Send a St Bernard to the rescue (If you haven’t heard from me in a week)

It seems like a long time has passed since I booked my trip to climb in the Southern Alps of New Zealand. 

But the time has arrived.

St Bernard Rescue DogI head off early Saturday morning, flying across “The Ditch” into Queenstown in the South Island, before making my way by bus to Wanaka, about an hour’s drive away.

On Sunday I will be flying into the mountains by either helicopter or ski-plane with Richard Raynes, from Adventure Consultants.

Richard has a first class climbing pedigree and has previously worked for the Mt Cook Search and Rescue team. We will spend a couple of hours walking across the Bonar Glacier to Colin Todd Hut, although we may elect to camp out on Bevan Col, depending on the Hut availability and weather conditions at the time.

Mt Aspiring

On or around day five, which should be Thursday 10 January, we will make our summit attempt on Mt Aspiring.  The day will be long, starting around 3am in the morning and finishing as late as 7pm.

And there are no guarantees on making it to the summit, but of course that is our goal and we will be giving it our best shot!

After a hike out from Mt Aspiring I will be returning to Wanaka to spend a few days resting with Janet and TomO, by the shores of Lake Wanaka, before heading back into the mountains for another week of climbing, this time with Steve Moffatt, Adventure Consultant’s program co-ordinator.

Steve has climbed all around the world, has summitted Mt Everest, and lead many mountaineering trips, including Lobuche East in Nepal. I will be travelling to Nepal in November this year to climb Lobuche East, Island Peak, and Pokalde. The first two are in excess of 6,000 metres, and Pokalde is just under 6,000 metres.

Baz - Fox Glacier, New Zealand

My second week will be less structured and we will look to climb a variety of peaks focussing on different aspects of mountaineering.

I am in good hands and I have a great opportunity to learn from these two very experienced climbers.

Grey's Peak, Fox Glacier, New Zealand
Grey’s Peak, Fox Glacier, New Zealand

And although the peaks in the Southern Alps of New Zealand are only just over 3,000 metres in height, they are similar in ruggedness and valley to summit altitude gains to the higher peaks of the Himalaya’s, and for this reason it is a great training ground for my rather audacious plan to climb Mt Everest…

Mind you, it is also a wonderful place to visit and the people are friendly and welcoming.

And at the end of two weeks of climbing, Janet, TomO, and I will be spending a few days in Wanaka taking in the local sights and resting by the lake, before heading to Queenstown for a few days.

Janet and TomO

Janet and TomO won’t be sitting around whilst I’m climbing and their activities include a helicopter flight onto Fox Glacier, giving them a first hand view of where I was climbing last September, before heading down to Milford Sound for a couple of days.

They will also be retracing the Coast to Coast Adventure Race route. Janet and TomO assisted me in getting through this event across New Zealand last February…and will no doubt be there to support me in 2014’s race!

Anyway, there will be no communication access, other than satellite phone for emergencies, so I’ll let you know how it goes, along with some pictures, when I get back to Wanaka.

Hopefully I will be able to report a successful summit of Mt Aspiring, but even if I don’t there is little doubt in my mind that I will be reporting two weeks of fantastic climbing and fun…

Janet will be updating The Landy on Facebook and hopefully with news on Mt Aspiring so be sure to click on the link and follow our adventures!

And importantly, remember, if all else fails, remain out of control and see what develops…

22 thoughts on “Send a St Bernard to the rescue (If you haven’t heard from me in a week)

  1. Alarna Rose Gray January 11, 2013 / 5:41 am

    Have a fabulous time – look forward to hearing all about it!


    • Baz - The Landy January 14, 2013 / 4:33 am

      Thanks, I’m just catching up. Had a great time, and back into the mountains this coming Tuesday for more!


  2. sweetlybalanced January 10, 2013 / 9:44 pm

    I’ve always wanted to go on a helicopter flight!! Can’t wait to hear about the climb!!


    • Baz - The Landy January 14, 2013 / 4:32 am

      Howdy…well had a great time, but the weather wasn’t on our side and we had to turn back halfway into it…


    • Baz - The Landy January 14, 2013 / 4:31 am

      Thankyou…I will need to see what I have to do. In New Zealand climbing at the moment!


    • Baz - The Landy January 14, 2013 / 4:36 am

      Thankyou…I will need to take a look at what I need to do! And appreciate this!


      • tinatimebomb January 15, 2013 / 12:40 am

        Your welcome, thank you for your exciting blogging and Happy New 2013 to you and yours


  3. 7feetnorth January 6, 2013 / 6:55 am

    Can’t wait to hear about your climbs! Stay safe!


    • Baz - The Landy January 14, 2013 / 4:36 am

      Thankyou…I’m just catching up, back from Mt Aspiring, but we had to turn back half-way in due to weather. More climbing next week! Have you done any camping recently?


  4. barbara grandberg January 6, 2013 / 6:09 am

    late to the party…hope all is going well :}


  5. Deliberately Delicious January 4, 2013 / 5:28 pm

    I’ve been neglecting my blogging, so might have missed my opportunity to wish you well. My thoughts will be with you, Baz. Have an amazing time and stay safe!


    • Baz - The Landy January 4, 2013 / 5:34 pm

      Thank you…safety first for sure, fun a close second! Take care…


  6. luggagelady January 4, 2013 / 2:45 pm

    Godspeed…be safe — and have a blast!!!! 🙂


    • Baz - The Landy January 4, 2013 / 2:50 pm

      Thankyou….safety is number one priority, having a blast is so close behind!


  7. sarahsdoodles January 4, 2013 / 10:42 am

    Hiking from 3 a.m. until 7 p.m.? I can’t even imagine! I’ll be thinking of you during your endeavors! Stay safe and soak everything in. I have no doubt it will be an amazing experience!


    • Baz - The Landy January 4, 2013 / 11:06 am

      Thank you Sarah, and hopefully it won’t be that long, but who knows!!


  8. alissadoherty January 4, 2013 / 9:14 am

    Wow, can’t wait to read about this trip. I hope there is favorable weather your way!


    • Baz - The Landy January 4, 2013 / 9:33 am

      Quite windy and snow at present, but improving!


  9. Sas January 4, 2013 / 6:19 am

    Wow, that makes the 6a I just climbed at the local wall seem pathetic 🙂 Good luck with your trip. I don’t use Facebook, but I can’t wait to hear all about it when you get back. I know you’ll make it to Everest one day.


    • Baz - The Landy January 4, 2013 / 6:58 am

      Thanks…and no, it isn’t pathetic! It’s all good fun. And fingers crossed for Everest, but you know, it is just one step at a time, one foot in front of the other until you get there!…Cheers Baz


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