Nadine's top three tips for the Routeburn Track Great Walk

Nadine's top three tips for the Routeburn Track Great Walk

February 16, 2018 1 Comment

What was the journey?

We have just completed the Routeburn Track, from the Divide to the Routeburn Shelter. We did this as a group of four, my husband Sam and myself, along with two friends Neil and David. Sam and I have completed a number of overnight tramping trips now and we really wanted to experience a Great Walk. We wanted to see just what made it so 'great' compared to other tracks we've done, and to finally say we've done a great walk. We have a group of family and friends that often come along on tramping trips with us, so when we asked them about doing the Routeburn with us, we weren't surprised that others wanted to come along. With being a great walk we had to get the huts booked months in advance to secure our spot, and that doesn't always work for everyone's work schedules unfortunately. We were really lucky that Neil and Dave were able to join us.

 

Early morning over Lake MacKenzie

 

Sam and I on top of Conical Hill. Which is a side track you can take from the Harris Saddle on the Routeburn Track. You can see all the way to the sea behind us.

Sam & Nadine on Conical Hill

Tell us about the most handy 3 hardware items you had on your journey and why they were so good

This question was a good one to discuss with the group. We all had at least one handy item each. Our top three for our Routeburn Tramp were Neil's JetBoil cooker. Despite this being a Great Walk and therefore the huts provided cookers and gas, we did find having the JetBoil rather handy. We were able to quickly get hot water for the mornings essential coffee while using the hut cookers to cook our breakfast. It's surprising how often you need just a bit more hot water and the JetBoil provided that. Our next handy item was the Octopus style tripod for the Smartphone. This made taking our group photos really easy, and it was so light and functional. Our last handy item for this trip would have to be Neil's 'Pass the Pigs' game. Great way to pass the time in the hut before bed.
Neil's Kea
Earland Falls, between the Divide and the MacKenzie Hut

What are your 3 top tips for multi-day expeditions

Our top tip would have to be pack light! If you don't need it, don't take it. Repackaging items can be a great idea to reduce weight, waste and space. Don't neglect the precautionary items though like a survival blanket and first aid kit. Another tip would be to make a pillow each night using an inflatable neck pillow put into a pillowcase. I'll usally wrap my jersey around the neck pillow before putting it into the pillowcase, it make a great pillow that packs down really small for your pack. The last tip would be to include a set of ear plugs, in most of these huts there are strangers sleeping in the same room as you and often there is snoring to be heard, if not a chorus of it in some cases. Ear plugs can make a huge difference to your experience.
Neil, Dave, Nadine and Sam on Day 2 of the Routeburn Track, between the MacKenzie Hut and the Harris Saddle. 

Our shamless plug ...what is your favourite Go Native snack or meal or flavour

We just loved the hot meals at the end of the day. I don't usually like mashed potato, but the Go Native potato is delicious. We all loved the Beef Casserole and made sure to save that for the last night as we knew it would be a great feed to fill our hungry tums. We also had the Chicken Italiano this trip, and again all really enjoyed it. The boys are still set on the Beef, they just loved having real chunks of steak to eat. I think I'm swaying towards the Chicken now after this trip. The tomato pieces really made it for me.

Where is your next journey?

We always end each tramp talking about what the next one will be. We usually each have a list of new tracks we'd like to try, and this time was no different. Sam and I usually look for tracks that are overnight walks that we can do over a weekend. Sam prefers loop tracks, and I prefer newer huts, we also try to find tracks within a few hours drive from home. Sam and I like to take our two boys out for overnight tramps when we can. The boys love staying in the huts. The next tramp Sam and I would like to do together is the Cameron Hut in the Cameron Valley, or Welcome Flat on the West Coast. We would also love to do the Croesus Track with the kids, staying in the Ces Clark Hut.
- Nadine


1 Response

Rod
Rod

May 01, 2018

I thoroughly recommend Welcome Flat Hut, remember to book online, and take 3 days. This way, you can have a rest day, soaking in the hot pools. Take sandfly repellent and a pack towel. Ces Clark is a shorter walk, with interesting history and mining relics too. Enjoy!

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