Nydia Track Crossover, Marlborough Sounds
Saturday 29 & Sunday 30 July 2023
We travelled four per car to the Rai Valley turnoff, where we did a car swap-over. We took our boots and packs with us and left our after-tramp clothes and snacks behind.
The southbound Sobos drove to Duncan Bay, while the northbound Nobos headed to Kaiuma Bay. Both parties then donned packs and boots and headed for the afternoon rendezvous of DOC’s Nydia Lodge.
It was a simply stunning winter’s day and the Sobos took longer than DOC’s allotted time of 6 hours because of all the lengthy stops. Pipi Beach for morning tea, Nydia Saddle for lunch, Nydia Campsite for afternoon tea, and then multiple stops all along the beautiful coastline of Nydia Bay to the lodge.
On top of that, there were stops for botanising and bird-watching, looking for the eel, and getting out the pruning-saw to cut offending branches from trees that were down over the track.
The Nobos had a longer drive than the Sobos and also took their time in the beautiful mixed exotic and native forest, arriving at the lodge three quarters of hour in advance of the Sobos. The view from the Kaiuma Saddle was the highlight of their day.
Nydia Lodge sleeps 50 spread over 9 bunkrooms, with an ablution block, fully equipped kitchen/lounge building, and all lit up at night by electric light from the generator. What a treat! And we were the only ones there.
We awoke on Sunday to another sublimely spectacular day. There was a frost on the ground, and the nearby jetty was icy but it was the perfect spot for 101 photos to be taken of the stunning reflections in Nydia Bay.
Both groups left the lodge soon after 9 and walked together for the half hour walk up to the main track, where we parted ways, with the Sobos heading left and the Nobos right.
At the end of the day, both parties ended up at their original cars, again with those doing the Duncan Bay leg taking longer than DOC’s time.
In conclusion, what a terrific weekend! It was the ideal winter tramp, and belonging to a tramping club makes it possible to easily do these crossover trips where the trailheads are so far apart.
The Sobos were Diane (leader & scribe), Marian, Lynley and Felicity. The Nobos were Sue (leader), Alison, Maureen and Roger.