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Montagu, Mount

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A choice of routes can be taken here. It is best done in the wellington falls circuit which also encompasses cathedral rock.

   a) Thark ridge. Start from the Big Bend carpark on the road to the Wellington Summit. This is the large one next to the last snowgate. Pick up rough pads from the top of the carpark. If this is causing difficulties walk to the near boulder scree and follow its base towards the summit, picking up the track. The track is cairned and very muddy. Make sure to turn sharply right at the corner closer to the ridge. This is obvious because a large cairn marks it. In other words head up the ridge instead of straight. The cairned track soon turns into a very well marked, well made track as progress is made towards the bottom end. Follow this until you reach Montagu fire trail. Continue to pick up the unmarked track on the right. Wellington park maps show this and it is obvious when you are loocking for it (cairn). Follow this to the top. It is relatively easy to follow. 
   b) Betts Road. Follow route as for cathedral rock, then over the thumbs to meet the fire trail. 10 or so mins along here the cairned track is encountered on the left. There are two of these, probably best to follow the closer one as not to back track but both are very straight forward. 
   c) The falls. This route is hardest to pick up but arguably the most scenic. 
       1) Drive to Neika, then walk the repetitive 8km length of the pipeline track to meet the well signed track to the falls. Follow this, then once you reach the lookout sign continue straight instead. Traverse a small scree slope, neither rising nor falling to meet the top of the falls. Cross the Northwest bay river to pick up tags on the other side. Follow this track (moderately easy to follow) to meet the fire trail route described above. 
       2) Drive to Betts road. Get on the cathedral rock track, walk for about a half hour until tags are encountered on left. Follow these to meet the river, crossing the river in a diagonal up stream direction. Tags will once again be encountered, leading to a fire trail up the steep pipeline. Follow this, ignoring a left turn that appears to lead onto a flatish road. This will spit you out across from the falls track, meeting other routes. This is quicker than route 1, but harder and more scenic. 
   d) The circuit. This is the best walk in the park. Follow route C to the falls, then walking to the top of the fall. Pick up the obvious tags on the other side, following these to the fire trail. Traverse below Montagu, climbing to the summit if wanted, until you reach the thumbs track. This will appear obviously on the left of the fire trail. It is marked well by arrows on poles. Follow this to Cathedral rock, descending off the sharp little summit to pick up the fairly obvous track. Rock slabs show the way from the summit coming in this direction. Once down the rock track, turn left once at the junction, following the collection of obvious tracks and fire trails with no turn offs back to Betts Road. This is about 17km and well worth the effort from fit parties with some previous experience.

[category: track notes]

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