Submitted by Ben
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Back country - remote
Native bushRiversideLakesideOpen ridges/tops
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You start heading up the Pinchgut track where Robert Ridge is soon reached and the amazing views which you will get for the next few hours of Nelson lakes and across to Kahaurangi. Robert Ridge is a marked track which undulates slowly upward for about 11km, getting rougher and more technical as you head towards Angelus hut.
From Angelus hut to Hopeless there are no more track markers. Head in a south west direction crossing Lake Angelus outlet creek. Soon after this you will see Hinapouri Tarns which can be sidled on either side. Once past the tarns head up to the obvious saddle on the ridge line. Once on the saddle it is definitely worth doing the short side trip up to the top of Angelus peak - this is quite a steep scree scramble to the top. Once back at the saddle head south into Hopeless Creek, the terrain here is quite rough with a few km of shattered rock of varying size.
Once down in Hopeless Creek you will reach 2 larger tarns - after passing the second tarn sidle across on to the true right of the valley where you stay high to get around a large waterfall. Stay high until you get on to a large scree slope which provides easy access back down to the creek. Once at the creek it is only about 1km to the hut. From Hopeless hut it is an easy descent through native beach forest to the Traverse Valley. Head down the valley to Coldwater hut, then around the western side of the lake. Towards the end of the lake the track starts climbing back up away from the lake - take the Paddy's track at the junction which climbs steeply then heads across to the road and the car park.
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Features of interest
Amazing views across Nelson Lakes, Richmond Ranges and Kahurangi.
Make Up of Run
Untracked / Route only: 20%
Technical Single Track: 25%
Moderate Single Track: 20%
Easy Single Track: 35%
Start form the Mt Robert carpark
Take the sign for Mt Robert / West Bay. Head past the lake cross the bridge and keep heading up to the top car park.
It is easy to find your way when there is good visibility, but the weather can change quickly and if the cloud rolls in being able to use a map and compass will get you home.
Waterproof leggings, Thermal leggings, Lightweight fleece top, Short-sleeved thermal top, Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Personal Locator Beacon (PLB), Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Survival bag, Cellphone, Compass, Map, Headtorch and spare batteries, Crampons / microspikes (for winter conditions).
I drink the water out of the smaller rivers and streams and have not had any issues, the choice is up to you ! !
Definitely not a winter running trip, hopeless creak would become very difficult to navigate with only a small amount of snow on the ground
Lots of loose rock
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See other runs nearby:
Rotoiti Loop The Lake
Mt Robert Loop
Angelus Mega Loop
Blue Lake - clearest water on earth
Parachute Rocks and St Arnaud Ridge
St Arnaud Discovery Loops
Speargrass - Robert Ridge
Angelus East Ridge Circuit
St Arnaud Sampler
Ultra Tour du Nelson Lakes
Robert Ridge to Angelus Hut
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