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Ascent of Tapuae-o-Uenuku on 2019-03-09

Climber: Duncan Lennon

Date:Saturday, March 9, 2019
Ascent Type:Unsuccessful - Turned Back
Peak:Tapuae-o-Uenuku
    Location:New Zealand
    Elevation:0 ft / 0 m

Ascent Trip Report

It was raining and the forecasts showed no sign of abatement. I packed four days of food and set off anyway, hoping to wait out the weather in the huts. Unfortunately I'd completed all of the Hodder fords and was approaching the huts when a local mountain athlete called Nigel came running down and implored me to turn back. He'd climbed this peak in the 90s but had just had a serious scare, getting lost in a whiteout high on the mountain. Now he was concerned about the rising waters and shook his head at my plan. "Mate," he admonished, "you know we've got to get out of here." I did know. We aided each other through the 50-60 fords, now knee-to-hip deep, and finally we popped out at the cars. I'd been traveling for nine hours and had basically nothing to show for it except a particularly thorough wetness. Nigel's best friends owned a sheep station just a few kilometers up the Awatere Valley. We repaired there and had hot showers, tons of food, tea, and great chat with this awesome family. I believe I would have summited had I stuck around, but I'm in NZ relatively frequently for work so will reattempt Tappy next time.
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