Uncle Roddus Tramping Diary: Tramp No 62
Mt Owen - 21-23rd October 2006
This was my first attempt to get onto Mt Owen in the Kahurangi national park. It was a three day trip with the CTC with our intention to head in from the Southern end via Bulmer Creek on day one, camp at Bulma Lake, up onto the tops and across and down to Branch Creek hut and then out down the Fife River back to the cars on day three.
We left town on Friday night and stayed the night at Murchison before heading in early on Saturday morning. The weather forecast was for light rain all weekend, so our prospects were grim to say the least. Leaving the car about 9:20am on a grey and cool morning, four trampers headed off along a well used and formed track following the Owen river upstream until we reached the bottom of sunrise ridge. From there we cross the Owen and head up the true right of Bulmer Creek, again following a good track. Two hours in from the car the rain set in, a light but soaking drizzle. We stopped for lunch at the head of Bulmer Creek before climbing up through the bluffs and having to use a rope ladder(Now Removed) at one point to get us up onto the top of Bulmer creek. from here it was about another hour to Bulmer lake, where we set up camp.
Sunday brought no respite to the conditions and so all originals plans were scrapped and we went for a wander partially onto the Castle Basin area of Mt Owen, with out being to see the summit with the cloud sitting on the tops and wandering around most of the time in light snow. An early retreat back to our sodden camp and dinner and early night hiding in our tents from the rain.
Monday again showed no improvements and visibility being pretty low, we gave up trying to find the Sunrise Ridge track and just headed back out the same way we came in, albeit with much higher waterways to cross.
|Donning Precipitation protection equipment as the rain arrives|
|The Bluffs above Bulmer Creek|
|Second lunch amongst the Bluffs.|
|Setting up camp.|
|About to head onto the lower reaches of Mt Owen|
|Lunch as the snow starts.|
|Not the most pleasant tramping conditions.|
|The rope ladder.|
|In Bulmer Creek, Saturday.|
|Bulmer Creek on Monday, at the base of the Bluffs.|
|The rivers were a bit higher on the way back.|
|The rivers were a bit lower on the way in.|
|And there was a bit of nice scenery.|