Another day in paradise! Our group of eight had a luxurious day on the slopes of Mount Maquilla.
In June, Jes and Matthew found this easy route up Mount Maquilla. I described the route as minimal bush, and I’ll stand by that statement. The majority of the bush is found on the overgrowing road, but even that has been trimmed over the years. It wasn’t much more than a minor annoyance.
In order to make the most of our time on the mountain, I organized a trip to the north island that included visits to two mountains. Both mountains are worth visiting individually, but by combining them into one day trip, we were able to save some money on fuel.
Friday evening Jes and Matthew camped out at the Forest Rec site at Klaklakama Lake. Predawn came even worse than it sounded after a poor night’s sleep (I think too much coffee). It was a short drive to the end of Chuckham Road, and we were hiking to Maquilla by 6:15 am. We parked to 800m, so there was a little more than 1000m to the summit.
We ventured off the road and up a ridge to an adjoining route that gains the peak via the south ridge. We moved quickly through the light to moderate bush. There was no boot track to guide us but we had great beta provided by another club member – thanks, Eyrn!
Jack’s Peak – 15.7km, 1345m elevation gain, 7.5 hours.
On May 13th, We started around 7:30am at the trailhead, a yellow gate at 300m elevation. From there it was a pretty steady climb up the service road. There was plenty of bear scat and we eventually saw one run across the road.
What a perfect day on the trail! When I scheduled the trip, I had high hopes for great weather. But, as the day approached, the forecast took a turn for the worst. We all expected a cold, drizzly day, with wet brush and slippery rock. We were in for a treat!
Seven club members met at Alyard Farm for a car shuffle that allowed some participants the luxury of doing the coast trail without the commitment of following the inland route back to the cars. We started our hike shortly after 8 AM. In the dim light of the morning and in the tall trees, we had no idea what would await us when we got to the coast.
We called this hike after the name of the feature and what we hoped we would find: an endless plateau of fun! Well, maps lie. I suppose it’s not that they lie as much as contour lines can hide a lot of terrain.
We had a bleak forecast but I hoped the day would still be enjoyable. With the turnover to the new year, I’ve sought trips with a “good” amount of elevation and distance to get in shape for the spring and summer. I scoffed at the forecast – snow?!