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Expedition Fund Grants Approved – 2020 (Round 1)

Ettiakup aka Puncak Trikora (4,750m) northern side of mountain

The Expedition Fund Committee are pleased to announce that the following grants have been approved for the 2020 round one:

$1500 – New route and exploration of Ettiakup (Puncak Trikora), Papua Province, Indonesia: Liam Pyott and Cameron Jardell. The image featured is of Ettiakup aka Puncak Trikora (4,750m) northern side (credit: from the application).

$2000 – New routes on Mt Loki and Mt Frigga, Baffin Island, Canada: Petrouchka Steiner-Grierson, Owen Ta-yuan Lee and Asher March (with non-member Maria Parkes).

$1200 – First NZ (third overall) ascent of the North Face of Changabang, Garhwal Himalaya, India: Alastair McDowell and Steven Fortune (subject to permit)

$600   – Solo first ascent of the full West Ridge of Tirsuli West (7035m), Garhwal Himalaya, India: Ben Dare (subject to permit)

A full list of past grant recipients and more Fund information can be found on the Expedition Fund webpage.


Posted: 09/03/20

Posted By: Margaret McMahon

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NZAC Recycling News

example of book with compostable wrap for posting

Here at the NZAC’s National Office, we are keen to bring in changes to help lessen our environmental impact and encourage greater recycling opportunities.

The main barrier (apart from added cost) has actually been sourcing the right products and finding companies that can provide for our needs. This is an ongoing and evolving process. As better options become available we will switch to those where possible.

Initially, I think the first two items pushed for were to change our flow-wrap materials and promote the use of environmentally friendly cleaning products to be used in our huts. The following is where we are at now and in the 2020 New Year you will notice other changes coming through. This is just a beginning as once you change one way of doing things, you soon discover there is still so much more that can be done.

Suggestions and names of enviro-product suppliers are always welcome. As is advice on sourcing new suppliers who demonstrate they have environmental processes in place. Please email me with your ideas, thanks: Margaret.

Huts: Use of environmentally friendly products for cleaning are promoted. Volunteers who supply and maintain huts for us are encouraged to use and purchase enviro products in preference to standard alternatives.

Publications: Printed by Spectrum Print, Christchurch, who hold Enviro-Mark Gold and Forrest Stewardship Council Certifications.

Flow wrap: Our quarterly magazine, The Climber and annual NZ Alpine Journal are sent out flow-wrapped in their thousands each year. In recent times we switched from plastic to biodegradable wrap and with the 2019 issue of the Journal and 2020 summer The Climber we are changing to a compostable wrap instead. Long-term members will likely remember that the Journal did go out in a light cardboard box in the past but the vagaries of weather and the resulting complaints from water damaged items meant this couldn’t be an option to return to. Our first use of the compostable wrap for the Journal wasn’t fully successful as it hasn’t proved robust enough. We will work on this with the printers but continue to use this product for our magazines, which are lighter and have no sharp corners to damage the wrapping in transit.

Suppliers: Expectations on suppliers to the Club are another area where those with a better environmental record may find they are more likely to be the ones we chose.  As with our printer above, another example is a switch of poo pot supplier. NZ owned and operated Pharmapac, new to supplying NZAC in late 2019 holds a Diamond Standard Toitu Enviro Mark

Stationery: The National Office has joined Terracycle to recycle and take drop-offs of plastic stationery items. See the NZ Terracyle website to learn more. This is the link for Terracylce International options. This news post details items that can be dropped in for recycling: NZAC Joins Terracycle.

Products: We have confirmation from the Ministry for the Environment that the compostable cornstarch bags used as human-waste containment bags in our poo pots are not covered by the new ban on all plastic/biodegradable/compostable bags.

Packaging: This is the newest area being worked on. In the New Year, we will be phasing out bubble wrap with the introduction of  Eco-wrap. Courier packaging is going to be a bit of a harder transition. We will be able to phase in compostable bags for larger orders and local deliveries but are not fully able to do away with the plastic courier bags for smaller orders just yet. As with the mention above of cardboard being used in the past for the Journal, paper and card aren’t going to be the solution for us. However, please know we are in transition and will continue with the push to switch over entirely to more environmentally friendly products as we can source alternatives.

One downside of the compostable change is compostable products can only go into the Council Red Bins and not the Green, or Yellow if you don’t have a suitable home composting system for them. However, overall a much better solution than either plastic or biodegradable products. Online apps producing eco-friendly courier labels to go on compostable bags may be a future option but aren’t possible for us at present. We will continue to work with our courier companies who promise change for the better is definitely in their plans.

So a work in progress, which we will continue to expand on as we go forward.


