Showing posts with label Walkers Pass. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Walkers Pass. Show all posts

Tuesday, 1 October 2019

Hawdon Hut, 20-21 September 2019

A bitter sweet jaunt into the Hawdon Valley....

My Dad passed away last week..he was 75 years old. He had been sick for a while but his sudden passing was a bit of a shock to all of us who knew him and loved him. He was a quiet, gentle sort of man (for the most part...he could also be a grumpy bugger...but then everyone is like that on occasion...life can be irritating!!!) genuine, warm and loving with a great set of American manners.

Mum and Dad in happier times...how I like to remember them...


Dad (Larry) was originally from Illinois in the United States but has been living here for more than 50 years. He met my mother when he was stationed at Operation Deep Freeze as a radio operator with the US Navy back in the 1960's. He served 12 years in the Navy and left as a Petty Officer...he was proud of his service as he should have been.


My Dad and Georgia round at the old family home, 2006????

My Dad liked the outdoors and was once training to be a US Forest Ranger before his college finances ran out. He loved hiking, fishing, hunting and camping when younger but I think he felt out of place in the New Zealand bush as he was used to American conditions. He had a store of good stories about the outdoors and liked to talk about it. He was a lifelong member of the NRA from back when it was actually a decent organisation.

He really felt the loss of my mother in 2017 deeply....they were married for 52 years after all. Not an inconsequential feat in today's world...


My Dad at our 2014 family Christmas do..

I felt like going tramping as a homage to Dad so last Friday I gathered my gear and headed for the Hawdon Valley and Hawdon Hut in Arthur's Pass National Park. 


Pt 1742 from near Discovery Stream, Upper Hawdon River Valley, Arthur's Pass

Karen was working so she was not able to come with me so I undertook the trip on my own. 

I drove up to Hawdon Valley on the Friday morning and parked my car at the car park adjacent to the Hawdon Shelter around 10.30. There was one other car there so I thought I would have company in the hut but I never saw the occupants so I think they must have been going for a day walk in the area. 



Car park at Hawdon Shelter, Hawdon River Valley

Hawdon Shelter, Hawdon camp site, Hawdon River Valley

The track to the Hawdon River crossing starts right next to the shelter...travel in the valley is a mixture of marked track, an old 4 W/D track, gravel bashing and lots of river crossings. That is one of the problems with this track...you must cross rivers or streams many times so if there is any rain this is not the place to try to visit. 



Hawdon River Valley: start of the Hawdon Valley Track

Hawdon Valley Track near the campsite, Hawdon River Valley


The track will lead you down to the main part of the Hawdon River where your first wet boot crossing awaits only 500 meters from the car. You will be doing many more so don't worry about taking your boots off....

Hawdon Valley: Hawdon River to East Hawdon Valley

When you get to the Hawdon River it is a case of make your best crossing...you will need to use those river crossing skills to assess the best spots for getting to the other side.


Crossing the main Hawdon River, Hawdon Valley Track

 Luckily the Hawdon is a broad braided river so there are several smaller streams to cross rather than one deep one. Regardless take care as crossing here can often be knee deep and swift...remember every river crossing requires thought!!!



Hawdon River crossing point near the shelter

Over the first braid of the Hawdon River, Hawdon Valley Track

Crossing the main braid of the Hawdon River


Once over the Hawdon you should look for the 4 W/D track that heads up to the East Hawdon confluence..walking on the track will easily save you 30 minutes walking time. There is a predator and stock proof fence over the end of the Hawdon Valley..it must be helping because
I have never seen or heard so many birds up the valley.


Hawdon Valley Track: o the 4 W/D track to the upper Hawdon Valley

The second major river crossing is across Sudden Valley Stream...this is always a moderately difficult crossing as the river is a bit deeper. Make sure you look for the best crossing point...


Approaching Sudden Valley Stream, Hawdon Valley Track

I often find the best place to cross Sudden Valley Stream is just up from the confluence with the Hawdon River. Watch out for the run out as it is into the main Hawdon River in one of its deeper spots. I crossed about 100 meters from the confluence just above the rapids in the area of calmer water you can see in the photo...


Sudden Valley Stream, Hawdon Valley Track


Walking along the side of the Hawdon Valley, Hawdon Valley Track


The 4 W/D track heading up valley....Hawdon Valley Track


I like this dead tree next to the Hawdon Valley 4 W/D track, it gets more moss on it every time I visit the area.


