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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington N.Z. Vol. 1, No. 11 June 15, 1938

Tramping — Thirteen Men and a Girl


Thirteen Men and a Girl

Mr. Butchers, emerging from a wet tent, surveyed the weather, the assembled trampers, and the river, and said, in a miserable tone: "I came over bare for a pleasure trip. I'm going back to Wairenga." One other tramper was of the name opinion, so the two disappeared down the river, thus missing a really splendid trip.

The previous evening had seen the party—thirteen men and one girl—[unclear: boundering] through the Five Mile, gorging at Tawhai Hut, stumbling up the Orongorengo River to Boulder Creek, and there camping in the rain.

Certainly Sunday morning justified Mr. Butchers' attitude. Heavy rain and severe cold are unpleasant, even after a breakfast of beans, on toast and stewed fruit. But, comparatively undismayed, the party clambered up to Boulder Saddle, losing one member, whose avoirdupois and inexperience made him unable to "take it." The residue descended, encountering nettles and circumnavigating waterfalls, to the Wharepapa River and Eglington's sheep station at Palliser Bay. Here same fine views of the Wairarapa were obtained, the weather being perfect. An easy walk round the coast brought the party to the Mukumuku Stream, and a halt was made at Black Hut.

Most of the roof and sides of Black Hut was missing, but the problem was solved by pitching a tent inside the but. Two large billies of luscious stew were soon prepared and devoured, and a camp fire and sing-song put new life into the party. The leader then commenced to sing Gilbert and Sullivan, so everybody went to bed.

Sausages and bacon for breakfast, and the patty was off again, dawdling up to South Matthews Saddle and down again into the Orongorongo River in the sunshine. After eating the residue of the food, a fast party hissed through the Five Mile to catch the five boat for Wellington, and the leader carefully and slowly escorted three slower trampers back to their respective habitations.

Special mention must be made of Jean McKenale, who, with no previous tramping experience, did the whole trip Cheerfully and well.