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195704 [2018/11/06 02:13]
tyreless
195704 [2018/11/08 02:21] (current)
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 This would seem to be so obvious that mention of it is unnecessary. And yet, generally speaking, the great majority of members (and prospectives) seem content to take their monthly ration from the hands of the few. Now, despite how talented these regular contributors may be, a situation such as this is not always in the best interests of the Club. All too easily we can tend to become somewhat too confined almost without realising it. Conversely, as the field of contributors widens, each with his own individual material and style, so the interest-value of the Magazine must widen with it; and for the same reasons a healthy balance between the different types of items can more easily be maintained. This would seem to be so obvious that mention of it is unnecessary. And yet, generally speaking, the great majority of members (and prospectives) seem content to take their monthly ration from the hands of the few. Now, despite how talented these regular contributors may be, a situation such as this is not always in the best interests of the Club. All too easily we can tend to become somewhat too confined almost without realising it. Conversely, as the field of contributors widens, each with his own individual material and style, so the interest-value of the Magazine must widen with it; and for the same reasons a healthy balance between the different types of items can more easily be maintained.
  
-Now just in case you're saying, "But I haven'​t got any literary talent",​ let us hasten to reply that firstly, it's probably untrue (nearly everyone who can read and write has potential literary talent) and secondly, it's not so important anyway. Don't be misled by any highbrow interpretation of that word "​literary"​. This is a Club Of bushwalkers, ​nbt journalists,​ and we will certainly not use the blue pencil because your contribution does not rate with Walter Murdoch'​s essays. In fact, our aim is to reflect your bushwalker personalities to the fullest degree, so you see, you just have to be your natural selves, nothing more than that.+Now just in case you're saying, "But I haven'​t got any literary talent",​ let us hasten to reply that firstly, it's probably untrue (nearly everyone who can read and write has potential literary talent) and secondly, it's not so important anyway. Don't be misled by any highbrow interpretation of that word "​literary"​. This is a Club Of bushwalkers, ​not journalists,​ and we will certainly not use the blue pencil because your contribution does not rate with Walter Murdoch'​s essays. In fact, our aim is to reflect your bushwalker personalities to the fullest degree, so you see, you just have to be your natural selves, nothing more than that.
  
-Having got that off our chests, you may well ask what sort of material is needed. The answer is simple. Anything and everything that is of interest to bushwalkers,​ and to our own Club members in particular, in humorous or in serious vein and all shades between. We could mention things like trip accounts, information on walks and walking country, gossip items, personal bits and pieces and jokes concerning members and walking, humorous tales and verse, conservation items, ​artictes ​on fauna, flora and geology, cartoons, and of course, letters to the Editor (what scope __that__ gives you!). You can probably think of a few more as well, so you've got a ton of stuff to work on.+Having got that off our chests, you may well ask what sort of material is needed. The answer is simple. Anything and everything that is of interest to bushwalkers,​ and to our own Club members in particular, in humorous or in serious vein and all shades between. We could mention things like trip accounts, information on walks and walking country, gossip items, personal bits and pieces and jokes concerning members and walking, humorous tales and verse, conservation items, ​articles ​on fauna, flora and geology, cartoons, and of course, letters to the Editor (what scope __that__ gives you!). You can probably think of a few more as well, so you've got a ton of stuff to work on.
  
 It's mainly a case of becoming "​magazine-conscious"​. Maybe you've just completed an interesting or adventurous trip - well, the Club would like to hear about the doings. Or perhaps you know about some good walking country that should be exploited. Don't forget the little bits of humour - they'​re always popular, and useful for filling up odd corners (jot them down as soon as you get home). Let's have that hunk of bushwalking philosophy you've been wanting down in print; and to Leaders, a special appeal is made (see March issue) - get some advance publicity by advertising your coming walk in these pages. It's mainly a case of becoming "​magazine-conscious"​. Maybe you've just completed an interesting or adventurous trip - well, the Club would like to hear about the doings. Or perhaps you know about some good walking country that should be exploited. Don't forget the little bits of humour - they'​re always popular, and useful for filling up odd corners (jot them down as soon as you get home). Let's have that hunk of bushwalking philosophy you've been wanting down in print; and to Leaders, a special appeal is made (see March issue) - get some advance publicity by advertising your coming walk in these pages.
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 After this the President left the Chair, (which was taken by Tom Moppett) in order to move two motions. The first was that a committee of four be elected to assist the Membership Secretary. The four would not be members of the Club committee. The work of the new committee would be to look after new members. Many had drifted away because they were not properly looked after and it was quite beyond the Membership Secretary, however energetic, to shepherd them all into the Club. The work should be spread and it was necessary to have people on the membership Committee who did not have to attend Club Committee meetings. The scheme had worked well in pre-war days. After this the President left the Chair, (which was taken by Tom Moppett) in order to move two motions. The first was that a committee of four be elected to assist the Membership Secretary. The four would not be members of the Club committee. The work of the new committee would be to look after new members. Many had drifted away because they were not properly looked after and it was quite beyond the Membership Secretary, however energetic, to shepherd them all into the Club. The work should be spread and it was necessary to have people on the membership Committee who did not have to attend Club Committee meetings. The scheme had worked well in pre-war days.
