Woo hoo, first snow! We had heard grave reports of ‘treacherous snow conditions, must have ice axe and crampons..’ from the DOC people at the visitors centre. Quite good snow for walking on actually, nice and sticky, didn’t get soft and post holey in the afternoon either. Going to enjoying coming back down this way in a few hours time :D
Fresh Dusting of Snow on the Tops
We woke up to a chilly hut this morning and when Nico said there was snow outside I thought he was joking! This put a different spin on the idea of climbing up the pass today. We squinted up at the mountain and tried to figure out how many metres up the snow started. Were we going to be crunching on snow up the mountain?
I felt like a kid at Christmas waking up to see the tops had a fresh dusting of snow last night, as soon as the sun hit them the camera shutters started flippin’. There was to be no crunchy snow underfoot though, it had mostly melted by the time we got up there.
Sun 6th Mar
Heading Toward the Snowy Young Basin
The rocky basin at the top of the valley was reminiscent of Waiau Pass, only with a dusting of sinister snow. It had quite an evil vibe about it! Saw-toothed ridge lines beginning to encircle us…
The ridge we’re about to climb is on the lefthand side, the long since melted glacier that gauged out this valley hasn’t left us with any gentle lower slopes to warm up on, it’s literally straight up as soon as we leave the flat of the basin.