The next morning I had a nice breakfast of scrambled eggs on toast at a cafe while waiting for my car to thaw. Then I headed up to Black’s Point. It’s a few km down the road to Christchurch. There is a walk that goes around some old mining sites. Normally it takes about 5 hours, but it took me 6, because there were so many trees down over the track. I had also decided a normal daybag would be too easy, so I did it with my FSMO pack on. 25kgs of integrity!
I headed up the track to the left. It goes steeply up the hill. The track has been affected by the recent snow and a lot of trees had fallen.
Just around the corner is the Ajax shaft.
A bit further along there is a horse whim. This was a method of using horses to pull a cable to shift trolleys. However being tethered up seems nothing like a whim!
The next section of track was a lot rougher, with many trees across it. It leads to the remains of the stamper battery.
I couldn’t see much because it was all covered in snow.I headed back up the track. from this intersection onward thew track is much wider and suitable for mountain biking. The sun did not come in to the valley so it was still thick with snow.
The Chandlers opencast mine site is here, but covered in snow there is nothing to see. Similar story at Cement town.
The last section of track was quite mad. The sign points up the hill, but DON’T take it, as it’s all covered with fallen trees. Take the bridge. The rest of the track is wide enough to drive a 4WD down, but was FULL of fallen trees.
It was a complete faff. If anyone is going up there with a chainsaw you will have plenty of work. Otherwise don’t THINK about taking a bike.
At the bottom of the track there is an option of going to the Golden Fleece battery. It is run by the museum, so you can’t see it unless the museum is open or you have an appointment.After that I zipped up to Westport. Much better to do it in the evening, when the frost has thawed out.