Interesting moss covered tree, Hawdon Valley

It was a nice day for tramping overcast but dry and about 15 degrees....good weather for a trip up the Hawdon Valley. I really should have worn my hat as I had a glow to my face from the UV rays burning me even through the clouds...



Jon Moake in the mid Hawdon Valley


There was a big storm up here in April which damaged a lot of the tracks and changed the course of the Hawdon River. It used to run solidly down the true left of the valley but now runs down the centre. This is slightly problematic as the crossing points are now much deeper...luckily it had been dry for the previous week so the channels were not that hard to cross.



Crossing the Hawdon River mid valley...Hawdon Valley Track

The Hawdon Valley, mid valley, Hawdon Valley Track

Hawdon Valley Track: crossing the main river mid valley

On the 4 W/D track to the East Hawdon Confluence

Once over the river the 4 W/D track is much clearer...it makes for quick and easy travel for the rest of the way to the East Hawdon River. I had one problem on the day...DOC were seeding the valley with feed pellets as they are doing a possum poisoning program. The possums get used to the non lethal feed and then when they lay 1080 laced feed in a month the greedy possums will devour it all.

Then the possums will die...brutal but effective!!!


Walker Pass becomes visible in the Upper Hawdon Valley

I had to put my hat on as I had feed pellets bouncing of me from the helicopter which was dropping it right across the valley. At one stage I hid under some trees for 10 minutes as bits of feed were flying in all directions....

BTW... a feed pellet hitting you from 500 feet in the air stings a bit...just so you know!


DOC pest pre-feed on the Hawdon Valley Track


The 4 W/D track near East Hawdon, Hawdon Valley Arthur's Pass

There are some OK camping sites in the small copses of trees scattered over this part of the Hawdon Valley...I would be inclined to camp closer to the river though as that would be your water source. there are some nice stands of trees just back from the main course of the river.


Decent forest campsites mid valley...Hawdon Valley Track

The views up the valley to Walkers Pass and the area around Hawdon Hut improve the further you go. There was a lot of snow on the mountains at the head of the Hawdon Valley...we have had a bit of late snow this year so it might stay until November or even early December.


Follow the 4 W/D track right up to the East Hawdon Confluence

End of the 4 W/D track in the Hawdon Valley

The valley closes in as you approach the East Hawdon Stream, the end of the 4 W/D track is about 400 meters from the East Hawdon confluence. Crossing the East Hawdon is usually easy and so it proved to be on the day...the river is multi-braided now so each of the individual streams are shallow.


Hawdon Valley Track....bush margin just before the East Hawdon River


First braid of the East Hawdon River...Hawdon Valley Track

View up the East Hawdon Valley from my crossing point

Crossing the East Hawdon River....Hawdon Valley Track

You have crossed the half way point once you cross the East Hawdon, it is about another 1-1.5 hours to the hut. The track (such as it is...) closely follows the river so you have the sound of water with you for the rest of the trip.


Over the East Hawdon and heading for the hut...Hawdon Valley Track

The East Hawdon marks the halfway point in your journey, although more than half way to Hawdon Hut travel from this point is a little slower. There are multiple river crossings from here and the sometimes rocky nature of the track (such that it is...) makes for more difficult walking.

Hawdon Valley: East Hawdon to Hawdon Hut

I stopped for a break just past the East Hawdon confluence...I had been walking for about an hour and a half and had broken the back of the trip. I sat on a handy log and had a drink of water and a tasty Le Snak....

In the upper reaches of the Hawdon Valley, Hawdon Valley Track


Rest stop two hours up the Hawdon Valley....

For those of you who don't know a Le Snak is a prepackaged cracker and cheese spread snack..three crackers and about 50gms of the spread. They are a tasty addition to the trampers pantry and super convenient though I hate all the packaging....


Le Snak are excellent tramping snacks...


After 10 minutes I got too and continued on my along the faint ground trail heading up valley. Once over the East Hawdon River Pt. 1742 and Walkers Pass draw you ever onward towards your goal.


Following the faint ground track up the Hawdon Valley 


Pt 1742 at the head of the Hawdon Valley

Twenty minutes after the East Hawdon you find yourself at a mandatory crossing of the Hawdon River...this is where I was foiled back in March. This time the river was running low and clear so it was an easy crossing...I still followed my river crossing protocols of course.



