People often ask trampers and climbers; the sometime inhabitants of the rocks and snow, bush and rivers, peaks and valleys; "why do you do it; what do you get out of it?" And usually we find ourselves hard pressed to supply an adequate answer. But this is exactly how it should be. One simply cannot put into a few words the breathless gulp of triumph standing on top of a peak, the silent gaze down a beautiful river valley, the wonderful feeling of isolation, sitting around a camp-fire at night talking quietly and staring into the flickering embers.
Yet here is "Heels" once more trying to provide some tangible answer to that "why?"
Before you dive into the contents of this edition however, just think for a few minutes how lucky we are to be asked this question. When the motorist/tourist can drive across Totara Flats or up the West Matukituki, or dine and dance at "Lake Constance Lodge" we will no longer be asked why we do it. And when that time comes it will be too late to turn nature's ecological clock backwards.
"New Zealand possesses some National Parks and back-country of unique beauty." Good. Let's keep it that way and prepare ourselves to meet each cut of the bulldozer with a corresponding blow for conservation.
Lesley Sissons: for assistance in typing and editing.