherless Insulation is<br />

made with 75% recycled loose-fill fibers that feel<br />

just as warm as 700 fill power down, but still perform<br />

in wet conditions. DriClime® Bi-Component lining<br />

wicks away moisture to keep you dry.<br />


Macpac Craigieburn Merino Blend Hooded Jackets $199.99<br />

An easy-wearing option with plenty of utility, the merino<br />

blend this jacket is made from combines the natural<br />

warmth and odour resistance of merino wool with the<br />

strength of polyester in a soft terry knit. The result? A<br />

versatile hoody that’s smooth on the outside, cosy on the<br />

inside, and easy to care for.<br />


Macpac Women’s Limitless Hoody $109.99<br />

No matter the activity, the Limitless is ready.<br />

This seamless hoody is body mapped for<br />

performance and made from a nylon/polyester<br />

knit, with strategic mesh that adds structure<br />

and increases airflow. Polygiene® treatment<br />

uses recycled silver to add permanent odour<br />

control, and a touch of reflective detailing<br />

increases visibility after dark.<br />


marmot PreCip ECO Rain Jacket<br />

(Mens & Womens & Wms Plus & Kids) $199.95<br />

Bold colour blocking and athletic inspiration make the<br />

Women's PreCip® Eco Anorak the waterproof shell<br />

you'll want to keep you dry on everything from outdoor<br />

concerts to trips to the trails. Comfort and repelling<br />

rain won't be an issue thanks to the waterproof and<br />

breathable 2.5-layer Marmot NanoPro fabric and<br />

100% taped seams. The attached hood, elastic cuffs<br />

and adjustable drawcord hem add extra weather<br />

protection. When it's time to go, this packable jacket<br />

stuffs into its own pocket.People/Product/Planet®<br />

Sustainably designed and manufactured in keeping<br />

with our commitment to minimum impact and<br />

maximum performance.<br />


Marmot Arch Rock pant $149.95<br />

Head for the hills, trails, and mountains in the<br />

performance-ready Arch Rock Pants. The<br />

abrasion-resistant nylon can handle the jagged<br />

branches and rough rocks you might encounter,<br />

while the stretch construction and inseam gusset<br />

allow for plenty of mobility when you need to<br />

sidestep an obstacle.<br />


RAB FILAMENT HOODY $179.95<br />

Our Women’s Filament Hoody is built<br />

for high-output pursuits in cold winter<br />

conditions. It uses a lightweight,<br />

fast-wicking Thermic recycled<br />

fleece with a 7% elastane content<br />

for plenty of stretch on difficult<br />

ascents. From arduous backcountry<br />

ski tours to extreme alpine ascents,<br />

it’s a supremely versatile mountain<br />

midlayer.<br />


RAB PULSE HOODY $99.95<br />

Lightweight and fast drying, the<br />

Pulse Hoody is a versatile technical<br />

baselayer, ideal for multi-day climbing<br />

and trekking trips.<br />



Macpac Amp H²O 2L Hydration Pack $99.99<br />

Go further, deeper, or higher on your next<br />

training run or hike with this pared back<br />

hydration pack. Its integrated bladder and<br />

pockets are big enough to carry fluids,<br />

snacks and an extra layer. It’s small<br />

enough to keep out of the way, and its<br />

ventilated AirMesh back panel fits snug<br />

so that the only thing moving fast is you.<br />

Also available in a 1L size for young<br />

adventurers ($79.99)<br />


Macpac Child Carriers $399.99 -$499.99<br />

Fostering their love for the outdoors (or satisfying<br />

your own urges to get out there) shouldn’t be<br />

a mission in itself. Macpac’s adjustable child<br />

carriers take the hassle out of how they’re going<br />

to enjoy it with you, and they’ve got two options<br />

for growing families. The Possum is the smaller<br />

of the two and it has 9L of storage on the back.<br />

The larger Vamoose comes with 19L of base<br />

storage, the Sombrero sunshade, Rainbow rain<br />

cover, and a detachable 9L daypack. Both are<br />

rated to 20kg max weight.<br />


marmot Kompressor Comet $79.95<br />

Day hikes, daily bike commutes, and the everyday<br />

grind--we've updated the ultralight Kompressor Comet<br />

pack for maximum comfort and portability, wherever<br />

you find yourself. Ripstop shoulder straps, lightweight<br />

compression straps, and sternum straps keep this<br />

daypack in place without being cumbersome. We made<br />

deeper pockets and added a bike light loop for safety.<br />

The zipper closure makes it easy to reach in and grab<br />

what you need. The Kompressor Comet stows into its<br />

own internal pocket for use as a stuff sack on the go.<br />


Macpac Torlesse Hiking Pack Range $229.99-$499.99<br />

This tried and true design is ideal for every kind<br />

of hike. Its single compartment keeps everything<br />

simple, the combination of Cordura® and ripstop<br />

nylon offers durability you can count on, and the<br />

variety of adjustable harnesses across the range<br />

offer hours of support. Each pack has external<br />