Crossing the Hawdon River in the upper valley

Moderately easy crossing point on this day...Hawdon Valley Track

My target is the obvious triangle on the true right...Hawdon River

Safely over the mid reaches of the Hawdon River

From this point to the hut you follow a series of nice forest trails with an occasional drop down into the river to avoid bluffs etc. It is fairly easy walking...always with a slight upward slope as you are climbing into the head of a valley.


Into the forest on the true right of the Hawdo River

There are some very nice campsites in the mid region of the Hawdon Valley, they are all rough forest sites but have trees for shade and wind cover and easy access to the nearby river. 

I must come up here for a camp some time....


Nice campsites in the Upper Hawdon Valley, Hawdon Valley Track

Hawdon Valley Track: great views of the river as you move up valley

Track erosion along the Hawdon Valley Track

As I said before every so often you need to drop down into the river to get around bluffs and ridges..they are all easy to navigate in fine weather but can become extremely problematic in rain as the river can flood and cover your access points.

So, once again...don't come up here when it is raining...


Rock bashin' in the Upper Hawdon River, Hawdon Valley Track

Pt. 1742 leading the way to Hawdon Hut

The photo below is a good example of the river bed track...clearly you are not getting past this point if it is raining as the river bed would be full of water....



Possible river hazard point on the Hawdon Valley Track

...the side streams coming in from the Polar Range can also be a problem...they are easy to cross in good weather but quickly become swirling vortex's of death if it is raining....they are steep, swift and narrow streams...


Crossing a side stream 40 minutes from Hawdon Hut, Hawdon Valley Track

Hawdon Valley Track: view towards end of Hawdon Valley, Blackball Range

The Hawdon River has been invaded by rock snot which is a type of introduced algae clogging many watersheds in New Zealand. It is usually introduced on boots, gaiters and water craft and spreads rapidly up stream.

 It is truly awful stuff and seriously degrades water quality so it is really sad to see it has taken hold in Arthur's Pass National Park.


Rock snot algae in the Hawdon River, Hawdon Valley Track


The site of the old Hawdon Hut lies about 30 minutes down river from the new hut. All that is left of it is the clearing the hut once sat in and the remains of its burnt piles. Back in 2010 some idiot burnt the old Lockwood hut to the ground by chucking hot embers under the floor.

Stupid bastid!!!

Luckily DOC had recently received a funding boost so there was money for a replacement...DOC decided to place it in a nicer spot further up the valley..a good choice in my opinion. The old hut site is now a back country camp site...it has a toilet but that is it.

Nice place to camp though....


Approaching the old Hawdon Hut site, Hawdon Valley Track

Burnt pilings the only remainder of old Hawdon Hut, Hawdon Valley Track

It is about one kilometre from the old hut site to Hawdon Hut...this is made up of a short forest sidle track, and some short river and bush tracks. Watch your step on the bush sidle..it is rocky, has lots of roots and was a bit muddy when I went through.


Start of the forest sidle, Hawdon Valley Track


Hawdon Valley Track: sidle track 20 minutes from Hawdon Hut


Discovery Stream is the last river crossing on the Hawdon Valley Track...it has two wide braids which are usually easy to cross...take care in rain as they can and do become raging beasts. You are so close to the hut you can just about taste its presence...



Climbing back down to the river, Hawdon Valley Track


The first braid of Discovery Stream, Hawdon Valley Track


Bush track between braids on Discovery Stream, Hawdon Valley Track

Crossing second braid of Discovery Stream on the way to Hawdon Hut

Bush track on the far side of Discovery Stream, Hawdon Valley Track

One last stroll along a short bush track and you are deposited at Hawdon Hut...

Chilling at Hawdon Hut....

Hawdon Hut is a real gem..it is a modern 20 bunk design with lots of internal space and a separate hut wardens quarters. The site was a really good selection as it is sunnier than the last site and not as buggy. 

There is a resident hut warden over the summer as it becomes very busy in this easy to access valley.


Hawdon Hut, Upper Hawdon Valley, Hawdon Valley Track

The view from the veranda is awesome...of the col at the head of the Hawdon Valley, Pt. 1742, the Blackball Range and Walkers Pass. There are some excellent looking camp sites on the far side of the Hawdon along the bush margin, I have only seen people camping one time there but they look primo.


View from the Hawdon Hut veranda

The hut was built in 2010 as a replacement for the burnt down hut 30 minutes down valley...it has all the modern hut conweniences (hargh, hargh)....good insulation, water tanks, big cooking benches, indoor and outdoor sinks. There is sometimes firewood in the wood shed and there is a little space around the hut for pitching tents if required.