  
-The motion was supported by Jim Brown, who stressed the need of individual attention to prospectives. Jack Wren was afraid that the members would revert to their slothful habits and leave it all to the membership committee instead of being friendly to, and interested in, the prospectives. Kath Brown thought that some would be attentive to new members and some wouldn'​t,​ but that the membership secretary should have three or four people that could be relied upon. John Quigley ​saidhe ​heartily endorsed the proposal. New members did feel a bit strange - like an actor on the stage - and would appreciate some attention. The drive for membership should be going on continually. If every member aimed to introduce one new member in 12 months it was possible to inflate numbers by 75 per cent in a year, as had been done in an organisation to which he belonged. Grace Aird said it was impossible for one person to do the job really well, but it should not all be left to the membership committee - other people should be helping them. Jess Martin stressed the importance of parties keeping together and getting to know each other on trips. A special effort should be made to be friendly in the bush. Edna Stretton said that, though it was the duty of every member to help, she was very grateful for the motion.+The motion was supported by Jim Brown, who stressed the need of individual attention to prospectives. Jack Wren was afraid that the members would revert to their slothful habits and leave it all to the membership committee instead of being friendly to, and interested in, the prospectives. Kath Brown thought that some would be attentive to new members and some wouldn'​t,​ but that the membership secretary should have three or four people that could be relied upon. John Quigley ​said he heartily endorsed the proposal. New members did feel a bit strange - like an actor on the stage - and would appreciate some attention. The drive for membership should be going on continually. If every member aimed to introduce one new member in 12 months it was possible to inflate numbers by 75 per cent in a year, as had been done in an organisation to which he belonged. Grace Aird said it was impossible for one person to do the job really well, but it should not all be left to the membership committee - other people should be helping them. Jess Martin stressed the importance of parties keeping together and getting to know each other on trips. A special effort should be made to be friendly in the bush. Edna Stretton said that, though it was the duty of every member to help, she was very grateful for the motion.
  
 So it seemed that practically everyone agreed that a membership committee would be a good thing. But this was no ordinary meeting, it was the Annual General Meeting, and one word was enough to start a really good argument. Who, asked Allan Hardie, elects, or selects, the Committee? Some thought the membership secretary should select. Some thought the meeting should elect. Tom Moppett, from the chair, amended the motion to accord with Club procedure. The Membership Secretary should select and the Committee appoint. Others thought four assistant membership secretaries should be appointed. The only one who didn't mind whether the committee was elected, selected, appointed, or just set up, was Brian Harvey, the mover. Motions were formed, amended, ruled out of order and generally scrambled until about half an hour later it was decided that four assistant membership secretaries be appointed. So it seemed that practically everyone agreed that a membership committee would be a good thing. But this was no ordinary meeting, it was the Annual General Meeting, and one word was enough to start a really good argument. Who, asked Allan Hardie, elects, or selects, the Committee? Some thought the membership secretary should select. Some thought the meeting should elect. Tom Moppett, from the chair, amended the motion to accord with Club procedure. The Membership Secretary should select and the Committee appoint. Others thought four assistant membership secretaries should be appointed. The only one who didn't mind whether the committee was elected, selected, appointed, or just set up, was Brian Harvey, the mover. Motions were formed, amended, ruled out of order and generally scrambled until about half an hour later it was decided that four assistant membership secretaries be appointed.
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 No milk and Sunday paper delivery - next year perhaps! No milk and Sunday paper delivery - next year perhaps!
  
-And during all this came the tents... Big ones, small ones, golden, green and "used to be __some__ colour"​ in every conceivable shape and location. With the tents came the walkers - big ones, small ones etc. including tots, visitors and prospectives to a total of 189 bods - we think a record. (This figure hasn't been checked by Nan Bourke, our Auditor, but I think we might believe Malcolm ​beause ​he was very careful and used all his fingers and toes.+And during all this came the tents... Big ones, small ones, golden, green and "used to be __some__ colour"​ in every conceivable shape and location. With the tents came the walkers - big ones, small ones etc. including tots, visitors and prospectives to a total of 189 bods - we think a record. (This figure hasn't been checked by Nan Bourke, our Auditor, but I think we might believe Malcolm ​because ​he was very careful and used all his fingers and toes.
