Christchurch, New Zealand

Overnight Tramp to Cameron Hut – Cameron Valley, Canterbury.

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We wanted to do an overnight tramp as we had clocked up a lot of experience over the past 6 months on long day hikes. I did stress to J that our first overnighter had to be an easy tramp and no more than 5 hours each way. After a medium amount of research we seemed to find a good one tramping down the valley to a Mountaineers Club Hut in the Cameron valley. Billed as a 5 hour walk by the DOC. The hut itself looked good in pics and a lot nicer than some of the more dilapidated huts. What it was like in person I couldn’t tell you as we never made it there….

Starting off...

Starting off…

Day 1 - few hours in

A few hours into the walk

Day 1 - a 'less'scary crossing

This was one of the less scary crossings!

Day 1 Starting off

Got my trusty stick!

Day 1 - just the sheep for company

Just the sheep for company

Crystal clear water!

Crystal clear water!

Coffee break after spotting a huge red back spider!

Coffee break after spotting a huge red back spider!

Coffee break on a very comfy rock.

Coffee break on a very comfy rock.

Day 1 - climb up onto the ridge

After the climb up onto the ridge

Day 1 - the top looking down

At the top looking down

We have to get to the end of the valley.

5.5 Hours in and we have to get to the end of the valley with only a few more daylight hours left.

At about 8pm we starred to get a little worried as the hut was nowhere in sight and we had been walking for over 8 hours. Quite exhausted and with only 20 mins left before darkness we decided to keep going in the hope it was just over the next ridge, but half way up a very steep section of the mountain it was clear it was going to get pitch back at any moment. We had no choice but to climb down about 20 meters to a flat-ish section near the ledge and sleep in the bush. Thankfully it was a beautiful clear night and not too cold, just a bit damp.

Fiery Sunrise

Fiery Sunrise

Sunrise over the mountains.

Sunrise over the mountains having woken up a bit.

The jagged mountains behind us.

The jagged mountains behind us.

Snug as a bug outside on a mountain.

Snug as a bug outside on a mountain.

Just woken up to the sunrise.

Just woken up to the sunrise.

After a bit of cold coffee

After a bit of cold coffee

We had to climb back to the track in the morning once we had packed up our things and saw in the daylight just how close to the edge we had slept. On the way back it was much easier to find the path but it was still challenging to do the climbs and pass the high areas of very loose scree. We shaved two hours off our times on the way back and I spent the last 4 hours dreaming of a can of coke and and ice cream. When we finally returned to the car we headed straight for the closest shop, which was an hour away in Mt Sumers, for some very welcome ice creams!

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