Water tank at the rear of Hawdon Hut, outdoor cleaning sink


Cooking bench, interior of Hawdon Hut

The sleeping arrangement is two 10 bunk rooms which can be blocked off from the other spaces by closing the doors.


Hawdon Hut: living space, wood burner and bunk rooms

Hawdon Hut: Interior space, dining tables and front door

Hawdon Hut: the other dining table in the hut

I took my customary spot up against the wall in bunk-room number one, there was only myself and a nice English couple staying in the hut anyway so we had a bunk room each. I was trialing my new Macpac NZAT down quilt and it worked like a bomb. It only has 350gms of fill but it is 900 loft water repealing fill so I was warm even with the cold temperature overnight.

It is going to be awesome for summer use...


My Osprey Atmos 55+ hanging in Hawdon Hut

The new Macpac NZAT down quilt gets its first outing...


There is a DOC mountain radio here for those parties heading up Walkers Pass to the Edwards or Otehake Valleys...the schedule is a radio watch at 8 am and 4 pm but DOC Arthur's Pass listen out from 7-5 pm everyday.



Hawdon Hut: mountain radio in the hut


There are Whio or blue ducks in the Upper Hawdon Valley now as well as in the Otehake and Edwards Rivers. I never saw any but I clearly heard that plaintive wheezing sound they make when I was siting outside in the late afternoon.



Hawdon Hut: information board about Whio or Blue Ducks


I managed with great difficulty to get the fire going but it was a real chore as all the wood was wet. I found a mostly dry log right at the back of the woodshed and once I chopped it up into small splits I managed to build a bed of embers. It slightly warmed the hut but I never managed to get it boiling red hot like I usually do.

I chopped up a big load of wood and put it in the wood box so it had a chance to dry out a bit before the weekend crowds arrived.



Hawdon Hut: Jon works hard to get the damn fire going...

I sat outside the hut on one of the benches in the late afternoon, it was starting to cool but still warm enough...also no sand flies at this time of the year.

Later in the evening I had a chat to the English couple they were very interesting and we talked about life, tramping trips, Old Blighty and the such....you do met some interesting types in back country huts that's for sure.

I had forgotten to pack my warm top so I had to huddle in my thermal shirt and jacket for most of the night. I was OK but I would not say I felt comfortable so at least that is a good lesson about not packing your stuff in haste the night before you head out....


On the veranda of Hawdon Hut, boots and gaiters drying

Hawdon Hut: the hut wardens quarters on the side of Hawdon Hut

Hawdon Hut: wood shed and toilets to the rear of the hut

I headed off to bed around 9.30 pm to read wrapped up in my quilt and had a good nine hours of sleep that night. I went to the toilet at around 2am and the valley looked beautiful bathed in a full moon's light...lots of stars on display as it was so dark.

Heading for home: Hawdon Hut to Hawdon Campsite


I was up and getting ready to go at Sparrows which is to say about 7 am, I had breakfast and packed up and was out the door tramping for home by 8 am. It was a cool but clear day, a bit of frost on the open ground but once I got walking I soon warmed up.



Front view of Hawdon Hut on the next morning

Early morning sun hits the slopes opposite Hawdon Hut

It normal takes until around 10 am before the sun comes over the Blackball Range but it doesn't matter as it is light enough to walk from 6.30 am at this time of the year. By the time I was approaching the East Hawdon around 9 am the sun had started to warm the air.

I like to get up and get walking early...it is a good trick for maximizing your distances and photos taken in that early morning light have a certain appealing glow.


On the way back down valley, Hawdon Valley Track

Discovery Stream on the second day, Hawdon Valley Track

Hawdon Valley Track: crossing Discovery Stream on the way down valley

A bit of frost on the grass, Hawdon Valley Track

Gravel bashin' on the way down Hawdon Valley, Hawdon Valley Track

There is a possible problematic river crossing about 20 minutes from the hut at the start to the forest sidle track near the old hut site. The track climbs the slight rise seen in the photo below...the problem is the river can sometimes flow right up to the rock. You cannot work your way around this point as there are steep bluffs both before and after the small side stream.


If it has been raining you might find it difficult to gain the track...if so your best option is to return to the hut and wait for the river level to drop.



