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Wellington

about the region

 

Wellington is famous for the breeze that’s been known to pick up from time to time but perhaps not so well known for being a rock climbing destination. In truth the greater Wellington region provides a range of rock climbing opportunities for climbers at all levels and all within easy travelling distance. From the bouldering opportunities at Baring Head to some other delightful seaside climbing, Wellington has a lot to offer. When it comes to alpine climbing, generally you will find Wellington climbers heading north to the Tongariro area and across to Taranaki or making the trek to the South Island. The Tararua range in the winter also provide climbers with a chance to get their crampons and axes out.


The section

The Wellington section of the NZ Alpine Club has a large, active membership. The section runs both rock and alpine courses each year and provides support to enable members to develop their climbing skills through subsidised club trips. An annual photo competition takes place in the middle of the year providing budding photographers with an opportunity to show off their skills and be in for a prize or two.

 

Meetings

The Wellington section meets on the last Wednesday of each month at 6pm at the Third Eye Tuatara Brewery on Arthur Street, Wellington. Generally the evening will consist of a brief update from the committee, a presentation from a climbing personality and an opportunity to chat and network with other section members over a drink.


Courses

Registration for our 2018 Snowcraft courses is open although all courses are now full. To register for a waitlist on a course please email wellington@alpineclub.org.nz

2018 Snowcraft Course Dates

Course  Dates
Beginner 19th and 27th-29th July Course now full – waitlist available, please enquire at wellington@alpineclub.org.nz

26th July and 3rd – 5th August – Course now full – waitlist available, please enquire at wellington@alpineclub.org.nz

9th August and 17th – 19th August Course now full – waitlist available, please enquire at wellington@alpineclub.org.nz

Intermediate 9th August and 17th – 19th August Course now full – waitlist available, please enquire at wellington@alpineclub.org.nz

16th August and 24th – 26th August Course now full – waitlist available, please enquire at wellington@alpineclub.org.nz

Advanced 16th August and 24th – 26th August Course now full – waitlist available, please enquire at wellington@alpineclub.org.nz

The gear list for snowcraft courses can be found here : Snowcraft Course Gear List

Information on what is covered on each course is available below.

Note : To be eligible for these courses you must be available to attend the start of the course on the Thursday night and be able to depart Wellington in time to arrive at Whakapapa by 8:30pm on the Friday night. This usually means leaving Wellington by 3pm at the latest.

Course content is subject to change based on weather and other factors.

Beginner Course Outline

The purpose of the Beginner Snowcraft Course is to provide an introduction to travelling in low-angle alpine terrain where snow and ice may be encountered but rope protection is not required for safety. It is designed for individuals who have little to no experience in an alpine environment and focuses on personal preparation and movement on snow.

The course covers an introduction to:

  • Personal : Fitness, clothing, food and equipment
  • Environment : Weather, terrain, snowpack and avalanche
  • Travel : navigation, on snow travel with and without crampons, use of ice axe, step cutting, self-arrest
  • Shelters : type and use
  • Emergencies and what to do

On completion, the participant will be able to:

  • Identify personal fitness, clothing, food and equipment requirements
  • Identify alpine terrain features
  • Recognise the main weather characteristics that affect travel, the snow pack and avalanche conditions
  • Travel on snow in low-angle terrain with an ice axe and with or without crampons
  • Identify possible emergency situations and response

Intermediate Course Outline

The purpose of the Intermediate Snowcraft course is to provide fundamental alpine skills for travelling in low-angle alpine terrain up to 30º where a rope may be required for protection. It is designed for individuals who have limited experience in alpine terrain and are looking for an entry-level course in mountaineering. It develops on the core lessons taught in the Beginner Snowcraft Course and introduces the use of ropes, harnesses and anchors required for protection when travelling in steeper terrain.

The course covers furthering understanding of:

  • Personal : Fitness, clothing, food and equipment
  • Environment : Weather, terrain, snowpack and avalanche
  • Travel : navigation, on snow travel with crampons, ice axe, ropes, harness and anchors
  • Shelters : type and use
  • Emergencies and what to do

On completion, the participant will be able to:

  • Correctly fit a harness
  • Demonstrate a fundamental understanding of risk management through awareness of alpine hazards including surface conditions, avalanche danger, terrain factors and weather
  • Tie appropriate knots for alpine use
  • Set up a belay according to current accepted practice
  • Set up snow anchors
  • Demonstrate an understanding of weather in an alpine environment
  • Establish an emergency shelter in the alpine setting and begin to understanding the requirements of emergency management
  • Have a basic knowledge of avalanche phenomena
  • Familiarity and basic use of avalanche rescue equipment

Advanced Snowcraft Course Outline

The purpose of the Advanced Snowcraft course is to provide extended coaching alpine skills for travelling in moderate to steep angle alpine terrain where pitching is required to progress. It is designed for individuals who have reasonable experience in alpine terrain and are looking develop further techniques in mountaineering in order to access more routes. It develops on the core lessons taught in the Beginner and Intermediate Snowcraft Course and introduces concepts of movement and travel over a wider range of snow and mixed terrain.

The course covers furthering understanding of:

  • Personal : Fitness, clothing, food and equipment
  • Environment : Weather, terrain, snowpack and avalanche
  • Travel : navigation, on snow travel with crampons, ice axe, ropes, harness and anchors
  • Shelters : type and use
  • Emergencies and what to do

On completion, the participant will be able to:

  • Demonstrate a detailed understanding of risk management through awareness of alpine hazards including surface conditions, avalanche danger, terrain factors and weather
  • Tie appropriate knots for alpine use
  • Set up a belay according to current accepted practice
  • Set up snow anchors
  • Demonstrate ability to travel safely and manage risk in an alpine environment.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of weather in an alpine environment
  • Establish an emergency shelter in the alpine setting and begin to understanding the requirements of emergency management
  • Show competency in avalanche rescue equipment

Trips

The club runs a variety of trips in both the North and South Islands. Trips are pitched at different levels to provide opportunities to those who are just starting out as climbers through to those climbers with more experience. Tukino is proving to be a popular destination for rock, general alpine and ice climbing as well as ski touring.

 


Gear Hire

The club has a number of PLBs available for section members to use – club trips have priority over individuals. We also have ice axes, helmets, avo gear and crampons available for hire. Complete the form if you’d like to hire gear.

 

Wellington Section committee

Committee Email: wellington@alpineclub.org.nz

Name Role
Simon Williamson Chair
Carolyn Ellis Secretary, Gear Custodian
Vacant Treasurer
Peter Laurenson Newsletter ‘Vertigo’ Editor, Section Night Co-ordinator
Eric Duggan Trip Co-ordinator
Keith Munro Club Liaison
Marie Kelly Social media
Guy Dubuis
Committee member
Matt Pemberton
Committee member
Alex Waterworth Committee member
Joshua Mouat Committee member
Nishil Shah
Snowcraft Course Logistics

 

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