Enjoyable Plan B tramping
Mt Arthur – Sunday 25 November 2018
The long range forecast for Sunday was miserable-bordering-on-terrible all week, which didn’t bode well for our planned Mt Arthur summit bid. But not to worry - there is a Plan B lurking patiently in the wings. Things started improving, and by the time Sunday morning rolled around, it was actually looking rather promising, and nine people fronted up for the walk.
From the Flora Saddle carpark we set off up the wheel-chair-grade track through the forest to Mt Arthur Hut for morning tea, before optimistically heading higher. However a cold wind stripped us of warmth and thick cloud afforded no views, so we took the sensible option and scuttled lower, taking the track through the tussock and dracophyllum and thus down to the historic Flora Hut. After an early lunch (carefully guarding our food from the patrolling eagle-eyed weka waiting to pounce on unsecured morsels), we headed further into the park and out to the rock bivvies - our alternative offering.
Upper Gridiron, a cosy wee hut built into the small rock overhang, with its gorgeous stained glass window, and outside hearth and swing seat. Lower Gridiron, a rock overhang on a grander scale, with its upper storey sleeping platform and spacious sheltered outdoor living area. The rock bivvies are definitely pretty special, and one of the highlights of Kahurangi NP.
Instead of continuing on to the Tablelands, we turned around and retraced our steps to Flora Hut, then completed the earlier Arthur loop back to the Flora Saddle carpark. It was a very enjoyable day of Plan B tramping ... the predicted rain didn’t eventuate; in fact there was not a drop of precipitation to be seen.
We were: Diane (leader), Pete, Robyn, Joy, Odette and newcomers Daniel, Dave, Beth, and Moshe.