pockets and an integrated rain cover.<br />

Available in 30–65L sizes<br />


marmot Kompressor Comet plus $119.95<br />

We've taken our popular ultra-light Kompressor pack<br />

and added more features and space, while retaining<br />

the same amazing compressible performance and<br />

comfort. A front organization pocket is perfect for maps,<br />

lamps, and other on-hand essentials. The entire thing<br />

packs into its own lid!<br />



BACKPACK $229.95<br />

When you want the freedom of<br />

baggage-free travel for a lightweight<br />

city break or a weekend away, the<br />

cabin-compatible Escape Flight 36<br />

is the zero-fuss way to get there. As<br />

a purpose-built cabin backpack, the<br />

Lowe Alpine Escape Flight 36 puts<br />

security and accessibility at the heart<br />

of its design.<br />



BACKPACK WOMEN'S $429.95<br />

Light and comfortable, the ventilated<br />

AirZone Trek ND33:40 women’s hiking<br />

backpack is ideal for lightweight hutto-hut<br />

trips and long-distance summer<br />

hiking. The women’s fit AirZone ND33:40<br />

hiking pack provides a supportive, cool<br />

and comfortable carry. It features our<br />

award-winning, fully adjustable AirZone+<br />

ventilated carry system, with patented<br />

FormKnit technology for all-day<br />

comfort, however intense the hike.<br />



Patagonia Black Hole® Duffel 70L $249.99<br />

Made from lightweight yet extremely durable, 100%<br />

recycled polyester ripstop that’s weather-resistant,<br />

abrasion-resistant and highly packable. It easily swallows a<br />

week’s worth of stuff, yet with padded removable shoulder<br />

strap, and removable backpack straps it's ergonomic for<br />

carrying comfort. There's even exterior daisy chains for<br />

lashing any extras you amass while away!<br />


Patagonia Arbor Roll Top Pack $249.99<br />

The Arbor Roll-Top Pack accommodates various loads,<br />

with more room when unrolled and slightly more water<br />

protection when closed tightly; includes quick side access to<br />

15" laptop sleeve and side stash pocket for small items. It's<br />

Fair Trade Certified sewn with solution-dyed and 100%<br />

recycled fabrics to save water and reduce CO2 emissions<br />

compared to conventional methods.<br />


RAB ESCAPE KIT BAG LT 50 $159.95<br />

Our Escape Kit Bags have evolved from our<br />

Expedition Kit Bags, but with a focus on lightweight<br />

durability for adventure travel. Designed with a<br />

handle that converts to a harness it can be worn as<br />

a backpack for hauling between terminals or short<br />

walks to your campsite.<br />


osprey Rolling Transporter 40 $349.99<br />

Carry-on sized duffel for organising and<br />

protecting smaller gear or clothing items. Ideal<br />

as a standalone, or to complement larger<br />

duffels, and great for a weekend adventuring.<br />

Features include a HighRoad Chassis with<br />

a lightweight aluminium frame, extendable<br />

handle and oversized wheels that handle most<br />

surfaces, TPU coated heavy-duty fabrics and<br />

overlapping rainflap zips to protect your gear<br />

from the elements plus multiple handles for<br />

easy handling.<br />


osprey Sojourn 60L Wheeled Convertible<br />

Travel Pack $499.99<br />

Proven and rugged HighRoad Chassis<br />

for smooth rolling and a torso adjustable<br />

stowaway, padded harness with tensioned<br />

back panel for comfort when carrying the<br />

pack backpack style. Features include a<br />

retractable handle, padded grab handles,<br />

a top zipped liquids pocket, internal and<br />

external compression straps, internal<br />

organisation pockets, daisy chains to attach<br />

extra gear and the ability to add an Osprey<br />

Daylite Daypack for flexibility and extra<br />

storage (sold separately).<br />


osprey Transporter Global Carry-On Bag<br />

$229.99<br />

Streamlined design meets most global<br />

carry-on size regulations and is full of<br />

travel-specific features. Padded handles<br />

plus a shoulder strap, opens out flat for<br />

easy packing and unpacking. Internal<br />

dividers keep your clothes and gear<br />

organised, while on the outside you'll<br />

find a toiletries pocket, a front panel<br />

organisation pocket, a laptop sleeve and a<br />

hidden RFID-safe pocket for your passport<br />

and wallet.<br />



The Macpac Dragonfly 400<br />

On my last hike to the Whakapapaiti Hut, I took the<br />

new Macpac Dragonfly 400 sleeping bag. A lightweight<br />

three-season bag, the compression style stuff pack<br />

and weighing in at only 731g meant it took up very little<br />

room in my pack.<br />

During my previous trips to the backcountry hut, I had<br />

found the overnight temperature extremely variable.<br />

Although when the fire is stoked the huts are warm, the<br />

minute the fire goes out the temperature can plummet.<br />

The Macpac Dragonfly 400 adjustable face hole and<br />

hood system is super simple and as well as providing a<br />

