Sunday 16 February 2020
Strong norwesters inland forced this diversion from Mt Barrosa to this lower trip. Norman had learned of a new track on the flanks of the Russell Range that could be combined with the Thirteen Mile Bush Track of old. A conspicuous DoC sign-board sent us up a vehicle track in tussock and scrub country, then a further sign showed the way up to Point 1211 or down through dracophylum scrub to the beech forest. With the wind trying to remove our hats, no one was keen to go higher and we were happy to reach the calm of the forest, then the ideal lunch spot at the bright orange Benmore Hut with its 200 litre steel water barrel. For future visitors, the hut has a burner that takes 220g tall butane aerosol cans.
After a leisurely lunch our team walked out the usual way on a dry, mud-free track. Thank you Norman for introducing us to this pleasant circuit and letting us meet your son, Adam from the North Island and local daughter, Emma.
Above the Thirteen Mile valley track onto the Russell Range for a new angle to view the Gap (hidden) and Mt Oxford in the far distance. Photo courtesy of Kerry Moore
We were: Norman Burden (leader), Adam Burden, Emma Burden, Wendy McCaughan, Allison Maccoll, Kim Ashmore, Donna Grice, Kerry Moore (KM)