  
 When the last ice chest, lounge chair and baby cot had been humped down the ridge, daylight began to disappear, swirling into a sunset flush and rushing through the western gap like water down a drain. On the darkened earth, cooking fires winked like stars and on the darkened sky, stars winked like cooking fires. Nature at the top of her gumtree shifted into a more comfortable crotch and settled down for the night. When the last ice chest, lounge chair and baby cot had been humped down the ridge, daylight began to disappear, swirling into a sunset flush and rushing through the western gap like water down a drain. On the darkened earth, cooking fires winked like stars and on the darkened sky, stars winked like cooking fires. Nature at the top of her gumtree shifted into a more comfortable crotch and settled down for the night.
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 No-one knew. Answer of course is "You take care of the pinneys and the pants will take care of themselves"​. No-one knew. Answer of course is "You take care of the pinneys and the pants will take care of themselves"​.
  
-Next idea, to see if 8 new members could erect a tent, was effectively white anted when one of them mislaid the tent pegs. No-one seemed too sure what happened after that. Some other people came and made appeals to the audience for ideas on how these should be dealt with. Most proffered ideas were "hang 'em from the yard arm high" or "boil 'em in pitch",​ and couldn'​t be used because the necessary equipment wasn't available so it was finally settled to set each of them a labour to be performed by eleven o'​clock the next morning. Some of these were quite dangerous like discovering how many bods per tent and who snored. The task arousing most comment was to find a pair of the Bagley Beetle, species Red-bummed. The new member Lynette Baber, a keen field naturalist hadn't heard of this creature and immediately challenged it'​s ​existance. Bob Duncan who was the first person to identify the beetle was called on to verify the fact and did so conclusively by producing one he happened to have with him. Judy of course denies being a Bagley Beetle, but her slacks (and face) were definitely __red__.+Next idea, to see if 8 new members could erect a tent, was effectively white anted when one of them mislaid the tent pegs. No-one seemed too sure what happened after that. Some other people came and made appeals to the audience for ideas on how these should be dealt with. Most proffered ideas were "hang 'em from the yard arm high" or "boil 'em in pitch",​ and couldn'​t be used because the necessary equipment wasn't available so it was finally settled to set each of them a labour to be performed by eleven o'​clock the next morning. Some of these were quite dangerous like discovering how many bods per tent and who snored. The task arousing most comment was to find a pair of the Bagley Beetle, species Red-bummed. The new member Lynette Baber, a keen field naturalist hadn't heard of this creature and immediately challenged it'​s ​existence. Bob Duncan who was the first person to identify the beetle was called on to verify the fact and did so conclusively by producing one he happened to have with him. Judy of course denies being a Bagley Beetle, but her slacks (and face) were definitely __red__.
  
 This initiation seemed to prove the truth of the statement made by one hardened type. "Just you give them new members half a chance, and they'​ll initiate you!" This initiation seemed to prove the truth of the statement made by one hardened type. "Just you give them new members half a chance, and they'​ll initiate you!"
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 ---- ----
  
 +===== Seven Weeks In New Zealand - Part 2. =====
  
-SEVEN WEEKS IN NEW ZEALAND ​Part 2. +- Dot Butler.
-Dot Butler+
-Having spent a week sightseeing and climbing in the North Island, we returned to our headquarters at Wellington, then at 8.30 next +
-morning caught the "​Hinemoa"​ for Christchurch and the South Island, +
-We took up a great deal of deck space sorting out our gear and provisions, to the great interest of all the passengers, then 50% of the party went to sleep on a bale of life belts while Donnie (the Man +
-with the Mo) doctored up his blistered face and brooded over his blistered heel and I wrote our diary up to date. We sent a telegram from the boat to Garth saying where we would meet him at Christchurch,​ +
-and after landing a mutual search went on around the city and its camping grounds, but eventually seekers and sought met and Garth drove us out to the motor camp, where we spent the night. Next morning the Coulter chariot arrived and we sent the day drivinground the Port +
-Hills, then, after being very hospitably entertained at several homes, +
-we caught the train that night for Dunedin and the Coulter flat, which +
-was to be our headquarters for a couple of days. It was now Christmas +
-Eve. We did some necessary shopping and railed off a fortnight'​s +
-provisions for our Mt. Cook session, hoping that they would arrive safely or we should starve to death - that wouldn'​t take long, especially for George and Snow. +
-On Christmas Day we went up Flagstaff Hill - a thousand or so +
-ft. hill at the back of the town, and had a wonderful view of Dunedin +
-spread out below. We had Christmas dinner up there, and hoped our friends back home were having just as good down the Kowmung. Home for afternoon tea - crystalised fruits and nuts and beer - after which +