good holding spot for my “pillow” it also pulled in super<br />

snug, keeping my neck and body free from the cold air.<br />

The mummy fit is designed to maximise heat while<br />

minimising weight and I found I liked the feel of the<br />

bag snug around my legs. The Dragonfly is purpose<br />

built for minimal weight so they have really stripped<br />

back the features. This means no weight is wasted on<br />

unnecessary gimmicks, so the zip only runs a third of<br />

the way down. This is ideal for warm nights but my feet<br />

often run hot so I am yet to see if I have any issues on<br />

a warmer night.<br />

Without a doubt for me, the feature I love the most is<br />

the material it is made with. I have a tendancy to toss<br />

and turn at night and I am usually very conscious of<br />

the noise a sleeping bag makes every time you move,<br />

however both the inner and outer fabric makes minimal<br />

sound, which I loved.<br />

The sleeping bag comes with a compression style stuff<br />

pack as well as a mesh bag for storage when unused<br />

for long periods of time. This helps maintain loft.<br />

The technical details:<br />

• Filled with 400g of 800 loft HyperDRY RDS<br />

Goose Down which gives great compressibility for<br />

a smaller pack size.<br />

• Inner lined with bluesign® certified nylon<br />

• Outer made with its Pertex® Quantum using their<br />

Y Fuse technology to increase durability and<br />

performance around snow.<br />

• Water resistant HyperDRY RDS goose down<br />

• Adjustable face hole and hood<br />

• Box baffles<br />

• Concealed drawcords<br />

• Increased fill in the draft collar<br />

• 3-coil ⅓ zip<br />

• Temperature Rating: Comfort 1°C / Limit -5°C /<br />

Extreme -22°C<br />

• Weight: 731g<br />

RRP: $699.99<br />

MACPAC CLUB PRICE: $489.99<br />


Compression style stuff pack means<br />

it packs up small<br />

When you are not using your bag,<br />

keep it in the mesh storage bag to<br />

help mainatin loft<br />

Simple adjustable hood area helps<br />

keeps out the cold<br />

Marmot Tungsten 2P $549.00<br />

Ready to adventure with you mile after mile, the freestanding Tungsten<br />

2-Person Tent blends durability, roominess, and a livable design. Strategic<br />

clip placement offers more interior volume after a long day on the mountain.<br />

If a downpour approaches, the colour-coded "easy pitch" clips and poles<br />

make for a quick set up, and the seam-taped, catenary-cut floor and<br />

full-coverage vented fly add to its weather protection. Dual doors allow<br />

easy entry and exit with vestibule storage space around both doors. The<br />

lampshade pocket stows your headlamp and the included abrasion-resistant<br />

footprint round out the details that make life on the trail easier.<br />


Marmot catalyst 2p $499.o0<br />

Designed as a roomy, livable tent that doesn’t weigh you down, the<br />

freestanding Catalyst 2-Person Tent has all the ideal features for a casual<br />

camping trip. Its strategic clip placement offers more interior volume for<br />

stretching out after a long day of adventuring. The seam-taped catenarycut<br />

floor and full-coverage vented fly add to its weather protection, plus the<br />

included footprint protects this camping tent from abrasions. Stash your<br />

pack, poles, and other gear in the two vestibules and tuck a headlamp into<br />

the lampshade pocket for ambient light at night.<br />



Macpac Uber Synthetic Quilt $99.99<br />

This cosy synthetic quilt is made for moment’s that<br />

could use a little extra warmth. Its nylon outer can be<br />

wiped, brushed or shaken clean. The micro padding<br />

fill is 100% recycled, and its pillow-shaped stuff sack<br />

makes the quilt useful even when it’s stashed away.<br />

Think picnics at the beach, starry nights around the<br />

campfire, and crisp mornings on the deck.<br />


EPE Comas Swag Bag -5 °C Sleeping Bag $199.00<br />

Purposely designed for rugged adventures and<br />

oversized for comfort. The EPE Swagbag features<br />

a hollow fibre layered filling for superior thermal<br />

efficiency when warmth is needed the most. .<br />


kiwi camping Rover Lite 3cm Self-Inflating Mat $109.00<br />

Compact to pack and carry, the Rover Lite self-inflates<br />

in minutes. The tapered design can fit in a sleeping<br />

bag, 1830mm long and 550mm wide.<br />


sea to summit Aeros Premium travel Pillow $59.99<br />

Inflatable, ergonomic, designed to provide exceptional<br />

comfort when sleeping in an upright position while<br />

keeping bulk and weight to a minimum. High strength<br />

TPU bladder, shaped with bulbous arms for more neck<br />

support than traditional neck pillows and the centre is<br />

extra thin, so it doesn't apply pressure to the back of<br />

your neck when pressed into a headrest. Features an<br />

adjustable neck closure. 93gm.<br />


Kiwi Camping Tuatara Hard Shell Rooftop Tent $4,499.00<br />

The low-profile Tuatara HS is built to handle serious adventures from summit to<br />

