Canyoning Robinson Creek Jan 2022

After our French Ridge tramp we drove to the Haast Pass on a very sunny day and went canyoning. Craig had picked Robinson Creek, which he’d done before. We had a bit of a gear faff in the sun at the side of the road and then set off walking up into the forest ascending for 15-20 minutes to the top of the canyon. I had my new 5 mm wetsuit which I was hoping would keep me warmer than I usually am in a canyon. Rachel squeezed into her, somewhat too small, Trademe wetsuit. This involved Craig and I lifting her up by the waist of the wetsuit and trying to shake her down into the suit.

We started with a few small abseils. It’s a very pretty river and the features weren’t too difficult. We descended and the sides became steeper until it was no longer possible to escape. We came to a section where the guide had warned us about an unprotected traverse out to the anchor bolts. Craig went first and I watched as he abseiled, then walked down a narrow slot and climbed over to the bolts. He set up the anchor there and Rachel headed down the rope next. Craig belayed Rachel across to the anchor using my climbing rope that we’d brought with us to use as a puller. I abseiled, pulled down the static rope and then headed over. Craig belayed me across to the anchor and started setting up the next abseil. Everything going to plan.

I went first and abseiled into a huge cavern. The water tumbled past me on my right and I got a little caught in the flow for a while. It hit my helmet with some weight but I slid down the rope into the water without a problem. Rachel and Craig did a better job, more or less keeping out of the flow. It was amazing looking back up to the top of the abseil and to the light coming in from the river above. It really was a huge cavern. Once the others were down we took happy snaps and then walked out to the next feature.

We had a few more small abseils and we were at the bottom of the canyon and out into the sunshine. We emerged by the road and dumped our wet gear at the layby. It was a definite high-summer feeling and I was keen to camp somewhere and relax. We drove down the road to Pleasant Flat and set up our tents in the sun dumping our gear on the grass to dry.

Glentui Canyoning

I finished work early and drove Craig, Ivan, Pip, and Julia out to Glentui where we did the canyon there.

Ivan abseils (Canyoning Glentui)Craig descending (Canyoning Glentui)Craig in the water (Canyoning Glentui)Julia and Craig above a waterfall (Canyoning Glentui)Walking down the river (Canyoning Glentui)Finished (Canyoning Glentui)

1) Ivan went first and checked out the flow.

2) Craig came down last with the rope bag.

3) We pulled the rope through and fed it back into the bag.

4) Craig set up the abseils for us.

5) The canyon is quite short with just a few features and then a walk down the river.

6) We were finished with plenty of daylight left.

Woolshed Creek Canyon

I drove to Mt Somers in the morning and met Craig and his Bulgarian friend Yanna. We walked up to Woolshed Creek Hut and went down the canyon below the hut.

The canyon was nice and easy and the flow was reasonably low but it was still interesting. There were a bunch of small abseils and a jump later on. In places the canyon was very narrow. Craig managed to touch both sides simultaneously with his hands at one point.

The descent was fairly short and this was followed by a long walk out the river. We found a track back up to avoid the complete walk down the river and were surprised how far we ascended. We ended up on the highest point on the track not so far from the hut despite having been in the canyon for quite some time.

We walked out the track and cooked dinner in the grassy car park at the road end.

Woolshed Creek Canyon

Above: The canyon was very narrow in parts.