-the boys flaked out. They revived in time to have a hot bath (Gee, this is a tough tripl) - Snow read a book for half an hour in the +
-bath - then had tea and at 10 p.m. he tottered off to bed again - +
-because we had to be up at 6 in the morning (Shamel) to catch the bus to Te Anau and the Milford Sound walk. +
-We left Dunedin 8,30 a.m. on Boxing Day - this time we managed +
-to locate the bus departure place and catch the bus with 10 minutes to spare, in place of the usual minus 2 seconds, which was somewhat phenomenal. We whizzed out of the lovely little green town on a beautiful fine sunny day, and so to the township of Te Anau on the +
-lake of the same name. Here we got into a launch - about 20 Track +
-walkers and 14 deer shooters - and ran for several hours up the lake. The deer--shooters Were a powerful rugged bunch of blokes with the wild winds and storms of their wild world making their hair stand on end and whistling through their wild whiskers. Snow and I contemplated the gentle pink and white types of humanity who were to be our compan- +
-ions on the track and wished we were going with the deer hunters. As +
-_ . +
-19. +
-a Matter of fact, after a few whiskies with them (the water for which was obtained by tying a green plastic bucket to a string and hurling it overboard into the lake), and a few rounds of old time waltzing with one of the leaders of the band on the rain-swept deck in parkas +
-and hobnails, an invitation was extended to come with them, but as +
-this invitation didn't seem to include the mob I had to decline. One +
-of the younger chaps played a piano-accordian and we roared out songs with them and stamped round the boat in the paaLng rain and had a marvellous time. We unlaoded them and their guns and their tucker in tea chests at various points along the way. The launch would draw in as close as possible to some rugged, rain-festooned point in the Rounds and a little row boat would be loaded with gear and four or five bads, then a Tess of the torm Country lass in a blue sou'​wester - probably the Captain'​s wife - would punt them to shore with one oar and they would unload, then she would return and the boat would be hoisted to +
-the davitts and as we chugged on our way the small figures would get smaller and smaller and be blotted out finally by a mist of rain. +
-At last we said goodbye to the last of the lUsty lot and got out at our wharf and tripped up the track to Glade House and a floral tablecloth and a knife-fork-spoon-andfork and another spoon for soup. The bunks had sponge rubber mattresses and pillows and neatly folded +
-blankets and we all had been issued with A sheet and pillowslip sleeping bag in a cellophane cover and in the girls' dormitory out came the +
-talcum powder and the lace undies and the tapered. trousers and ornamental jung.ers and the nail files and the lipstick, and I thought of the +
-wild wild deerstalkers in their sou'​westers in the wild wild weather +
-with their whisky and hard tack for tea and hobnailed boots for a pillow and felt sissy. However, we soon all got friendly with the boys and girls on the track and it was like saying goodbye to part of the family when the three days were up. +
-The first day was fine and it was a lovely walk through beech +
-forests with glimpses of watercourses and waterfalls through the trees. There was enough sunshine for photos, so you shall see the results in due Course. That night we stayed at Pompalona hut after about ten +
-miles of walking. We ate a huge meal and had quite a gay evening of dancing and singing and games. now organised the show with Donnie running a close second and excelling himself as a-Wit, and if noise is any indication of quality then it was a first class entertainmept,​ and all that got broken was one window. +
-Next day another 10 miles to Quinton hut. It" spotted with rain +
-but'​was pleasant walking. We climbed several thousand feet to McKinnon +
-Pass where we were whipped by sago hail and all huddled in a little tin hut for lunch, then down to the Quinton hut for a hot shower and tea. And what a mea1:11 Nobody raised an eyebrow at third helpings, so we just went right ahead. There was a piano and one of the boys played, so we had a gay evening. +
-Next day it really rained.- The annual rainfall at Milford is 250" (i.e. about 21 feet: 7 yds.1!: He11121) and we had it all. +
-We sloshed the 13 miles of track through Mud and watercourses called trails, with high mountains all around festooned with plunging waterfalls. At 4.30 we got into a launch which took us to Milford Hostel - the most magnificent White Elephant in the southern hemisphere they +
-20. +
-tell us. Here we lined up transport to take us 20 odd miles to Howden hut turn-off; then we had a hot bath on the house, and a meal for  +
-5/- in the staff kitchen, then piled our gear into the taxi and so off - into the deluge and the night. - +
-Going through the Homer tunnel was an experience. It is a huge unlined hole about three quarters of a mile long and the water just cascaded through the roof like a firehose. Pouring down over one of the surrounding iron grey mountains I counted over fifty waterfalls. The sky and the mountains and the river were all one pouring deluge. In the midst of all this the taxi man somewhat unhappily unloaded us at 7.30, and Us not knowing where the hut was except that a signpost pointed 2i miles to Lake Howden up the mountain and down the other side and look for the hut on the northern end of the lake. It was going to +
