Monday, December 15, 2008

Upper Hokitika - GORGEous

After a night out with the boys in Hokitika we got up early and headed out towards the Hokitika/Whitcombe Valley. As we were gearing up a maroon Toyota Surf came charging around the corner with Kev England and Keith Riley in it. I quietly thought to myself, "yes, we have a guide". However, this was a double edged sword as the first thing Kev said was, "this is a juicy flow'. Mike was pretty nervous in the helicopter, only because of the flying, but when we got dropped off it was me who was nervous. As soon as we put on the nerves subsided and the Upper Hoki experience began.

Kev showing the North Island boys

Sam styling it

Scouting the waterfall

Kev firing it up

Sam on the waterfall

Brad on the waterfall

Mikey Drop

Inside the second gorge

Below the tight corner drop - second gorge

Me watching Keith come down

Brad hucking into the new drop

Sam on the new drop

Kev doing it in style


The Gates of Argonath

The Upper Hokitika was an amazing run, with unbelievable scenery, stout whitewater and a real adventure feel to it. Cheers to the boys for giving me the invite and to Kev for saving us a lot of scouting. I cannot wait to get back on this run and plenty of other runs of this caliber.

Got to get some action - Upper Kakapotahi then what?

Over the last couple of weeks all I had been able to get on was a couple of runs down the Styx and even with good flows I was starting to feel the itch. Barny mentioned some of the boys were in town so I packed up my car and headed down to Hokitika to see what was up.

Classic class IV creeking.

Styx boulder gardens.

The afternoon I arrived there I met up with Mike Dawson, Dylan Thompson, Sam Sutton and Big Bad Brad Lauder. After a brief introduction we were en route to the Upper Kakapotahi for a lazy afternoon after creeking. Simon and Bill Shepperd were at the get out waiting for us and before soon we were on the water and squeezing down the narrow entrance slot. Here are some photos of the run courtesy of Mike.

Sam on Postmans Falls

Me on Postmans

Mike having fun in his plastic boat on Airmail

Bradley throwing down

Dylan stomping out Airmail

Loving my life at this moment.

The Upper Kakapotahi just added to my hunger for whitewater. The plan was for the Upper Hokitika the next day which had plenty of water and was going to be my first trip down it. Surely this would mean an early night... Yeah Right!!! Here is a couple of photos to illustrate how wild that night ended up.

Quiet post paddle drinks

This was less than two hours later (about 10pm) and we were out until about 4am...
not need to guess how things went

Friday, October 31, 2008


The weekend was approaching, fine weather was the forecast and plans for boating were starting to develop. Barny and myself had great plans of hiking into the Arahura, staying in a hut and paddling out the next day. About five minutes after Gareth arrived at the team meeting at Stumpers Bar and Cafe he was on the phone to Dando organizing our heli into the Waitaha, flight time 9.30am. An 'over punctual' Gareth made sure he, Mike, Barny, Simon and myself were at the pick up at 8.30am... Perfect weather, perfect day for kayaking.

Dando knows where to go

Gareth warming into it

My coach Barny watching from the eddy


Barny Young, come on down.

Centre right on the second of the big three.

Gareth getting it done

Barny on the Cave Rapid

Gareth on the lead in to the cave

Hitting the line

Me on the lead in to the cave

Line it up and...


Mike coming in hot

Getting a little left but its all good!!

Off into the blue and towards the portage.

The Waitaha is an amazing river with some of the best scenery I have ever experienced. The white-water is full on and I am looking forward to go back in at a bit of a higher flow. Cheers to Barny and Gareth for showing Simon, Mike and Myself down and cheers to Mike for the majority of the photos.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Arahura on the down-LOW

Fresh back from the USA, new boat sent down from the boys at Bliss-Stick and a group of keen CPIT boys all lead to my first trip down the Arahura for the season. Jamie, Jared, Sam, Chee, Angus, Buttaz and myself picked our way down a low Arahura on god days of rest and had a great time doing it. A great way to open up the paddling season.

Who needs a carry system, Dando has cam-stramps

Dando dropping of some more CPIT boys

Me new mystic

Buttaz on the first drop

Trying my best on a LOW Dent Falls

Jared contemplating Billiards

Jamie on Billiards

Jared's first Billiards

The final boof of Billiards

Giving it on Cess-Pit

The lead out of Cess-Pit and the end of a great day

Cheers to the CPIT boys for giving me the call and the photos.