Sunday, July 1, 2007

Basic Snowcraft Course

We have just arrived back from Temple Basin and Broken River (Arthur's Pass area for those who are not familiar). Firstly I would like to say a massive thank you to Richard and Adrian for their guidance and amazing knowledge on the course, it was really well done!! We set out from Shell service station on Friday and arrived at the Christchurch tramping club hut around the 9:30-10pm mark. It was on with the heaters and extra layers, find a bed and get some crampons sorted out for the next day. It was just after midnight before we finally snuggled into our sleeping bags, and then an early 7am awakening. Saturday began with a big breakfast, then in the car to head to Temple Basin ski field where we would learn self arrest (the technique of stopping yourself from sliding down a hill using an ice axe). It was very cold and pretty miserable weather but it managed to hold out until the walk back down to the cars when it absolutely hosed down and blew a gale (man those hot showers at the hut were nice) and so was a nice hot meal at the Wobbly Kea in Arthur's Pass village. Sunday was much the same, awake just after 7am...however no one really wanted to leave the comforts of the hut and we sat chatting until 9:30ish (well mainly Adrian telling stories about Pubs in Britain which were a great laugh (probably one of the most interesting people I have met, always something funny to talk about!) anyway we finally made out way out and headed for Broken River ski field to do some crampon training, however after a 1hr+ hard slog up the ski field road we found sweet FA snow and ice so ended up doing the training on a shingle screed and a bit of ice laying on the road (however it gave a good chance of getting the feel of them). And other than a walk back down and a drive home that was pretty much it.

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