-be dark by the time we got there, and there was an atmosphere of haste and tension as we plugged up into the deluge. The track was eroded some three or four feet deep and roared with water as We squelched down it with increasing speed - and suddenly there was the hut right under +
-our noses with smoke coming out of the chimney. We dripped inside, +
-Everything we owned was wet; you could Wring half the water supply of the qouth Island out of our boots and socks and parkas, and the other +
-half was inside our packs. We learnt that the annual rainfall just hereabouts is 400" (i.e. 11 yards. Think of that:). '​Inthis hut we +
-stayed all the next day while the rain darkened the universe, and we +
-felt like fish at the bottom of deep pond. There were nine other bods in occupation who helped us pass the time away. We planned that next +
-day, come what may, we would push off or our schedule would be upset. +
-We voted against going over the high pass of the ao-uteburn track and instead went down the easier Greenstone valley. The weather was kind +
-and we had a wonderful day. The track skirts Lakes Howden and Mac- +
-Kellar, then goes quietly through clean open beech forest past Here Lake and so to Elfin Bay ferry wharf. A beaut 'big tin shed gave us shelter for the night and we didn't get up till the ferry Was almost due at 11 a.m. There were crowds of holidaymakers and trampers on the boat. (This is from George, with his passion for detail: "The ferry SO+ "​Earnslaw",​ holds 1100 passengers. Its displacement is 300 tons- twin-screw - triple expansion steam engines - power steering. I +
-got that from the Captain. I tried to get more from the engineer, but he only said Har Hum.") Most of the tramping types got off at Kinloch and caught tourist coaches up the valley. When we were unloaded at Glenorchy on the other side of the lake everyone piled into two buses, but as we had to buy stores we reluctantly watched them depart, with +
-visions of ourselves having to walk 10 to 15 miles with a-fortnight'​s +
-provisions to the Rees Bridge, then 4 or 5 hours up the Rees Valley to our hut. We did a rapid bit of shopping at thestore, with the result +
-that over the next fortnight we found ourSelves with far too much +
- ​butter to put on far too few biscuits',​ then off we rushed and got a lorry which had offered to take us to the Rees Bridge. The tucker was +
-just stuffed into our packs and we each carried our ex-Milford-Trackmosquito-nets filled with food too, and as we staggered off up the Valley, down came the rain. We walked in swimming trunks and bare feet +
-to keep our long pants and socks dry, and in neck-to-knee parkas were a +
-unique and intriguing sight for a 'party oP 3 trampers who encountered us on the track. They told us. 25-Mile hut was still several hours  away - and us hoping we were almost there: - so when we came to a +
-shepherd'​s hut within another mile we decided that was our destination for the night and settled ourselves in forthwith. It was a nice corn- +
-2l. +
-fortable little hut with bunks and mattresses and a good fireplace. Before leaving we gave it the ultimate in spring cleaning to show our gratitude. +
-Next day in fine weather we walked the couple of hours to 25 - +
-Mile hut set high up on a terrace with the Rees river winding below +
-like scattered green ribbons and Paradise ducks flapping their way in +
-pairs up and down the valley, and flocks of sea gulls (or lake gulls) soaring and drifting aimlessly in the clear air like bits of white +
-paper dropped from an aeroplane. The hut water supply comes from 25- +
--Mile creek which drops into the deepest, narrowest gorge you can poss- +
-ibly conceive. Arathusa Canyon is just catsmeat in comparison. It +
- ​reminds me of Kubla Kahn , and here the sacred river ran +
-. Through caverns measureless to man Dbwn to a sunless sea."​ +
-A ToUng married couple in occupation (N.Z.A.C, members) had seen +
-us coming up the valley and had the kettle on for a "​cuppa"​ as soon as +
-we, got in. We spent the afternoon sunbaking and snoozing among the sunnyltussocks. BeautIl +
-; Well continue our adventures in the South Island in the next +
-     IN I =I IM  M    +
-Naughty. Mr. Matthews. After all, the pains to which the comperes went +
-to provide a "​clean"​ show, he skulks behind the curtain with the +
-RampANT ANTS, and produces an awfully blue remark. The worst of it +
-is-,7 with Matthews you can't be quite sure just how innocent his intent. +
-!Vonny Renwick was given the Hercularean task of seeing that the character to play the Black Duke in the opera arrived in sober con- +
- ​ditipn.--But the producer was worried. "I know Yvonne,"​ he said, "I +
- ​said.Inpt,​more than half an hour'​.,​ but after half an hour she'​ll +
- ​starttO_say,​ 'I wonder if I ought to go in there after hie?' " +
- Just as-he producer was getting all worked up about it, tp:py arrived beforP 3 p.m. - with the Black Duke in ridiculously teetetal state. Not as Black as he's painted. +
-'​At..ohe'​stage on saturday, Ray Bean was lamenting encroaching senitity-and explaining he'd "​mislaid"​ his pack. Sympathy-Was strenuouslresi;​sted. "​No",​ he said regretfully,​ "It isn't my memory. I'm getting ol.,d if I can't take two schooners of Windsor beer without losing a rack"​. +
