Monty, Mick and Gaz had a wintery week in the Mt Aspiring region, honing rope skills and practising crampon techniques. They ascended Mt Rolling Pin in beautiful weather and enjoyed superb snow conditions. The glaciers are well filled in after a good snow winter which makes travel and navigation nice. The next day, they attempted the “ramp” route on Mt Aspiring, but had to turn back after 8 or so rope lengths on the ramp due to rapidly deteriorating weather. However, it did give their skills a good workout and the climbing was enjoyable – again excellent snow/ice conditions for climbing.
The following day in extremely windy conditions, they traversed the Bonar Glacier, grabbed a quick ascent of Mt French and descended down the well filled in Quarterdeck Glacier to French Ridge hut. They enjoyed sunning themselves on the outside deck, and enjoyed the slightly warmer weather. Due to a poor weather outlook for the mountains the team decided to head out to Wanaka for a shower – in the evening, the trio, iris and 6 ‘yankee’ lads (who where also up at Colin Todd hut) got together at the Alpinism base for a BBQ of superb meat, salad and cold ones.
They hit the rock climbing next day, doing 7 routes.
On the last day of their trip they got and early start and headed over to the Remarkables for some further cramponing practise. It was gale force winds up on Single cone ridge, so they abandoned the summit, but had a great morning anyhow. A beer was had at the Famous Cardrona Hotel on the way home.
Before heading back to Aus, Mick and Monty sussed out some local tourism entertainment for some inspiration, and attempted to track down a Queentown sculpture artist.
As usual, a lot packed into a week