McKerrow Range traverse, Mt Shrimpton to Boundary Creek – Awesome!

Four of us in Harvey’s chopper flew up onto the McKerrow range up behind Makarora for a long exhilarating ski tour. A bit of organisation was required; firstly I drove the Jeep up the farm track at Boundary Creek to close to the snow line, then mtn biked back down, locked the bike at the campground and jumped in the other car with the others for the drive to Makarora. We planned on the heli drop off on top of Mt Shrimpton, but because visibility was limited at the start we landed in the saddle between Mts Shrimpton and Pt 1960. In hindsight we should have been dropped on top of Pt 1960….

we spent the next 4 hours or so with a lovely traverse of the range, some steepish descents and smooth up hill skinning, and final short walk down to the Jeep at Boundary Creek. There are spectacular views of Lake Wanaka. Suggest bring ski crampons at a minimum as in certain conditions it would be considered more ski mountaineering than ski randonee.

We flew with Harvey Hutton of Backcountry Helicopters 443 8351. Helicopter takes 4 and costs around 400$ total (100$ each) The 4wd farm track goes from state highway 6, the entrance is directly opposite the Boundary Creek campground and ascends to 900m. High clearance and 4wd low ratio req’d (or a Toyota Carona)

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Postscript: The following video is of an overnight trip based from the southern end of the Range (Peak 1569) that Jo and Alan did later in the season. An in and out trip rather than a traverse..