-0400011140 +
-Well, now that we'Vd slaughtered the Re-Union, let's set Our sights on the EASTER PARADE: . IL +
-Heather Joyce says her ti,​lptvBENDETHRA,​CAVES has ECU the possibilities if half her probabilitiecome off. So to anyone with a problematical mind, thiS should be:​right.down their alley. Come and join in the fun and games at Bendethra - 1. t.s sure to be different:​11 +
-There are some folks who know how the date of Easter is fixed, but for Paddy it is all wrapped up in mystery and magic, The fixing of the date certainly goes back to the pre-Christian Era and is connected with the magic rites associated with planting ceremonies of Ipring in the northern hemisphere and timed by the lunar calendar. +
-All of the above is merely a verbose preface to a thought that. we usually have a moon With us at Easter, hut this year most of us will be asleep before the moon domes up. +
-A few last minute thoughts for Easter. Unexpected new shipment of "​Chuffer"​ toves in - price 2.13.6. +
-Quart tins of hellite .. 3/9 tin +
-Alumin.ium'​Rcrew Top Jars 2/6 each Good supplies of dried vegetablesready. +
-"​Proofall"​proofing compound 4/11 -- and "​Drumstick"​ wax 2/-, for reproofing garments or tent.. +
-Note to qkiers, +
-Bookings of 1:cis, stocks, & Boots for Queen'​s Birthday Weekend and rest of season open on 2nd April, +
-New qki gear pribe list now ready.+
  
 +Having spent a week sightseeing and climbing in the North Island, we returned to our headquarters at Wellington, then at 8.30 next morning caught the "​Hinemoa"​ for Christchurch and the South Island.
 +
 +We took up a great deal of deck space sorting out our gear and provisions, to the great interest of all the passengers, then 50% of the party went to sleep on a bale of life belts while Donnie (the Man with the Mo) doctored up his blistered face and brooded over his blistered heel and I wrote our diary up to date. We sent a telegram from the boat to Garth saying where we would meet him at Christchurch,​ and after landing a mutual search went on around the city and its camping grounds, but eventually seekers and sought met and Garth drove us out to the motor camp, where we spent the night. Next morning the Coulter chariot arrived and we sent the day driving round the Port Hills, then, after being very hospitably entertained at several homes, we caught the train that night for Dunedin and the Coulter flat, which was to be our headquarters for a couple of days. It was now Christmas Eve. We did some necessary shopping and railed off a fortnight'​s provisions for our Mt. Cook session, hoping that they would arrive safely or we should starve to death - that wouldn'​t take long, especially for George and Snow.
 +
 +On Christmas Day we went up Flagstaff Hill - a thousand or so ft. hill at the back of the town, and had a wonderful view of Dunedin spread out below. We had Christmas dinner up there, and hoped our friends back home were having just as good down the Kowmung. Home for afternoon tea - crystalised fruits and nuts and __beer__ - after which the boys flaked out. They revived in time to have a hot bath (Gee, this is a tough trip!) - Snow read a book for half an hour in the bath - then had tea and at 10 p.m. he tottered off to bed again because we had to be up at 6 in the morning (Shame!) to catch the bus to Te Anau and the Milford Sound walk.
 +
 +We left Dunedin 8.30 a.m. on Boxing Day - this time we managed to locate the bus departure place and catch the bus with 10 minutes to spare, in place of the usual minus 2 seconds, which was somewhat phenomenal. We whizzed out of the lovely little green town on a beautiful fine sunny day, and so to the township of Te Anau on the lake of the same name. Here we got into a launch - about 20 Track walkers and 14 deer shooters - and ran for several hours up the lake. The deer shooters Were a powerful rugged bunch of blokes with the wild winds and storms of their wild world making their hair stand on end and whistling through their wild whiskers. Snow and I contemplated the gentle pink and white types of humanity who were to be our companions on the track and wished we were going with the deer hunters. As a matter of fact, after a few whiskies with them (the water for which was obtained by tying a green plastic bucket to a string and hurling it overboard into the lake), and a few rounds of old time waltzing with one of the leaders of the band on the rain-swept deck in parkas and hobnails, an invitation was extended to come with them, but as this invitation didn't seem to include the mob I had to decline. One of the younger chaps played a piano-accordian and we roared out songs with them and stamped round the boat in the pouring rain and had a marvellous time. We unloaded them and their guns and their tucker in tea chests at various points along the way. The launch would draw in as close as possible to some rugged, rain-festooned point in the Sounds and a little row boat would be loaded with gear and four or five bods, then a Tess of the Storm Country lass in a blue sou'​wester - probably the Captain'​s wife - would punt them to shore with one oar and they would unload, then she would return and the boat would be hoisted to the davitts and as we chugged on our way the small figures would get smaller and smaller and be blotted out finally by a mist of rain.
