Mt Malita – Bryant Range2022 05 01 Mt Malita 2

Sunday 1 May 2022

On a partly cloudy day, a group of ten gathered at the end of Aniseed Valley Road, about 17km from the SH6 turnoff. We crossed a concrete ford across the Roding River with the water about 15cm deep, so some received wet feet. The footbridge that was here was washed away during flooding in February 2018, but a new vehicle bridge is soon to be built, making for all-weather access.

We filled in the intentions book by the information panel then followed Summit Road which quickly gained height beside slopes recently harvested of pines. The gradient then eased off and we reached a three-way junction where we took the middle direction up a steep and rough track. We rejoined another road at a grassy junction where we enjoyed a stop in sunshine. After this it was one steady zigzag through pleasant regenerating bush then a steep path up to the grassy 959m summit amongst limestone rock outcrops, taking just over two hours altogether.

We took in the nice views of Waimea Plains and Tasman Bay overlooking the nearby Barnicoat Range, then walked down the summit ridge for five minutes and visited the small 2-bunk Mt Malita Hut tucked away out of sight on the bush edge. The unlocked hut is owned by Nelson City Council, but is not for overnight use.

It was still too early for lunch, so we descended to the nice grassy junction for our stop. From here we took a short dogleg down Burridge Road, back to the three-way junction. Further down we then detoured down Old Malita Road through pines and native bush, linking back to Summit Road near the start.

A short and sharp return trip of 4½ hours, covering 11.4km was a good workout for all.

The participants were Robert (leader and scribe), Jenny, Tony, Sue J, Arif, Liz, Donell, Maria, Rob and visitor Ashleigh.