sea. Ripstop polycotton makes it ideal for backcountry conditions and the pop-up<br />

gas struts enable instant pitching.<br />



Kiwi Camping hub lantern $84.99<br />

Powerful and functional, the<br />

Hub LED Lantern provides<br />

an impressive 360 degrees of<br />

super bright LED light. Charge<br />

your devices or invert and hang<br />

upside down.<br />


Ceramic Fluxring Cookpot 1.5L $159.95<br />

Take backcountry cooking to the next<br />

level. Our 1.5 FluxRing Cook Pot is a<br />

backcountry essential for solo or group<br />

cooking, and a new ceramic coating<br />

allows for amped up cooking and even<br />

easier cleaning. Gone are the days of<br />

boring camp food sticking to the bottom<br />

of your pot. It’s time to elevate your next<br />

backcountry experience.<br />


MiniMo $329.95<br />

MiniMo delivers UNMATCHED simmer<br />

control, metal handles, and a low spoon<br />

angle for easy eating! Starting with the<br />

innovative new valve design, MiniMo<br />

delivers the finest simmer control of any<br />

upright canister system on the market.<br />

Thanks to our proprietary regulator<br />

technology and enhanced regulator<br />

diaphragm, MiniMo ensures this consistent<br />

performance down to 20ºF (-6ºC). Its<br />

redesigned cooking cup, the perfect<br />

combination of size, sturdy metal handles,<br />

and optimized height, provides users with<br />

an easy-to-eat experience.<br />


Gasmate Turbo Butane Stove & Pot Set $139.00<br />

For quick boiling when you need it! A super<br />

lightweight aluminium stove with stainless<br />

steel burner, piezo ignition, stabilising feet and<br />

accessories all packaged in a mesh carry bag.<br />


jetboil STASH Cooking System $299.95<br />

The lightest and most compact jetboil<br />

ever. We know your dreams are big<br />

and ambitious. Which is why we<br />

designed the all-new Stash to be<br />

lightweight and compact, maximizing<br />

your pack space without sacrificing<br />

that iconic Jetboil performance. At<br />

7.1 oz or 200 g, the .8L Stash is 40%<br />

lighter than the .8L Zip.<br />


Flash 2.0 $249.85<br />

Blistering boil times come standard<br />

on our industry-leading Flash. By<br />

modelling the combustion and<br />

selecting materials to optimize<br />

efficiency, we were able to create<br />

the fastest Jetboil ever—cutting a<br />

full minute off our best boil time. The<br />

Flash cooking system lights with<br />

the click of a button and in just 100s<br />

provides two cups (500ml) of boiling<br />

water for cocoa, coffee, instant soup<br />

or a gourmet freeze-dried meal.<br />



sunsaver classic 16,000 mah solar<br />

power bank $119.00<br />

Built tough for the outdoors and with a<br />

massive battery capacity you can keep<br />

all your devices charged no matter where<br />

your adventure takes you.<br />


Summit Skillet $119.95<br />

The nonstick Summit Skillet packs the performance and<br />

punch of home cookware into a compact, lightweight,<br />

elegant, solution designed for the backpacker set. The<br />

ceramic-coated nonstick aluminum construction heats quickly<br />

and evenly, expanding the potential of backcountry cooking.<br />

Coated with , PFOA-free ceramic nonstick, the skillet<br />

releases eggs, pancakes, and other foods easily, making<br />

cleanup a breeze. A perfectly angled turner nests into the<br />

handle, helping you flip foods without fuss. The skillet pairs<br />

perfectly with Jetboil-regulated cooking systems and the<br />

Jetboil pot support. Skillet measures 8 by 8.5 by 1.9 inches<br />

and weighs 10.6 ounces.<br />


pacsafe RFIDsafe V100 RFID Blocking Bifold Wallet $60.00<br />

This sporty looking wallet keeps your cash and cards safe<br />

from unauthorised transactions with its RFID blocking<br />

material. It has 9 card slots, a zip-secure cash sleeve<br />

and comes with an adjustable cut-resistant wrist strap to<br />

ensure it stays with you.<br />


hydroflask 24oz (710mL) Lightweight<br />

Wide Mouth Trail Series: Topaz, Slate,<br />

Obsidian, Clay $99.99<br />

Our Lightweight Trail Series flasks<br />

are 25% lighter, making it easier to<br />

take your hot or cold drink wherever<br />

your adventure takes you.<br />



kiwi camping Ripper Stool $27.99<br />

A lightweight, compact stool with integrated<br />

carry strap for easy transportation. Wide<br />

feet are ideal for instant seating on soft<br />

ground. Features durable polyester with<br />

sturdy steel frame.<br />


KEA KIT: Outdoor Survival System $279.99<br />

Be fully prepared for your next adventure with KEA KIT. The compact, modular<br />

and durable survival kit that includes everything you need & nothing you don’t.<br />




