On Sunday 20th September, Chris Louth, Ian Morris, Barry James, Beth and David Loe, Andrea Cockerton, Clare Quested, Paula Garnham (trip report) and guest Katherine Doherty set out on an intrepid trip to the Champion and United mine trails led by Chris.
Chris prefaced the trip, stating it would "be steep". This was repeated three times in the course of the first climb. It was.
The tramp itself was mainly through mineral belt country and we had a couple of ridges to go over. We started off following the Roding River, then up the United Creek track.
What followed was some fairly tough climbing to our lunch break on the ridge between the two mines then a steep and slippery descent till we hit the Champion Tramway track.
A total of five river crossings meant wet feet, and we lost Barry at Champion Mine after number four when Chris stated "There's no track up the hill from here"
After crossing Champion Creek the route involved some dense bush bashing and much fallen tree sliding under or climbing over and much to Andrea's glee everyone bore minor wounds when we finally gained the ridge. Following the ridge up, we stopped briefly at Mt Malita Hut before heading down to a forestry road and back to the cars, fording the river one last time.
The whole walk was just over 17 km with an impressive elevation gain of 1440 m, and took 5.30 moving time, 7 hours total. The weather was sunny, warm and dry, ideal for a day in the hills.
- Trip Grade: Fit
- Trip Duration: Day Trip
- Trip Area: Nelson