 +
 +At last we said goodbye to the last of the lusty lot and got out at our wharf and tripped up the track to Glade House and a floral tablecloth and a knife-fork-spoon-and-fork and another spoon for soup. The bunks had sponge rubber mattresses and pillows and neatly folded blankets and we all had been issued with a sheet and pillowslip sleeping bag in a cellophane cover and in the girls' dormitory out came the talcum powder and the lace undies and the tapered trousers and ornamental jumpers and the nail files and the lipstick, and I thought of the wild wild deerstalkers in their sou'​westers in the wild wild weather with their whisky and hard tack for tea and hobnailed boots for a pillow and felt sissy. However, we soon all got friendly with the boys and girls on the track and it was like saying goodbye to part of the family when the three days were up.
 +
 +The first day was fine and it was a lovely walk through beech forests with glimpses of watercourses and waterfalls through the trees. There was enough sunshine for photos, so you shall see the results in due course. That night we stayed at Pompalona hut after about ten miles of walking. We ate a huge meal and had quite a gay evening of dancing and singing and games. Snow organised the show with Donnie running a close second and excelling himself as a wit, and if noise is any indication of quality then it was a first class entertainment,​ and all that got broken was one window.
 +
 +Next day another 10 miles to Quinton hut. It spotted with rain but was pleasant walking. We climbed several thousand feet to McKinnon Pass where we were whipped by sago hail and all huddled in a little tin hut for lunch, then down to the Quinton hut for a hot shower and tea. And what a meal!!! Nobody raised an eyebrow at third helpings, so we just went right ahead. There was a piano and one of the boys played, so we had a gay evening.
 +
 +Next day it really rained. The annual rainfall at Milford is 250" (i.e. about 21 feet! 7 yds.!!! Hell!!!) and we had it all. We sloshed the 13 miles of track through mud and watercourses called trails, with high mountains all around festooned with plunging waterfalls. At 4.30 we got into a launch which took us to Milford Hostel - the most magnificent White Elephant in the southern hemisphere they tell us. Here we lined up transport to take us 20 odd miles to Howden hut turn-off; then we had a hot bath on the house, and a meal for  5/- in the staff kitchen, then piled our gear into the taxi and so off into the deluge and the night.
 +
 +Going through the Homer tunnel was an experience. It is a huge unlined hole about three quarters of a mile long and the water just cascaded through the roof like a firehose. Pouring down over one of the surrounding iron grey mountains I counted over fifty waterfalls. The sky and the mountains and the river were all one pouring deluge. In the midst of all this the taxi man somewhat unhappily unloaded us at 7.30, and us not knowing where the hut was except that a signpost pointed 2 1/2 miles to Lake Howden up the mountain and down the other side and look for the hut on the northern end of the lake. It was going to be dark by the time we got there, and there was an atmosphere of haste and tension as we plugged up into the deluge. The track was eroded some three or four feet deep and roared with water as we squelched down it with increasing speed - and suddenly there was the hut right under our noses with smoke coming out of the chimney. We dripped inside. Everything we owned was wet; you could wring half the water supply of the South Island out of our boots and socks and parkas, and the other half was inside our packs. We learnt that the annual rainfall just hereabouts is 400" (i.e. 11 yards. Think of that!). In this hut we stayed all the next day while the rain darkened the universe, and we felt like fish at the bottom of deep pond. There were nine other bods in occupation who helped us pass the time away. We planned that next day, come what may, we would push off or our schedule would be upset. We voted against going over the high pass of the Routeburn track and instead went down the easier Greenstone valley. The weather was kind and we had a wonderful day. The track skirts Lakes Howden and MacKellar, then goes quietly through clean open beech forest past Rere Lake and so to Elfin Bay ferry wharf. A beaut big tin shed gave us shelter for the night and we didn't get up till the ferry was almost due at 11 a.m. There were crowds of holidaymakers and trampers on the boat. (This is from George, with his passion for detail: "The ferry s.s. "​Earnslaw",​ holds 1100 passengers. Its displacement is 300 tons - twin-screw - triple expansion steam engines - power steering. I got that from the Captain. I tried to get more from the engineer, but he only said Har Hum.") Most of the tramping types got off at Kinloch and caught tourist coaches up the valley. When we were unloaded at Glenorchy on the other side of the lake everyone piled into two buses, but as we had to buy stores we reluctantly watched them depart, with visions of ourselves having to walk 10 to 15 miles with a fortnight'​s provisions to the Rees Bridge, then 4 or 5 hours up the Rees Valley to our hut. We did a rapid bit of shopping at the store, with the result that over the next fortnight we found ourselves with far too much butter to put on far too few biscuits, then off we rushed and got a lorry which had offered to take us to the Rees Bridge. The tucker was just stuffed into our packs and we each carried our ex-Milford-Track-mosquito-nets filled with food too, and as we staggered off up the Valley, down came the rain. We walked in swimming trunks and bare feet to keep our long pants and socks dry, and in neck-to-knee parkas were a unique and intriguing sight for a party of 3 trampers who encountered us on the track. They told us 25-Mile hut was still several hours away - and us hoping we were almost there! - so when we came to a shepherd'​s hut within another mile we decided that was our destination for the night and settled ourselves in forthwith. It was a nice comfortable little hut with bunks and mattresses and a good fireplace. Before leaving we gave it the ultimate in spring cleaning to show our gratitude.