The first thing you’ll notice is that the front label on their pouches have changed<br />

for the better by adding Health Star Ratings and energy, protein, fat and carbs<br />

per pouch. They have also improved the readability of our back labels.<br />

Back Country Cuisine is available at leading retailers.<br />

For more information or to find your nearest stockist visit:<br />

www.backcountrycuisine.co.nz<br />

tasty chicken mash $9.49 - $13.99<br />

With smoky flavoured freeze dried chicken, cheese<br />

and vegetables.<br />

3.5 Health Stars - Gluten Free<br />

Available small serve (90g) or regular (175g)<br />


Apple & Berry Crumble $13.19<br />

A sweet mix of freeze dried apples and berries topped<br />

with a delicious gluten free cookie crumb.<br />

3 Health Stars - Gluten Free<br />


TIRED<br />

ARMS?<br />




INSTANT PASTA $4.89<br />

Just add boiling water for perfectly cooked<br />

pasta.<br />

3.5 Health Stars<br />

Sizes – Family 120g<br />


Epic coffee Drip Filter’s<br />

Single from $2.99, 10 Pack from $24.99<br />

Your favourite new adventure essential – specialty coffee,<br />

roasted in micro-batches and loaded into adventure-proof<br />

drip filters. Proceeds from every product sold are donated to<br />



Guilt free dinning since 98!<br />

backcountrycuisine.co.nz<br />

<br />

<br />

Hey Piña 440ml: Fruited Sour 4.5%<br />

ABV $8.99<br />

For decades the pineapple, or 'Piña',<br />

in Spanish, was South America's<br />

precious little secret. The now<br />

famous sweetness blends sublimely<br />

with the vibrant raspberry, balanced<br />

with zesty lime.winter.<br />


Mango Tango 440ml: Fruited Sour 5%<br />

ABV$8.99<br />

Mango Tango is a magical fusion of<br />

tropical flavours. Mango and Passionfruit<br />

form an elegant connection, embracing<br />

with a vibrant and playful expression of<br />

aromas. Sweet and sour perfection.<br />


Berrylicious 440ml: Fruited Sours 4.5%<br />

ABV $8.99<br />

Packed full of Blackberries, cherries<br />

and raspberries. Berrylicious is vibrant<br />

and juicy, with a perfect mix of sweet<br />

and sour berry flavours, balanced with<br />

light tartness and subtle floral and<br />

earthy overtones.<br />



Like a ‘perfect storm’, we have seen a dramatic growth and<br />

development in online stores over the past 5 years. Now as we are<br />

made to keep our ‘distance’, online, ecommerce takes on a whole<br />

new meaning and value. We are dedicating these pages to our client’s<br />

online stores; some you will be able to buy from, some you will be able<br />

drool over. Buy, compare, research and prepare, these online stores are<br />

a great way to feed your adventure addiction while you are still at home.<br />

Never have a dead phone<br />

again! Because now you can<br />

charge straight from the Sun<br />

with SunSaver. Perfect for<br />

that week-long hike, day at<br />

the beach, or back-up for any<br />

emergency. Check us out at:<br />

www.sunsaver.co.nz<br />

www.packraftingqueenstown.com<br />

Specialising in<br />

small group guided<br />

packrafting trips and<br />

courses from our base<br />

in Queenstown New<br />

Zealand.<br />

www.adventuresouth.co.nz<br />

Whether you enjoy<br />

cycle trails, road<br />

cycling, mountain<br />

biking or walking,<br />

<strong>Adventure</strong> South NZ<br />

can help you to explore<br />

New Zealand at<br />

your own pace.<br />

Full-service outfitter selling hiking<br />

and mountaineering gear and<br />

apparel, plus equipment rentals.<br />

Specialising in ski & snowboard<br />

touring equipment new & used;<br />

skis, boards, bindings, skins,<br />

probs, shovels,transceivers &<br />

avalanche packs.<br />

www.smallplanetsports.com<br />

Our motto is “Going the<br />

distance” and we pride<br />

ourselves on providing top<br />

quality outdoor and travel<br />

equipment and service<br />

that will go the distance<br />

with you, wherever that<br />

may be.<br />

www.trekntravel.co.nz<br />

Gear up in a wide selection of durable, multifunctional<br />

outdoor clothing & gear. Free Returns. Free Shipping.<br />

www.patagonia.co.nz<br />

Stocking an extensive range<br />

of global outdoor adventure<br />

brands for your next big<br />

adventure. See them for travel,<br />

tramping, trekking, alpine and<br />

lifestyle clothing and gear.<br />

www.outfittersstore.nz<br />

