Mountaineering courses in New Zealand are based out of great huts like the NZAC owned centenial hut – located at the head of the Franz Josef Glacier
At the head of the Franz Josef glacier is Centenial Hut. The recent NZ high alpine skills course run by Gary for the NZ Alpine Club, based themselves here for a few days of good weather covering crevasse rescue, pitching on snow and ice, navigation and weather forcasting.
Mic, Monty and Pat high up on the Fox Glacier, New Zealand
A few months ago, we heard from Mic who had climbed Mt Cook as well as Mt Tasman with Gaz some years ago. He was keen to introduce his son Pat to Alpinism adventures and last month, together with his longtime mountaineering buddy Monty, the threesome arrived for a seven day mountaineering instruction course. At the base, this was the opportunity to finalize the latest Adventure Tourism auditing request and then our team hit the road to Fox Glacier; photos on the last blog but here now the feedback:
from Monty, after his fourth trip:
” Thank you very much again for a wonderful and friendly experience. I always come away from climbing trips with ‘Gaz’ with more confidence and desire for more mountain excursions. I know Mick and I will be planning our next trip as soon as we get back home. Gaz, your patient tutorial towards Pat in getting him to understand the complexity of climbing and how he can still enjoy it was most beneficial & assuring. A great mentor.
Iris, your hospitality as always was warm and generous. Till next time, Monty”
Thanks Monty, we look forward to it!
Alpinism and sustainability go hand in hand – there is no other way as we all have to look after our splendid nature and wilderness areas. We have our own sustainability statement and improvements have been ongoing since our establishment during the Millennium year.
Mountain guide Gaz getting rid of surplus packaging before a trip
Climbing ropes too get recycled, here to fix a rubbish bin
there are 2-3 composts on the go at all times at the Alpinism and Ski base
Alpinism and Ski Wanaka is on every mountaineering, ski touring or trekking trip passing on the message as best as possible to visitors from all over the globe. We have also supported Wanaka Wastebusters since they opened their doors. Now there es another enterprise in Wanaka which I believe is in line with being sustainable and sharing resources, the Wanaka time bank. If everyone of us makes the best possible effort, there WILL be improvement. Education is part of it so please help to pass the message that breaking bottles all around beautiful places in Wanaka and leaving rubbish is not cool!
Help educate the masses: no rubbish left behind ever!
Wanaka LandSAR team in training
Here are the links (11.12.2012)
Episode one 26th Nov
Episode two 3.Dec
Episode three in Fiordland
If you are interested in what Gary and the Local Wanaka Land search and rescue people do, then tune into NZ TV channel One 8pm on a Monday night for eight episodes of reality TV of “high country rescue” ( the first episode was Monday 26th November and seems to have been well received by those we have talked to and those that have sent messages about it)
Spring in Wanaka and it is beautiful watching the various native flowers emerge, from Patotara to Kowhai, now the delicate looking New Zealand Iris and dark red delicious Pittostorum are appearing. Ski touring season has come and gone, guided trekking to Rob Roy glacier cirque started and our mountaineering season is shaping up.
For any interested mountaineers, we have a Technical Mountaineering Course from 6-12th Jan. 2013 with 3 spots left. An alpine climbing instruction course with top New Zealand instructor Gary Dickson in person.
Black Swan family, Matukituki valley Wanaka
This morning Iris headed off with one other friend to do some personal trekking in the Greenstone/Caples/Steeple creek area. The weather is perfect for 3 days, which is how long they expect to be out there.
Guided trekking , hiking or walks with Iris is the perfect way to enjoy time whilist staying in the Wanaka area. When Iris gets back from this personal trek, she’ll catch her breath as she has a person arriving for some guided trekking over a couple of days.
You can look forward to some photos of flora, fauna and classic Southern Alps landscapes in a few days.
Come and enjoy the wealth of local knowledge trekking guide Iris knows
Here some memorabilia of Alpinism during the last decade: youtube legendary Doug Ball who spent considerable time climbing with mountain guide Gary Dickson aka Gaz from January 2006 until August 2009.
Doug Ball, 79, on Mt Aspiring, New Zealand
Doug at 80, climbing a few peaks over 4000m in a week in Switzerland
Doug climbing high above the Dossenhütte, Kingspitze in the back ground
Doug had climbed Mt Cook Aoraki with his wife Peggy and many other peaks, but never Mt Aspiring. He got thwarted twice while climbing with Gaz because of conditions and weather but third time lucky and for a brief time he was considered the oldest climber to have sumited. He must have been an inspiration … more
Based at Centennial hut for some more alpine climbing
He sent us these lines just recently …”I use a slide show of my mountaineering photos as a screen saver so that my memories are not lost but are refreshed every day. Alpinism and Ski certainly made an enormous difference to my life. What would have become of me if I had just thrown in the sponge after Peggy died? I have so much to thank you both for and am not likely to ever forget it.”
keep going strong Doug
Cameron hut and Mount Cook lillies - giant buttercup
Magnificient views on the Rob Roy glacier track
Keas, welcoming you to Rob Roy glacier cirque
Beginning of January and the weather has been outstanding here for at least three weeks, fantastic for all sorts of walks and hiking adventures. Iris has been on her guided trekking excrusions to Rob Roy a couple of times and privately for personal recreation, hiking to Cameron hut and Breast Hill. For more recreation, the Alpinism & Ski team has climbed Sharks Tooth in the Matukituki valley with friends Gordy and Katrin. Also on the program a few sailing excursions on lake Wanaka, perfect alternative to the mountains. Want to join us for some fun? just ask!
Climbing up and up towards Shark's Tooth with brilliant views of Mt Rob Roy
Be it an ascent of one of the beautiful peaks in the Southern Alps or a mountaineering instruction course to learn/refresh alpine climbing skills, Alpinism and Ski offers you our diverse range of mountain guiding services. From short and easy rock climbing on the local Wanaka crags, trekking, hiking and walking around the local hills or to more full on and week long missions on the glaciated terrain, just get in touch to help you organize your next trip.
The youngest and smallest having fun on the rock
A future rock climbing star in the making?
Yesterday, Riverside next to the Motatapu river near Wanaka provided a fantastic venue for an introduction to the sport of rock climbing for long time client and friend Phil melchiors Grand sons. It was also a lovely spot for a family picnic and ‘refreshing’ plunge in the water.
Snow and ice techniques on a mountaineering course
crevasse rescue on an instruction course
pitching up a ridge on an alpine instruction course
The New Year is approaching fast and the last few weeks have brought us excellent weather for adventures in the Southern Alps.
We have two mountaineering courses on the program, one for beginners and the other for intermediate to advanced mountaineers keen to brush up, renew and confirm their alpine climbing skills to stay safe in the mountains while having fun, here the details:
- Intro to Alpinism, 6 days from 20 – 25th February 2012, $ 2426 pp
- Total Alpinism, 7 days from 4 – 10th March 2012, $ 2830 pp
One of those mountaineering instruction courses could be just right for you, so don’t hesitate and get in touch for more details.
HAPPY NEW YEAR