The Transcendent Hoody in action

After the heavy snows of the last week in June left a lingering sense in the air. I needed to take advantage of these conditions and get back into the mountains ASAP for an epic adventure.

The plan was worked on throughout the week with Dave (currently striving for twelve 2000m+ mountains in the year) and we had a summit, a route and a camp location for an overnight epic adventure.

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The end of the road...

So as New Zealand gets some of the worst snowfalls in the last two decades, the 52 Peaks Challenge must go on. With the rain pouring down in Christchurch, we set out early this weekend to try and conquer the snow and another summit.
With cross-country skis (for some) in tow and snow chains packed in the 4×4 our attempt was going to be on Mt Somers (1687m) in central Canterbury.

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Mt Sinclair sits a long way back (part of the Sinclair Range) next to the Two Thumbs ski range, north of Lake Tekapo and is a chain of peaks over 2000m in altitude. Mt Sinclair itself, named after Dr Sinclair, who, back in 1861 was Colonial Secretary to the New Zealand Government. He, along with his friend – Julius von Haast, principle geologist (and also famous for the Haast Pass being named after him) in the upper Rangitata, were surveying the river before his horse bolted and he reached an untimely demise. Still, his legacy lives on in the┬ámountain┬árange, and what a stunning range it is.

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View back down the ridge to Lake Lyndon & Castle Hill Peak

Winter is coming. That’s what all ‘Game of Thrones’ fans are shouting at the moment – but it’s also true of New Zealand’s seasons for the 52 Peaks Challenge. This weekend we had the first dump of snow in the Torlesse and Craigieburn Ranges, not a lot but enough to sugar coat the peaks above 1200m, two of which I was climbing.

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