Specialists in the sale of Outdoor Camping Equipment, RV,<br />

Tramping & Travel Gear. Camping Tents, <strong>Adventure</strong> Tents,<br />

Packs, Sleeping Bags and more.<br />

www.equipoutdoors.co.nz<br />

Our Mission<br />

To bring like-minded adventurers together for epic journey’s<br />

fuelled by top-notch coffee. All while supporting the things<br />

we care about and restoring nature.<br />

www.epiccoffee.co.nz<br />

Our very own online store where<br />

you will find hard goods to keep you<br />

equipped for any adventure.<br />

www.pacificmedia-shop.co.nz<br />


Ultra lightweight running shoes, made by runners. No<br />

matter where the trail takes you, Hoka One One will<br />

have you covered.<br />

www.hokaoneone.co.nz<br />


Unlock your adventure horizon with Packraft New Zealand.<br />

Online supplier of Kokopelli packrafts, accessories and<br />

adventure inspiration. Shop online or contact us for expert<br />

advice for everything packrafting; hike-raft, bike-raft, hunt-raft,<br />

whitewater, fishing, canyoneering, urban and travel.<br />

www.packraftnewzealand.co.nz<br />

Bivouac Outdoor stock the latest in quality outdoor<br />

clothing, footwear and equipment from the best<br />

brands across New Zealand & the globe.<br />

www.bivouac.co.nz<br />

Shop for the widest range of Merrell footwear, apparel<br />

& accessories across hiking, trail running, sandals &<br />

casual styles. Free shipping for a limited time.<br />

www.merrell.co.nz<br />

Whether you’re climbing mountains, hiking in the hills<br />

or travelling the globe, Macpac gear is made to last<br />

and engineered to perform — proudly designed and<br />

tested in New Zealand since 1973.<br />

www.macpac.co.nz<br />

Living Simply is an outdoor clothing and equipment<br />

specialty store in Newmarket, Auckland. Your go-to place<br />

for quality footwear, packs, sleeping bags, tents, outdoor<br />

clothing and more.<br />

www.livingsimply.co.nz<br />

Offering the widest variety,<br />

best tasting, and most<br />

nutrient rich hydration,<br />

energy, and recovery<br />

products on the market.<br />

www.guenergy.co.nz<br />

Fast nourishing freeze dried food for adventurers.<br />

www.backcountrycuisine.co.nz<br />

Jetboil builds super-dependable<br />

backpacking stoves and camping<br />

systems that pack light,<br />

set up quick, and achieve<br />

rapid boils in minutes.<br />

www.jetboilnz.co.nz<br />

Supplying tents and<br />

camping gear to Kiwis<br />

for over 30 years, Kiwi<br />

Camping are proud to<br />

be recognised as one of<br />

the most trusted outdoor<br />

brands in New Zealand.<br />

www.kiwicamping.co.nz<br />

With stores in Clyde and<br />

Cromwell, Bike it Now! is<br />

your access point to the<br />

Central Otago Bike trials: T<br />

> Lake Dunstan Trail<br />

> Otago Central Rail Trail<br />

> Roxbourgh Gorge<br />

and more...<br />

www.bikeitnow.co.nz<br />

Excellent quality Outdoor<br />

Gear at prices that can't<br />

be beaten. End of lines.<br />

Ex Demos. Samples. Last<br />

season. Bearpaw. Garneau.<br />

Ahnu. Superfeet.<br />


Boutique Sister Resorts<br />

The Rarotongan Beach Resort & Lagoonarium<br />

Cook Islands.<br />


TOP Destination<br />

to Visit in<br />

2022!<br />

Experience the Cook Islands’ Signature Beach Resort<br />

• Rarotonga’s best 4 star Full-service beach resort | 111 rooms/suites/bungalow/villas<br />

• Prime, secluded white sandy Aroa Beach | Best snorkelling in Aroa Lagoonarium Marine Sanctuary<br />

• On Rarotonga’s southwest sunshine coast | Sizzling sunsets<br />

• Extensive free activities - stand-up paddleboarding, snorkelling (all-tide), kayaking, tennis, gym,<br />

beachfront swimming pool, learn to dance the hula, make a lei, play the ukulele, husk a coconut<br />

• Kids & Teens Stay + Play FREE (to 16) | Free Moko Kids Club (4-11) | Free Teen Zone (12-16)<br />

• Captain Andy’s Beach Bar & Grill l Function + conference facilities<br />

• SpaPolynesia | Seventh Heaven All-Inclusive + Over The Moon Wedding Packages<br />

• Sister resort to adjacent Sanctuary Rarotonga-on the beach<br />

+ Aitutaki Lagoon Private Island Resort (both adults-only)<br />

Slip off your watch, your shoes, your cares and immerse yourself in Paradise<br />

Aroa Beach + Lagoonarium | Rarotonga | COOK ISLANDS<br />

toll free 0800 727 686 | P (+682) 25800<br />

| info@therarotongan.com<br />

www.TheRarotongan.com (Live Chat avail.)


