HiTAC December 2019

President’s Desk

Kia ora folks,

Last one of these for the year or me. Boom 2019, you’re over. That’s right it’s December already. November disappeared in a bang, literally, and all that’s left is a shimmering haze, can’t tell if it’s Aussie bush fires or electrical smoke from Tahurangi, but we’re cooking now, summer is here.

To recap… November was a bit crap in so many ways. Slush summit was cancelled due to bad weather on that weekend (who’d have thought?) , however pleased to see a few of the snow crafties getting out there under their own steam and making the most of the spring conditions. Better hurry those that still have ambitions to get a snow summit this year, it won’t last much longer. Better luck had by the overnight crew that visited Kapuni Lodge, and managed a morning mission up Fanthams, also looks like the weather is going to hold for the trip to the Okahu Gorge this weekend. Fingers crossed.

By far the most crap news was having the lodge hammered by our second lightening strike of the year. The lodge took a number of strikes, that caused what can only be described as a cluster#&%@ of electrical damage. Strikes caused multiple faults in our main feed from the translator (which was also hit); damage to bunch of electrical guff that I don’t understand in the big white magic box by the door ; pretty much all the wireless gear and cables to the web cameras but not the cameras themselves; and more besides but I kinda glazed over when Pete and Greg were discussing it… Anyway, replacement for damage is under way, but it will be expensive, hope we sell lots of tickets for the open climb!

However, the power is back on. Take a bow Pete Lethbridge, Greg Banks, Dave Clough, Charlie and the rest of the crew who got up there worked it all out, took it on themselves to fix the problems, and got us up and running again. That lodge functions primarily on the institutional knowledge of a bunch of dedicated people, often fairly grumpy, but always there when it hits the fan. Thanks. I owe you a beer.

Which, by the way, they , and you dear reader, can claim at club night this month, the annual Presidents shout and the photo competition. Change of venue this year, we will be having the event at the function room at Decanta Bar, (opposite Macpac) 7.30 pm, first beer on me, meals available. Pick up some photographic tips from our judge Chris Hill.

Check the HiTac for other trips coming up this month, but following my fairly miserable moan about the state of access to North Island crags last month’s, TAC have decided to make the most of one of the best we’ve got, while we’ve got it, and we’re going back to Kawakawa Bay on the 14th and 15th of December. Dump your gear at the boat at Kinloch and bike in to the crags, camp overnight and climb all weekend on some of the best sport and trad routes in the North Island. Contact me or Ange for details, don’t miss out, K Bay is magic.

Finally, had the honour of belaying Fletch Miles on his first lead of Humphries Nose last weekend (which was way more fun than digging up fried cables). I’m not usually a very generous belayer but watching Fletch send one of his long time goals was one of highlights of the climbing year so far, and a timely reminder of what being in the Taranaki Alpine club is all about.

Merry Christmas all

Ivan Bruce
El Presidente!

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