Kuranui senior students had a taste of tramping one of the Tararua’s highest peaks during a recent two-day expedition across the Mount Holdsworth-Jumbo Circuit.
Conquering the mountain is something that’s integral to Kiwi DNA, and if there’s one thing that makes the Wairarapa a great place to study, it’s the proximity to the great outdoors and in a region that offers a wealth of mountains, rivers and sea to explore.
The tramp is part of a 17-week outdoor education programme at the college and also includes activities such as camping, low and high ropes, and white water rafting.
The course is offered at both NCEA Level 2 and 3 and is designed to give students the skills for being active outdoors, as well as helping them develop a good appreciation on how to stay safe.
“Tramping aims is to get students to demonstrate tramping and navigation skills, as well as bringing with them the appropriate food and gear so they can stay overnight in the bush,” explains Kuranui P.E and Health Team Leader, Jane Russell.
Day one for the 23 Level 3 students meant a walk up to Powell Hut for the night. Day two began with an early start and involved an ascent of the 1450m high summit of Mount Holdsworth, a steady walk across the tops through clouds and then the steep descent that’s Rain Gauge Spur to Atiwhakatu Hut and then back to the Holdsworth road end along the scenic Atiwhakatu Valley.
Previously 16 Level 2 students tramped via Rocky Lookout up to Powell Hut for an overnight tramp.
“It was very wet and cold but the students’ enthusiasm and never-give-up attitude got them through.
“In the morning, they decided to tramp to the summit to conquer the mountain and were rewarded with enough snow to make a couple of snowballs and snowmen,” added Russell.
As well as appreciating the Wairarapa outdoors, students also had the opportunity to gain credits at NCEA.