The Cook Islands are open...<br />

The Cook Islands, on the 14th of January, opened to New Zealand for quarantine free travel! No MIQ, just a negative test and you are<br />

on your way to warm seas and sun filled beaches. But there is a lot more to the Cook Islands than proximity, stunning beaches, and<br />

swaying palms, it is also a mecca for adventure; from its deep-sea fishing to its shallow lagoons for snorkeling and kiting. The Cook<br />

Islands will keep you busy every day for as long as you want. Obviously, there are all the standard tourist ‘’to-do’’ options; the cultural<br />

village, the coconut tree climbing demonstration, the glass bottom boats and trips out to smaller more remote islands. But here we will<br />

outline a few adventures that you may not be aware of...<br />

Group Paddle image thanks to KiteSUP Chasing big ones! Image by Marlin Queen<br />

Image thanks to <strong>Adventure</strong> Cook Islands<br />

Kiteboarders have known for years<br />

what an amazing destination the<br />

Cook Islands are for any wind-based<br />

sport. But it is also an amazing place<br />

to Learn to kiteboard because of the<br />

Cook Islands shallow lagoon and<br />

warm steady trade winds it is the<br />

perfect place to learn to kiteboard.<br />

There are companies such as Ariki<br />

<strong>Adventure</strong>s and KiteSup just to<br />

mention a couple, who can give you<br />

an introduction to kiteboarding, where<br />

quickly you will have the opportunity to<br />

experience the feeling of flying with an<br />

inflatable kite and get you well on the<br />

road to becoming proficient, in warm<br />

safe water? The local tutors know the<br />

best times, the best wind, and the tides<br />

to make the learning experience fun.<br />

As you would expect, with the<br />

protection of the reef, the lagoon<br />

is ideal for paddleboarding; with<br />

very little swell, crystal-clear water<br />

that is full of marine life. On your<br />

paddleboard, which you can rent or<br />

take a tour, you can access a range of<br />

secluded islands and sandy parts of<br />

the reef. There are several companies<br />

that rent out paddleboards as do many<br />

of the hotels and resorts. However,<br />

if you are not a ‘’go it alone’’ kind of<br />

guy or you just really want a add bit<br />

of local knowledge there are those<br />

running paddleboard tours like Lagoon<br />

Explorer.<br />

As with all South Pacific islands<br />

fishing can be as much fun for<br />

the really experienced down to the<br />

complete novice. The Cook Islands<br />

offer a lot of options like game fishing<br />

with Marlin Queen fishing charter.<br />

Tuna, marlin, Mahi mahi, they openly<br />

brag they are out to get the big ones<br />

and by the look of their website and<br />

images they do just that. But there<br />

are smaller operators like Reef and<br />

Beach fishing tours which is a unique<br />

concept. Mata George (aka Sunshine)<br />

gives a half hour talk first about the<br />

tide, water, and wind in Rarotonga. He<br />

also tells of what not to touch or walk<br />

on to protect the coral and visitors'<br />

own safety. Then an explanation of<br />

the different types of bait for different<br />

types of fishing, what times to go out<br />

and where to find the fish, pure local<br />

knowledge.<br />

Warm clear water and an abundance<br />

of sea life leads to one major activity<br />

- diving. In the Cook Islands some––<br />

resorts, such as The Rarotongan<br />

Beach Resort and Lagoonarium,<br />

offer in house dive lessons, dive<br />

experience and certification in their<br />

hotel pool. There are also a range of<br />

dive operators who can not only take<br />

out qualified divers to experience the<br />

pristine underwater world, but you<br />

can also get PADI certified both in the<br />

lagoon and for the open water.<br />

There are also a range of great options<br />

for trekking. There are bush walks<br />

you can do by yourself, but it is not<br />

like New Zealand and if you wanted<br />

to do a guided trek, like to the top of<br />

Mt Rameau, which takes about 3-4<br />

hours then it is suggested you go with<br />

a local guide company like <strong>Adventure</strong><br />

Cook Islands. Wandering off on your<br />

own might seem like fun, but there is<br />

a lot of private land, and it is easy to<br />

get lost.<br />

Rarotonga is not a very big place, and<br />

you can easily rent a scooter to get<br />

around, (make sure you get a licence<br />

from in town they are only $29.50) but<br />

a nicer, quiet option is to bike. There<br />

are again a range of rental options<br />

plus some of the resorts have them<br />

for hire. But you can do tours, it’s not<br />

mountain biking as we know it with<br />

downhill single track but it’s a way to<br />

see the island and interact with the<br />

locals. Like anywhere biking is a nice<br />

way to meet the people, smell the air<br />

and take in the view.<br />

Basically, the Cook Islands have<br />

been looking after tourist for a lot of<br />

years, they are well established and<br />

well prepared to make sure you can<br />

basically do whatever it is you want<br />

to do, easily, professional, and safely.<br />

The hard part is choosing from so<br />

much on offer!<br />


Anyone can learn to kiteboard- image thanks to KiteSUP -<br />

Image thanks to <strong>Adventure</strong> Cook Islands-<br />



ISLANDS Top tips...<br />

Vanuatu’s outer islands are rich in culture, landscape<br />