Possible river hazard point, Hawdon Valley Track

Track sidles alongside the Hawdon River, Hawdon Valley Track

There was a bit of frost at the old Hawdon Hut site...it probably got down to zero degrees overnight so it was not surprising. As I said previously the new hut site is much superior to the old one so at least some good came from the need to rebuild the hut.


Frosty grass at the old Hawdon Hut site, Hawdon Valley

Crossing one of the many side streams on the Hawdon Valley Track


Hawdon Valley Track, forest track down river from the old hut site

By the time I got down to the crossing point of the main Hawdon River the sun was out and warming up the valley. It is much easier heading down valley than up...you don't really notice the incline on the way to the hut but it does exist.

I saw a lot of deer and some pig sign as I was walking down valley so the beasties must have been out in force overnight feeding and generally carrying on...


Hawdon Valley Track: the sun finally reaches the river bank


Approaching the river crossing, mid valley, Hawdon Valley Track

I crossed the mid Hawdon River at the same point as the previous day...still an easy crossing as it had been dry for a couple of days before my trip.



Crossing the Hawdon River, up stream of East Hawdon confluence

Once over the main Hawdon River it was river terrace travel down to the East Hawdon confluence....


View down the Hawdon Valley from just above the East Hawdon 


..another easy crossing of the East Hawdon and surging onward towards the end of the track at Hawdon Shelter...hoping my car was still there!!!!


Crossing back over the East Hawdon river, Hawdon Valley Track

Last view of the Upper Hawdon Valley from near East Hawdon river

I shot off the main Hawdon Valley Track to visit the Hawdon Bivouac...have a look at the bottom of this post to see some photos of that bivouac and its surrounds.


Over the East Hawdon and heading towards the 4 W/D track, Hawdon Valley Track

Once past the Hawdon Bivouac it was onto the 4 W/D track and steady progress down the Hawdon Valley....



View of the Polar Range from the Hawdon Valley floor

Hawdon Valley Track: back on the 4 W/D track mid valley

The Black Range around Grassmere Station comes into view as you round a curve in the Valley...it is about four kilometres from here to the end of the track...



Distant view of the Black Range from the Hawdon Valley Track

Hawdon Valley Track: Blackball Ridge to right of photo

Once again I crossed over the Hawdon River in the middle of the valley...it would great if the track followed one side or the other up valley but of course that would spoil the fun of crossing numerous rivers and streams. 

Up until April of this year this part of the river was underground and this braid had little to no water in it. A big storm in that month has scoured out a new course...I imagine over time it too will slowly fill with gravel once more. 




Crossing the Hawdon River mid valley, Hawdon Valley Track

Mid Hawdon Valley....looking up river at the mid valley crossing point

Walking alongside the Hawdon River, Hawdon Valley Track

There are places where the 4 W/D track just disappears into gravel river beds...then it is 'make your own way' until you can find the track once again. Try to stay close to the edge of the Hawdon River as tramping along the bank usually makes for the best walking conditions. 

..the 4 Wheel Road to nowhere....Hawdon Valley Track


Rest spot mid valley, Hawdon Valley Track...my Atmos 55+ pack

I had a rest about two kilometres from the end of the track..it was starting to get hot out on that exposed plain so I had my hat on and sun screen applied. You have to watch the sun in New Zealand it will toast you if you don't cover up...



On the home stretch...two km's to go...Hawdon Valley Track

There are some nice gravel pinnacles near the end of the track...you can clearly see the layers in the exposed gravels. They periodically collapse and then wash down river...when I was up here back in 2014 this was an almost continuous cliff face.

The rain causes gullies which eventually destabilise and collapse down into the river to restore the riverbed...


The Hawdon Valley Pinnacles, Woolshed Hill in background

It is a short distance to the second to last crossing point over the Sudden Valley Stream...it can be a difficult crossing if it has been raining. 


Approaching the Sudden Valley Stream crossing, Hawdon Valley Track

Clear waters of  a low running Hawdon River, Hawdon Valley Track

I have a trip up the Sudden Valley on my to do list, unfortunately due to all the river travel and river crossings you need a week of fine weather beforehand. I will try to get up here in the middle of summer this year and camp near the bivouac while I explore the nearby valley. 

It all depends on the weather....bring on the sunny skies and warm weather!!!


Crossing Sudden Valley Stream, Sudden Valley in background

Crossing Sudden Valley Stream, Hawdon Valley Track

There is a stock exclusion fence across the lower Hawdon Valley as all the land above the fence is National Park. I noticed a bit of old cow dung up the valley so the recent winter storms must have damaged it somewhere...they are gone now so it appears to be repaired. 

