Relief from the Quakes (Part Two) – Mt Somers(1688m)

“A Mish a Day” #184 Mt Somers(1688m) – Part Two. Hakatere Conservation Area. 16.6.2011. Watching the world go by at a comfortable hiking speed has always been my cup of tea. Slowly working out the route and taking the mission step by step is both relaxing and rewarding. However some prefer to see the world at a faster pace, and will choose running a track over walking it. Being someone who is accident prone at times means I stick to ‘slow and steady’ over ‘fast and you better be ready’. Absolutely nothing against those who like to run, like I said it’s just not my cup of tea…

As my fellow adventurers zoomed their way up the side of Mt Somers(1688m) I followed on at a far more sedate speed. After turning off the track around the base of the mountain I began the climb on the summit track. Although the track isn’t all that difficult, it still has a lot of going up involved and this certainly gets your legs working and your heart pumping. A scramble up through the red rock bluffs of the south east spur got me onto the large, open east ridge which eventually arrives at the summit of Mt Somers(1688m). With my goal in sight (the summit trig) I took the final steps to the top.

Looking North Towards Mt Hutt(2081m)

I had the large summit plateau to myself, as there was no sign of my new speedy companions. Having a 360 degree view was epic, and being the only person to see it is something that can only be achieved in a country with a small population like New Zealand. To the south I could see a large peak standing far taller than all others, and I had to think for a few seconds… then I realised I was looking at the mighty Aoraki / Mt Cook(3724m), standing far above all of the other mountains of Aotearoa. With the wind starting to build and the sky darkening I began my journey back down the east ridge to the safety of my car. Along the way I soaked in the awesome view over the Canterbury Plains to Christchurch, and a hazy Bank Peninsula. The whole day had gone by without a single thought about the quakes, and to me this was success even before finishing. For such an epic hiking trail I was surprised to not see anyone else apart from the runners all day. Oh well, more Mount Somers(1688m) for us I guess! The journey back down the mountain went by without any issues, and I got back to the car park to find the same two vehicles still the only ones in the car park. I had just unlocked my car when two very tired looking fellas crawled their way into the car park from the Sharplin Falls / Pinnacles Hut Track. After a quick chat they both admitted they might have pushed their limits a bit, but were stoked with their epic adventure run. I was happy with my outing and was far less shattered than my energetic fellow adventurers. Either way we had both achieved our goals of a mish, and together we both drove away less stressed about the shaky world we were having to deal with…

New Zealand. What a place to explore!

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