and adventure, but before you book your flights and<br />

hop over to this tropical paradise, it’s important to get<br />

some tips to help you understand the nuance of this<br />

family of islands. Here are eight things you need to<br />

know before booking your Vanuatu escape.<br />

Get used to island time: Make sure you don’t bring<br />

your traditional approach to time and tourism to<br />

Vanuatu. Sure, you may be told your charter flight<br />

will leave the outer island airport at 2pm, or that your<br />

driver will pick you up at 11am, but don’t be mad if<br />

nobody arrives on time. It’s not done out of spite, or<br />

laziness, there’s just no reason to rush. If you always<br />

keep a good book tucked away in your backpack,<br />

or a deck of cards, you’ll be just fine. Have a couple<br />

of buffer days at the end of your trip as well, just in<br />

case!<br />

Tell your friends and family you’ll be back soon,<br />

you’re going off-grid: It’s so easy to romanticise<br />

going off grid – lying back under coconut palms,<br />

floating in crystal clear waters. Being disconnected<br />

from the cyber world can be both anxiety inducing<br />

and incredible freeing. However, going ‘off-grid’ in the<br />

outer islands of Vanuatu<br />

means more than just no internet. It often means no<br />

electricity either.<br />

While the capital city of Port Vila and main tourism<br />

towns have power and modern amenities, this is not<br />

the case everywhere. Unplugging is part of the charm<br />

of the remote islands of Vanuatu, but it does mean<br />

you need to be prepared. Pack some spare batteries<br />

for your camera and let your friends and family know<br />

you may be out of contact for a few days. You can<br />

get a local sim card, but they don’t work everywhere.<br />

Understand that a lack of electricity will affect your<br />

ability to have a hot shower, run a fan in the heat of<br />

the day and flush a toilet. This is a great opportunity<br />

to let it all go, soak up the sun and the culture, and<br />

sink into Vanuatu life.<br />


Pack your own snorkel<br />

gear: If you’re a keen diver,<br />

you’ll be overwhelmed by<br />

just how many reefs there<br />

are to explore. You won’t<br />

always be able to source<br />

gear to rent, so if you love<br />

to explore the underwater<br />

world, it’s best you bring<br />

your own snorkel and<br />

goggles. You never know<br />

who you might meet under<br />

there: a sleepy dugong,<br />

a friendly turtle or an<br />

excitable pod of dolphins.<br />

Pack your hiking boots:<br />

Vanuatu’s outer islands<br />

aren't just isolated beaches<br />

and fresh coconuts. There<br />

are hundreds of hikes and<br />

volcanoes and waterfalls<br />

that will take your breath<br />

away. Good (waterproof)<br />

hiking boots are essential<br />

if you’re the adventurous<br />

type. Wet weather gear<br />

wouldn’t be a bad idea<br />

either– you never know<br />

when the tropical rains<br />

might hit.<br />

If you’ve got a sweet tooth, stock up on the main islands: There<br />

are few stores dotted around the outer islands, but they don’t always<br />

have the variety of snacks you may be craving – although the fruit<br />

will be unbelievably good. If you fly into Santo or Port Vila, stock up<br />

there. We recommend Aelan chocolate http://aelanchocolate.com/ –<br />

it’s a local social enterprise that makes the most delicious chocolate,<br />

with cocoa grown from the volcanic soil across the outer islands!<br />


Book most of your activities when<br />

you get there: I know it’s tempting to<br />

book everything before you go – to<br />

get on that plane with a clear plan and<br />

a strict itinerary. But you can’t do that<br />

for the outer islands of Vanuatu. And<br />

that’s part of the magic. It’s part of the<br />

essence of this network of islands.<br />

It’s not about how much you can jam<br />

pack into a small amount of time. It’s<br />

not about aligning things this way and<br />

that. It’s about immersing yourself into<br />

the way of life of the Vanuatu people.<br />

Your loose plans will change. You’ll<br />

learn about an activity that wasn’t<br />

listed online. If you come with a vague<br />

idea but nothing set in stone, you’ll<br />

leave yourself open to the unexpected<br />

adventures that await in Vanuatu. You’ll<br />

also see the most beautiful side of the<br />

people who love to care and share – so<br />

let them!<br />

Get ready to dance: Often, when<br />

you have the privilege of witnessing a<br />

traditional cultural dance in an outer<br />

island village, a smiling local will drag<br />

you into the circle, teach you how to<br />

move, and encourage you to dance<br />

and sing. Embrace this! Move your hips<br />

and stomp your feet and laugh with the<br />

children. Once you allow yourself to let<br />

go, you’ll be dancing your way across<br />

the islands.<br />

Be Prepared<br />

While adventure is why we are here, drama is not. Realising that you<br />

are going into remote areas where there is very little infrastructure,<br />

adjust how you prepare your gear to suit this reality. Ensure you have<br />

a good medical first aid kit, take plenty of cash (there are no ATMs in<br />

the remote islands), insect repellents, bag liners for wet days, pack<br />

spares of necessary items (batteries), medication and so on. Grab<br />

what you need before you go.<br />

More information can be found www.vanuatu.travel<br />



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