 +
 +Next day in fine weather we walked the couple of hours to 25-Mile hut set high up on a terrace with the Rees river winding below like scattered green ribbons and Paradise ducks flapping their way in pairs up and down the valley, and flocks of sea gulls (or lake gulls) soaring and drifting aimlessly in the clear air like bits of white paper dropped from an aeroplane. The hut water supply comes from 25-Mile creek which drops into the deepest, narrowest gorge you can possibly conceive. Arathusa Canyon is just catsmeat in comparison. It reminds me of Kubla Kahn...
 +
 +"... and here the sacred river ran\\
 +Through caverns measureless to man\\
 +Down to a sunless sea."
 +
 +A young married couple in occupation (N.Z.A.C. members) had seen us coming up the valley and had the kettle on for a "​cuppa"​ as soon as we got in. We spent the afternoon sunbaking and snoozing among the sunny tussocks. Beaut!!
 +
 +We'll continue our adventures in the South Island in the next issue.
 +
 +----
 +  ​
 +Naughty. Mr. Matthews. After all, the pains to which the comperes went to provide a "​clean"​ show, he skulks behind the curtain with the RampANT ANTS, and produces an awfully blue remark. The worst of it is - with Matthews you can't be quite sure just how innocent his intent.
 +
 +'Vonny Renwick was given the Hercularean task of seeing that the character to play the Black Duke in the opera arrived in sober condition. But the producer was worried. "I know Yvonne,"​ he said, "I said 'not more than half an hour', but after half an hour she'll start to say, 'I wonder if I ought to go in there after him?' " Just as the producer was getting all worked up about it, they arrived - before 3 p.m. - with the Black Duke in ridiculously teetotal state. Not as Black as he's painted.
 +
 +At one stage on Saturday, Ray Bean was lamenting encroaching senility and explaining he'd "​mislaid"​ his pack. Sympathy was strenuously resisted. "​No",​ he said regretfully,​ "It isn't my memory. I'm getting old if I can't take two schooners of Windsor beer without losing a pack".
 +
 +----
 +
 +Well, now that we've slaughtered the Re-Union, let's set our sights on the __Easter Parade__!
 +
 +Heather Joyce says her __Bendethra Caves__ has all the possibilities if half her probabilities come off. So to anyone with a problematical mind, this should be right down their alley. Come and join in the fun and games at Bendethra - it's sure to be different!!!
 +
 +----
 +
 +===== Paddy Made. =====
 +
 +__The Moon & You__
 +
 +There are some folks who know how the date of Easter is fixed, but for Paddy it is all wrapped up in mystery and magic. The fixing of the date certainly goes back to the pre-Christian Era and is connected with the magic rites associated with planting ceremonies of Spring in the northern hemisphere and timed by the lunar calendar.
 +
 +All of the above is merely a verbose preface to a thought that we usually have a moon with us at Easter, but this year most of us will be asleep before the moon comes up.
 +
 +A few last minute thoughts for Easter. Unexpected new shipment of "​Chuffer"​ Stoves in - price £2.13.6.
 +
 +Quart tins of Shellite... 3/9 tin
 +
 +Aluminium Screw Top Jars... 2/6 each
 +
 +Good supplies of dried vegetables ready.
 +
 +"​Proofall"​ proofing compound 4/11 -- and "​Drumstick"​ wax 2/-, for reproofing garments or tent.
 +
 +__Note to skiers__.
 +
 +Bookings of Skis, Stocks, & Boots for Queen'​s Birthday Weekend and rest of season open on 2nd April.
 +
 +New ski gear price list now ready.
 +
 +M.J Dunphy'​s map of Warrumbungles ready. Price 4/-.
 +
 +Paddy Pallin. Lightweight Camp Gear.
 +
 +201 Castlereagh St., Sydney.
 +
 +----
195704.txt · Last modified: 2018/11/08 02:21 by tyreless