Off Track Exploration of Mick Stream
Saturday March 24 2007
Mick Stream drains northeast from Mick 877, joining the West Waitewaewae River about one km upstream from Island Forks. The 1981 Forest Service Route Guide (p. 31), refers to a route out of the Waitewaewae basin as being ‘up Mick Stream’. Merv Rogers, in Tararua Footprints (p. 131), refers to a blazed route onto Mick ‘from the headwater forks of Mick Stream’. Exploration of Mick Stream seemed almost a necessity!
We went in past the Ventura Bomber crash site, dropping east from Bump 860 into the stream headwaters. Travel became slow and rough as the valley sides grew more precipitous. The first headwater forks appeared at about 680 m where a majority opinion denied blaze status to a crude scratch found on a slender tree trunk. The descent continued; tiny glades drenched in sunshine followed again by steeper sidewalls, wrecked trees dotting the waterway. We commenced a somewhat precarious sidle above the stream on the true right to avoid the bigger boulders beginning to clutter the stream bed. After two hours and having descended only 300 m, we gave up and lunched in dappled sunlight near a small forks that failed to convince as being those mentioned by Merv. Then a steep climb out north reaching the crest of the side spur at about 710 m, westish to the main ridge just north of Bump 860, and a long trudge back to Waitohu Quarry via Bumps 828 and 730.
- Party members
- Colin Cook (leader/scribe), Ken Fraser, Bernard Molloy, Sieny Pollard.