Go through the gate...the fence is electric...don't zap yer groin folks!!!


The Hawdon Valley stock fence, Hawdon Valley Track

..Hawdon Shelter is over there....

Then it was just the crossing of the Hawdon River to contemplate...it is worth looking for the most shallow crossing point here. Try to cross well down river from the stop bank as the river spreads into a number of smaller braids.

When I crossed over on the Saturday the level was at the top of my gaiters..this is low to moderate flow. If it is getting up to your knees back out and look for a better crossing point. The water is swift so a depth above the knee is enough to knock you over. If you cannot find a safe crossing point go find another track to tramp.

Don't be an idiot and drown 300 meters from your car!!!


Contemplating the last river crossing, Hawdon Valley

Mid point in the Hawdon River Crossing...shallow shingle bank

...last braid of the Hawdon River...Hawdon Valley Track

...Hawdon Shelter is in the nearby forest tongue...

The stop bank built along the Hawdon River near Hawdon Shelter

Then it was just the last walk through the forest at the end of Woolshed Hill and the Hawdon Shelter hove into view. Lucky for Jon the bastid car vandals had not visited so I had a functioning & intact car to drive home...yay!!!!


Climbing the river terrace to Hawdon Shelter

Hawdon Valley Track...in the forest near the shelter

Hawdon Shelter and the end of the Hawdon Valley Track

So the end of another trip...sad in its way but also uplifting to be able to enjoy walking in nature with the sun on your face. It there any finer thing in the universe....

Dad...we will all miss you...you were a good man. 

Rest easy sailor....


A side trip to the Hawdon Valley Bivouac

While I was up the Hawdon Valley I took the opportunity to visit the Hawdon Bivouac. The biv is located in the tongue of bush just before the East Hawdon River confluence and is used by DOC for housing wildlife researchers who are working in the area. The East Hawdon is one of the last refugees of the Kakarirki a type of native parakeet as well as Kaka, Kiwi and Mohua. 



First sight of the Hawdon Bivouac, Arthur's Pass

The bivouac is set in a natural clearing in the forest, it is starting to regrow with ferns but in the summer it would be a nice sunny spot.

I would imagine it has a bit of a sandfly problem at times...the Hawdon Valley is sandfly heaven at the best of times.


Hawdon Bivouac: modified 2-3 person bivouac

Hawdon Bivouac: clearlite panels for added light inside

Hawdon Bivouac: large water tank but no taps outside the hut

The bivouac is a modified version of the 2 bunk bivy common in Arthur's Pass National Park, the modification being the addition of a third bunk. There are two bunk versions of this hut in Sudden Valley, East Hawdon and up the East Poulter. It would be tight but livable conditions for three people in this structure but as it sees little use that is acceptable. 

The biv is locked but from the outside it appears to have solar power (for lights and a radio...???) and they have a large rainwater tank fitted. There is a small veranda with a picnic table so I imagine that is where the occupants spend a lot of their time. 


The view as I was leaving Hawdon Bivouac, Arthur's Pass NP

If you ever happen to be the Hawdon Valley look for the short track running off the main 4 W/D track leading up the valley. The hut is about 100 meters inside the bush-line but there are no markers as DOC are not all that keen for people to know the bivy is there. 

Another off the hut bagging list for those of you who count your back country hut visits...180 and counting for Jon.



Access: Turn off SH7 Christchurch to Kumara at Mt White Station Road, cross Waimakiriri River on Mt White Bridge and follow signs to Hawdon Campsite. There are DOC trail markers to the crossing of the main Hawdon River.
Track Times: 3-4 hours to Hawdon Hut, 1.5 hours return to East Hawdon River confluence
Hut Details: Hawdon Hut: serviced, 18 bunks, wood burner, water tank, wood shed, toilets: Hawdon Bivouac: DOC use only, 3 bunks, water tank, toilet: Hawdon Shelter: campsite shelter, toilets, open fireplace, water from main Hawdon River (treat before use)
Miscellaneous: The Hawdon River is impassible in any kind of rain, there are at least eight compulsory easy to moderate river crossings so do not attempt to visit if it is raining. The gravel road to the Hawdon Campsite can be flooded in very heavy rain. Beware there have been car break-ins at the Hawdon Shelter car park.