New Zealand in Feburary? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 12-06-2009   #1
 
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New Zealand in Feburary?

I'll have a few weeks and I'm looking to get out. How's the boating? All dried up or just in time for the flows to drop in on the gnar? Looking for class V, preferably multidays. Would Chile be a better choice?
Joe

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Old 12-06-2009   #2
 
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Joe, not sure about the season in either place, but we should rally for sure, I graduate on the 20th and will be looking to relax and get rad. I am home in a week, lets fire it up bud!
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Old 12-06-2009   #3
 
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Hell yea! Bummed I couldn't make it out yonder, but it'll be great to see you. I'm looking at the last two weeks in Feb - you interested?
Joe
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Old 12-06-2009   #4
 
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Hey Man,

I'm planning on three months there next year. A little work and lotsa play. I hear nursing work is easy to come by if your interested. What happened of you moving to a more metro area. You leaving Denver?

Parker
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Old 12-06-2009   #5
 
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Yo parker! You gonna be there in Feb? I've also heard that nursing work is pretty easy to come by. I am tragically leaving D-town next summer.
Joe
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Old 12-06-2009   #6
 
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get in touch with Kilyk and Mo, I think my brother was down there for the last part of January and February and he seemed to get on some good stuff.
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Old 12-06-2009   #7
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I don't think that's the best time for the classics on the west coast of the south island, but there is rainfed water year round, depending on storms. The big water runs near queenstown on the kawarau are always in (citroen = IV+/V; nevis bluff = V+(+)), but they are pretty much short stretchs of intense rapids. Stuff near Murchison -- more play oriented -- is in frequently. Rangitata near christchurch is always in. And classics on the north island like the wairoa are frequently in. In short, probably stuff to run, maybe lots with good luck on rain timing. But there may be better kayaking destinations that time of year. Check in with the bliss-stick guys. I also have the guidebook if you want to check it out.
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Old 12-07-2009   #8
 
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NZ: Parts of the west coast get about 7 meters of rain per year (south island)- and it gets this rain all through the year. There is always something running near Hokitika. The runs are catagorized by: 1) run it before it rains (glacial- get too big when it rains), 2) run it while it rains (tiny drainage) 3) run it after it rains (larger drainage, or less discharge from a glacier, etc.).

I was there last January and February and it's a fine time of year to be there. The steep stuff is intense, and it can be difficult (hit or miss) to find boating partners that are willing to randomly pay money and jump in a helicopter to paddle hard stuff w/ a guy they met at a camp ground. Many of the runs around Hokitika are helicopter in, and if you can't run it, then helicopter out. They like to get groups of 4ppl for the choppers. The pilots were talking about guys who would try to hike out and whose bodies have never been found from the hikes.

For overnight options, the general scheme is the further up a drainage [west coast of the south island] the steeper it gets. Typically, there are many landing zones the choppers can fly into on any given drainage. I only did day runs, preferring to longer days verses heavier boats, though there are huts by some of the runs, and you could just go further upstream. Some of the runs are a hike in or really muddy 4 wheel driving. Amazing creeking. Amazing sights. Quite expensive country.

I recall Chile being good this time of year, but when I was there it was starting to dry up by February- I have no idea of this is typical. MUCH cheaper. Lots of first descents still going on down there. Many boaters like to start out near Pucon. Lots of good creeking around Pucon, and good bus service to it too. I got on very limited number of runs in Chile so I can't tell you much more than that. Getting to lots of the rivers, finding gas stations, trying to get any beta about the runs, and issues such as that can be much more of a hassle.

Cheers!
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Old 12-08-2009   #9
 
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Joe, Ken Oliver is there now. Likely will be there still in Feb. Email me and I can get you his contact info. He's been there for a month and likely can give you all the Beta.
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Old 12-08-2009   #10
 
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Joe - when I was in NZ I hoit lots of west coast runs in Feb and thought it was the perfect time to be there.

I think you can get on more good shit cheaper, easier and more plentifully in Chile though. You're not paying for helis to get on the good shit and the levels seem to be less finicky.

Either way, you can't go wrong.

BTW - NZ is more hard ass and kinda scary boulder garden character (for the most part) while CHile is more clean waterfalls, bedrock and some bouder garden combo and seemed way less sievvy.
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