Back to Borland – Part Two

“On a Mish” #272 Back to Borland – Part Two. Fiordland National Park. 20.4.2021. Twenty metres of very easy walking had taken me from my car to an outstanding riverside campsite. The nor’west storm was still pummeling the Borland area, but I was sheltered (mostly) from the wind, and the beech trees were doing their best to keep me out of the rain. Every now and then I would leave my little sheltered oasis and check on the weather in the rest of the valley. Each time I would go from relatively calm conditions within my campsite, to blustery rain-soaked wind in the rest of the valley. The spot couldn’t have been any better, and by the look of it no one had been there for a very long time...

The afternoon quickly rolled into the evening, and I spent the time collecting wood for a fire. Although I was sheltered from the wind, my tent was still feeling the effects of the precipitation, and it was a good test for my trusty old Marmot Tungsten. The tent lived up to its name and was solid as a rock in its temporary location, with no rain penetrating the tent’s outer layer.

I went for a walk just before darkness made itself at home for the night. I could see sheets of rain making their way down the valley, mixed with small patches of blue sky. It was extremely comforting knowing that if the weather got too crazy I could retreat to my car, a rare plan B in an area as remote as this. I enjoyed my dinner sitting in my dining room / car, as the rain returned and the last of the day’s light disappeared. The night’s entertainment was keeping my fire happy and well stocked with sticks and twigs. While staying dry under the cover of the beech forest, and nice and warm beside my fire, I started to think about a morning mish.

My plan was to get up well before early-ish, and hike up to the Mount Burns Tarns. I retreated to the warmth and comfort of my sleeping bag, then fell asleep to the gentle trickle of the Borland Burn and the pitter patter of rain on the roof of the tent. I woke just before my 5.45am alarm, and outside was quiet and calm. It was mission time.

But first I had to drive a few kilometres up the road to Borland Saddle(990m). In total darkness, with stars twinkling above I rolled into the car park at the base of the Mount Burns Tarns track

Borland Base Camp

New Zealand. What a place to explore!

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