Posted: 17/12/19

Posted By: Margaret McMahon

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NZAC Joins Terracycle – Writing Instrument Recycling

pens writing instruments

The NZAC National Office has joined Terracyle’s partnership with BIC for their ‘Writing Instrument Recycling Programme‘.  Due to there being a drop-off depot close to the Club’s National Office already we are collecting and taking items to that location in the XCHC Cafe close by. See the above programme link for acceptable items  (check the kids felt pen collections – they don’t have to be BIC products) and feel free to drop them into the office next time you are passing, or directly to the Cafe. Should an opening come up for NZAC to support its own charity of choice we are waitlisted for our own depot. In the meantime, we are doing our bit to recycle what would previously have gone to landfill from the office.

Funds raised go to The Conscious Club which is a non-profit organisation that organise sustainable and ethical events in Christchurch the money goes towards organising events that raise awareness and social and environmental issues. There is a black bin as you walk in the cafe, but if you ask the staff at the cafe he will point you in the right direction. The Club office has a box on the ground floor at reception 6/6 Raycroft St, Waltham.


What is TerraCycle?

TerraCycle is Eliminating the Idea of Waste® by recycling the “non-recyclable.” Whether it’s coffee capsules from your home, pens from a school, or plastic gloves from a manufacturing facility, TerraCycle can collect and recycle almost any form of waste. We partner with individual collectors such as yourself, as well as major consumer product companies, retailers, manufacturers, municipalities, and small businesses across 20 different countries. With your help, we are able to divert millions of pounds of waste from landfills and incinerators each month. See this link to find drop-off locations near you. Terracycle drop-off locations in New Zealand.

For our Australian members, here is the locator map to find who is recycling in your region, or to join the programme (note loads slowly) Terracycle drop-off locations in Australia

Posted: 07/11/19

Posted By: Margaret McMahon

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Expedition Fund Grants Approved – 2019 Round Two

The Expedition Fund Committee is pleased to announce that grants have been approved for the following 2019 second-round applications:

$1200 – First ascent of summits in the Western Torugart Too range, Kyrgyzstan: Jenna and Rob Hughes-Games (NZAC members within a larger group).

$1400 – Kayak and ski mountaineering approach to the first ascent of summits around Southern and Northern Patagonia Icefields, Chile: Marian Krogh and Gabrielle Degagne (with Stephanie Jones).

A full list of past grant recipients and more Fund information can be found on the Expedition Fund webpage.

Posted: 12/09/19

Posted By: Margaret McMahon

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Aerial Possum Control – Project Southern Ruapehu 2019

Southern Ruapehu Predator Control July-Aug 2019

Aerial possum control – Project Southern Ruapehu

This is to advise that OSPRI New Zealand is planning an aerial operation to target possums in the Ruapehu area during Winter/Spring 2019.  This operation will help reduce the possum population to prevent the spread of bovine tuberculosis (TB).

The operation is scheduled to begin prefeeding in July 2019, with the toxic application occurring from August, but timing will be weather-dependent. Please find enclosed an operational fact sheet that includes a map of the proposed operational area; alternatively, please refer to the factsheet online: We kindly request you read this carefully, as it contains information about the operation.  The operation will be using sodium fluoroacetate, also known as 1080.  For further information on 1080, please visit

TBfree New Zealand has contracted Epro Ltd to carry out this aerial operation. Their contact details are:

Contact Person Phone Email
Operational Controller 0800 ASK EPRO (0800 275 3776) [email protected]

Consultation has been occurring since August 2018 via the 2019 National Plan for TBfree Pest Control Operations document, and we are now conducting further consultation with the local community and other interested parties. Following this, final operational plans will be prepared, and permission will be sought from all consenting authorities. These will include affected landowners, Medical Officer of Health, and the Department of Conservation.

For further details on this operation or the OSPRI New Zealand programme, please contact us on 06 353 2710, or email [email protected].

Southern Ruapehu Predator Control PDF Information

Yours sincerely
Alan Innes
Programme Manager
North Island Region
OSPRI New Zealand Limited

Posted: 17/06/19

Posted By: Margaret McMahon

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Veteran’s Meet 1990 – Arthur’s Pass

In 1990 the New Zealand Alpine Club held a Veteran members meet at the Club’s Arthur’s Pass Lodge. This was a chance for a get-together and hike in the local area, including one to Lake Kaurapataka, followed by a dinner and speeches featuring the then Club President Geoff Gabites.

The following film was passed in to us as a VHS tape and has now been converted to a digital format so that we are able to share this with you via the Club’s Vimeo account. The film link will also remain on the Club Archive webpage for future viewing. A direct link is provided here for your initial look: NZAC Veterans’ Meet 1990.

