D'Urville Island, Marlborough Sounds - June 2018
We spent Queens Birthday weekend on D'Urville Island with the Waimea Tramping Club. A bit of a drive up to French Pass to get the car ferry over to the island but well worth it with excellent views from the road traversing a ridge into Current Basin and Admiralty Bay. (Note: need good clearance under vehicle to permit access on/off ferry) Jeff one of the club members who has bee hives on the island organised accomodation at the Community hall in the centre of the island. This was perfect for our group of 21, which had good facilities, fabulous views and we even saw the lights of the north island at night. Saturday afternoon we did a short walk up to the top of Attempt Hill, the highest point on the island at 729m. Sunday had most of us tramping down to Catherine Cove where we had coffees at the Wilderness Resort before climbing back up a old 4 wheel drive track before joining up with the Ridgeline track which took us back over Spot Height 510 to the road. We did a short walk on Monday morning exploring the old Maori quarry sites around Mt Ears. This forms part of the mineral belt that extends south to Dunn Mountain, Nelson. We found plenty of evidence of serpentine being worked in a number of places close to the track.
The following links provide additional information about the island: NZ Geographic, Maori occupation layers at D'Urville Island, New Zealand