Info on Gertrude Saddle

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Info on Gertrude Saddle

Postby Jancke1234 » Tue 22 Nov, 2016 4:15 pm

Hi all.....first post here. Husband and I are late 50’s and will be in NZ next Feb. I have read a lot recently about Gertrude saddle
and as much as I love to do this walk I am not sure we are up to it. I think I have been put off by all the ‘cautions’ not to mention pics of what look like almost vertical
rock faces with chains. If we did do it I would look into using a guide rather than trying to negotiate it ourselves. However, I’m wondering if it’s worthwhile just walking in the valley section, if we feel the hike to the saddle would be too much. Or would Lake Marian perhaps be a better option scenery wise. I would very much appreciate any opinions on this. Thanks...Jan
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Re: Info on Gertrude Saddle

Postby wayno » Wed 23 Nov, 2016 6:25 pm

the valleys are still worth a visit, huts get over full over the holiday season, so take a tent if you're going then... and watch for heavy rain and go somewhere thats bridged, there is a jetboat to take you up the wilkin....
any steep pass covered in tussock can be treacherously slippery in the wet
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Re: Info on Gertrude Saddle

Postby Jancke1234 » Thu 24 Nov, 2016 8:35 am

Hi Wayno.....thank you for your reply, although I am a bit confused by it. The valley I was referring to is the one you walk through before ascending to the Gertrude saddle (day walk) I googled your reference to Wilkin river and you seem to be referring to the multi day Gillespie pass walk?..which I’d actually never heard of (sounds fantastic though) We have just several hours to spend walking, also doing Key Summit. Not sure if we have the skills/stamina to reach Gertrude saddle so wondering if was worthwhile even going out there at all. Do you have any thoughts on Lake Marian? Thanks again, Jan
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Re: Info on Gertrude Saddle

Postby wayno » Thu 24 Nov, 2016 8:46 am

either valley is good.
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Re: Info on Gertrude Saddle

Postby eggs » Thu 24 Nov, 2016 10:58 am

I have not been to Gertrude Saddle - though I had hoped to go up that way.
The valley opens up from the road to Milford and looks pleasant. But being so close, unless you go up into the harder bits [the Saddle itself and Black Lake] there is probably little that you cannot see from the road.

The Lake Marian track past the falls was out when we were there. No mention of that on the DOCS site now, so I presume it is repaired.
I do believe it is a steep climb past the falls.

Some really good short walks in that area include Humbolt Falls and the loop walk at Lake Gunn.
It was raining when we were at Lake Gunn, but I did not see more luxuriant carpets of mossy forest any where else in NZ.
If you are doing Key Summit - then continuing down to Lake Howden is worthwhile.
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Re: Info on Gertrude Saddle

Postby wayno » Thu 24 Nov, 2016 11:04 am

ignore my previous comments, i'm thinking of somewhere different, so many saddles..
gertrude saddle it a dry weather only route, the rock is slippery when its wet, its a steep walk, straight forward if you're used to that sort of things, but not if you dont have a head for heights.
lake marian is easy, key summit is easy. threes short walks off the roads there all over the place that are marked..
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Re: Info on Gertrude Saddle

Postby Jancke1234 » Sun 27 Nov, 2016 8:23 am

Thanks Eggs...I will put Lake Gunn on our list, sounds lovely. Might stop at Gertrude saddle and see what we think when we see it up close and personal and then make the decision, weather permitting of course

Thanks for your imput Wayno
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