Don’t know if a 36 hour turnaround was sufficient to rest my limbs after my last day in the Abel Tasman.

It was a familiar scene climbing up the steep track alongside the predator fence around the Waimarama Sanctuary. I’d been up or down along there a few times in recent years, and plenty more when I was at school.

At least the weather was cool.

Once up on the Dun Mountain Trail I was passed by a group of guys out on mountain bikes, off on the 40 km or so circuit. Then someone coming the opposite direction with a small pack, looked like he had spend the night somewhere.

Windy Point was calm with only a few clouds in an otherwise blue sky. I was contemplating which route to take. There was the sensible continuation on to Coppermine Saddle and looping back on the ridge track to Rocks Hut, or, the direct route.

Hmmm. That would bring back a few memories. Follow a ridge 400 m down to the Duckponds, as we used to call it back when it was often used, then climbing back up to The Rocks, and the lookout, then dropping down to the hut not far away.

I might as well relive my youth, I thought.

Fortunately someone had marked the track with orange plastic ribbon about five years before, most were faded but still discernible, wrapped on the trees. The path on the ground was fairly obvious. Once this way was more used than the current marked trail.

Up at The Rocks, the lookout, the view of Mt Richmond, and the long ridge up was obscured by cloud along the tops.

I had Rocks Hut to myself, despite the long weekend. I’ve stayed here on many occasions, both in this hut, built in 1983, and the previous Nelson Tramping Club hut that was located on the other edge of the clearing.

Almost like coming home.

Day 2 | Down the hill to Roebuck Hut →