Movies at Mistake Flat (Part Four) – The Havelock Valley

“On a Mish” #370 Movies at Mistake Flat (Part Four). Mistake Flat Hut. Hakatere Conservation Park. 26.3.2023. When you are out in the wilderness exploring you sometimes need to push aside feelings of nervousness. You might be at a hut and it begins to rain. If it rains the rivers might come up and you might get trapped. You can worry about it but that wouldn’t magically make your situation any different, so the best thing to do is just enjoy where you are and leave your worries for another day. We had just had an epic day crossing country that most only cover on foot and now we were ready to start celebrating the fact that we had achieved part one of our goal. We were at Mistake Flat Hut…

You would think that sitting in a car wouldn’t be that tiring, but if you are in a car creeping up the Havelock Valley then you will be buggered by the end of the day.

The hut was in excellent condition and must have had some recent love. The six bunks were easily enough for the entire team, and once we got the fire going the place warmed up. In fact the fireplace works so well that for most of the weekend we had to have the windows open!

The evening was very relaxed and, after getting a weather forecast on Adam’s Inreach GPS, we figured we would probably be the only ones in the hut for the next couple of days. Rain was predicted in the area and the valley is tough enough in the dry so we were confident we wouldn’t see another soul until we began the trek back to reality.

Early-ish the next morning Ernie and I were up watching an excellent sunrise that told us it was going to rain. At first it was clear with the odd star above, but then the clouds started to roll as the valley began to light up. A yellow glow became a reddish pink behind the appropriately named Cloud Peak Range and for a few seconds the place had a magical feeling about it. These are the moments I think about the most when I am not out in the mountains. Not long after the sun came up the rain began to fall down.

The two trucks went out on their own mini missions for photos and to be awed by the massive scale of everything in the area. The mountains are so big that as soon as you head away from the hut it shrinks to only a dot with an incredible backdrop.

As the day drifted on the drizzle drifted in, and with it the views disappeared. This was no issue as we were all feeling the day before and we were keen for our rest day to live up to its name.

Katie had brought her Ipad and before we knew it we were watching Movies at Mistake Flats while the rain fell outside. As the weather deteriorated we were forced to open the door again because the hut’s thermal efficiency was so good. I can’t say I ever thought I would be watching movies in such a remote location!

After the multiple movies we cooked up another feast and then retreated to our sleeping bags, although the hut was so hot we could have easily survived without them!

Early-ish the next day Adam and I were up before dawn checking out the superb stars and testing out his incredibly bright Stedi lights in a location they were designed for. The test was a success and the light shone very bright amongst the dark early morning mountains.

Next it was time for our final sunrise, which didn’t disappoint.

As the sun began to rise on our final day in the mountains we were all beginning to think the same thing, how do we get outta here without breaking anything?

Early-ish in the Havelock Valley

New Zealand. What a place to explore!

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