We would love to hear from members who could put some names to faces seen throughout this video. Perhaps using the initial scene in Arthur’s Pass Lodge so that we can make a diagram up of who is who. Noted during the filming is that a still image was also taken of the group. Does anyone have a copy of this image for our Archives, please? Or perhaps you are in this film and have some personal photos you would like to share?

Half-way through Jack Ede makes an appearance for the Lake Kaurapataka hike and there are others who just came to attend the celebratory dinner that it would be nice to add to the list of names. Please contact Margaret if you have any further information to add. Thank you.


Posted: 29/03/19

Posted By: Margaret McMahon

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New Zealand Alpine Journal – Digital Version 1892-2014

Accessible, digital New Zealand Alpine Journal 1892-2014 live and online

In 2015 NZAC accepted the generous offer of Claudia Posch and Gerhard Rampl at Innsbruck University, Austria to scan and digitise NZAJ 1892-2014, and to prepare it for access via the internet. More than 17,500 pages were scanned, and using automated text recognition software Transkribus, turned into machine-readable text. This generally worked well but created some problems which required further work. For example, specks and blemishes from typesetting lead to text recognition errors and the software occasionally errs — ‘tollipirue Briefens, for example, needed manual correction to ‘Alpine reflections’. Project editors at Innsbruck University and seven NZAC volunteers have corrected these types of errors to get a clean text.

A crowdfunding campaign during January 2017 was generously supported by NZAC members and raised $8,800. Those funds enabled Innsbruck University to appoint Milena Peralta Friedburg to support the project and Milena’s work has been superb together with the NZAC volunteers editing the online journals. The editing task is labour-intensive requiring over 1500 hours work but is now almost completed.

Readers have two options: you can search across all volumes using ‘Search’, and you can access single volumes via the ‘Content’ menu. Access by volume has an extended user interface where you can also view (and copy) the transcript. This is not the case with the search results page where (because of technical reasons) you can only see the page-images.

Read more about Transkribus the associate READ project assisted creation of the website where you can access the digitised NZAJ directly

A link to the digital library can always be found on the NZAC Archives webpage as well.


  1. Should you find any significant error (such as a page missing for example) in the digital archive, please advise the Club via this email.
  2. Searching for an article or topic in the digital NZAJ can be assisted by making use of the PDF NZAJ Index 1892­ – 2016 which, once downloaded, is searchable using the Find function.

Posted: 27/03/19

Posted By: Margaret McMahon

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Godley Hut Repaint 2019

Thank you to our recent Godley work-party volunteers, Ian Rogers, Derek Holmes, Syd Woods and Mark Easton. Their hard work brightening up our much-loved Club Hut with its new high-vis colour scheme is greatly appreciated.

Thanks also to the Department of Conservation who supplied the paint to carry out this makeover.


Posted: 26/03/19

Posted By: Margaret McMahon

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Expedition Fund Grants Approved – 2019

The Expedition Fund Committee are pleased to announce that grants have been approved for the following 2019 round:

$1800 – Adventure ski descents from peaks accessed from Sughat village, Pamir mountains, Tajikistan (main image): Ryan Taylor, Peter Biskind and Elliot Smith.

$1100 – Adventure ski descents from Sugarloaf (6455m), the twins (7004m) and Nepal Peak (7168m), Sikkim, India: Alex Geary and Josh Douglas (with an international team). Awaiting permit approval.

$800 – First ascent of Link Sar (7041m), Kondus Valley, Karakorum mountains, Pakistan: Graham Zimmerman (with USA-based team Chris Wright, Steve Swenson, Mark Richey).

A full list of past grant recipients and more Fund information can be found on the Expedition Fund webpage.

The Committee would also like to pass on their sincere thanks to the anonymous donor of $10,000 to the Fund. This has enabled them to feel more secure in the grants given out at this level.

Posted: 21/03/19

Posted By: Margaret McMahon

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“Mt Egmont” Opening the New Syme Hut

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision is a charitable trust. They care for an ever-growing collection of films, radio, television, sound recordings, props and documents spanning 120 years of Aotearoa’s sound and moving image history.

Preparing the ground for Syme Hut 1929-30 Credit: Denis Arthur Carty

This 8:58 minute black and white film from their archives shows the opening of Syme Hut on Mt Egmont (Taranaki) on the 6th of April 1930. Please follow this link to view: “Mt Egmont” Opening the new Syme Hut

The obituary for Rod Syme, after who the hut is named, is from the 1994 NZ Alpine Journal.

The still images are from the NZAC’s archives and were donated by the family of Denis Arthur Carty (NZAJ 1976).

Posted: 13/03/19

Posted By: Margaret McMahon

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