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Heels 1970

Douglas Landsborough

Douglas Landsborough

I remember the rushing streams in the evening sun in the Hooker, the icy gully leading into Westland. Exhaustion in the scrub of Bluewater Creek. The soaring west ridge of Sefton leading easily to the magnificent summit, the views from Tutoko to Whitcombe, and the yawning gap down into the Copland. Our dark snow cave on Welcome Pass, a rosey evening with friends and spirits. The Horace Walker Neve, bluffs leading down to the Douglas. The Douglas morraine which we called The Oven, hot and dry. Harper's Rock,with its excessive airdropped food and forbidden cans of beer. The solitude and magnificence of the Douglas Basin. Easy travel to Spence Bivvy, bathing in the warm tarns and gentle young nor'wester. A tense day re-crossing the divide, this time from Spence to the Mueller in a gathering wind. An old man nor'wester for two days at 3 Johns. A cold southerly as we walk down the Mueller. Dinner at the Herm - pork, venison, wine.

Impressions roll by of a Xmas trip, so difficult to convey to anyone else - the knowledge of the country that you gain, the feelings that you had, so important to the trip. Each day is ten days crammed into one.

We spent 2 weeks in Westland, the weather was good enough for us to complete our trip. Over the Copland Pass, up the Bluewater Creek to Scott Basin and Welcome Pass, Sefton, then down to the Fitzgerald Flats via the Wicks Glacier, over Douglas Pass to Spence Bivvy, and back to the Hermitage by the Spence and Mueller glaciers. What more is there to say, you would have to have been there to know.