Permission Granted (Part Four) – Northern Otago Hills

“On a Mish” #359 Permission Granted (Part Four). Oteake Conservation Area to Naseby. Northern Otago. 26.11.2022. Many of New Zealand’s biggest farms are located in some of New Zealand’s most pristine country. Massive areas have been plotted out with fence-lines that make you feel tired when you think about the absurd amount of effort required to fence such mountainous land. The station owners / workers have claimed their land, and continue to put in the mahi (work) to maintain it. My cousin Adam and I have been lucky to be able to venture into some of these remote farms, and because it is private land we have always sought permission before entering…

After a couple of days in Otematata we were bounced back into reality by seeing the many people out enjoying the public playground of Oteake Conservation Area. This made us really appreciate the fact that we sought permission and it was granted. Nothing against the area, but once you have had a place to yourselves it takes a while to get used to the presence of other humans.

After getting to a full Tailings Hut we needed somewhere else to go, and one of the hut’s occupants suggested we head up the hill to Brown Hut. Adam questioned the fella about the state of the hut, as during another trip to the area he thought he had been there. But we were assured that the hut was good and we would be happy staying there. Adam wasn’t convinced he was telling the truth, and after a challenging climb we arrived at Brown Hut to find the opposite of what we were after!

At Brown Hut the rain began to pour so we all decided that Naseby Camping Ground would be our home for that night, and the next morning we would take on the challenge of Omarama Saddle.

To get out of the mountains we still had some ground to cover and this was some of the roughest track we had been on during the entire trip. The wear and tear from many vehicles was obvious, and in places without future maintenance the tracks would be near impossible to drive on. After a quick visit to the white sands of the Buster Cuttings (gold mine) we dropped down off the Ida Range and made our way into the village of Naseby.

With the heaviest rain we had seen all trip falling we rocked up to the camping ground and gladly checked into a little cabin for the night.

After a fantastic feed at the historic Naseby Hotel we headed back for some much needed sleep, knowing the next day would be another outstanding 4wd adventure

Rain Falling on the Ida Range

New Zealand. What a place to explore!

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