The General v5a3VI****

Highest drop 45m

Public access

8-16hrs (depending on how high you start)

One of the most committing, sustained and narrow canyons in NZ.  44 pitches, super solid dark schist, deep, narrow, sustained. Don’t forget the “Slot of Doom”, with a handline to access 3 pitches (one including a deviation) on a 45m drop. If it had jumps it might be a 5 star canyon…

Download the top for The General

Read the account of the early exploration of The General at Canyon Magazine.

The video below starts at the ‘intermedio’ access and features the “Slot of Doom”

Images below by Dan Clearwater and Toine Houtenbos.

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Waterfall Creek

The canyon was called Waterfall Creek, and terminated directly opposite Maruia hot springs. This was the appeal of the canyon, because if it was a good one you could do a winter mission and then jump into the hot pools at the end! Anyway, it was a three hour slog up the true left side of the creek before we dropped in at the bushline, and after all that there were only two 10m waterfalls in the whole thing! The rock there is a bit crumbly so I think that the water has broken it up rather than creating features.

By Bodhi Bettjeman, Dan Penny, Neill Molloy, Noemie Castaing and Amme Hiser.

 

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The Lion King v4a3IV*

Highest drop 40m

Public access

6.5-8.5hrs

A classic case of a great wee canyon with a sub-optimal walk in. An all round adventure that begins with a river crossing then a boulder hop/bash, followed by dense young Beech saplings. Man, I’m really selling it! The canyon is open for the majority of it’s length and has scenic pitches and cool features throughout and if it was closer to the valley floor would be a favourite. As it is… worth the walk.

Topo by Tom Johns

Download the CanyonTopo for The Lion King 

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Wilberhorse Canyon v5a3IV***

Highest drop 110m  (yes, you need 2x 110m ropes!)

Private access, permission required (see topo)

8.5-12.5hrs

A big alpine canyon, 14 pitches, including a one of 110m. Sustained and exposed, a serious undertaking!

Download the Wilberhorse CanyonTopo

First descent by Tom Johns, Ashley Stewart, Danny Kingan, Sarah Hamilton, Rocky Smith, March 2018

Photos from Tom Johns

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Kaiate Falls Canyon v4a3I*

Highest drop 16m  (2x20m ropes)

Public access

1-2hrs

This is a short sharp canyon that would be great on a hot summers day as there are some deep pools. The area could get quite busy in summer due to the scenic nature of the falls and the adjacent walking tracks so discretion is advised. It may be better done on a weekday or in an evening. There is a great pool at the bottom that is an excellent place to practice jumps

Topo by Shanan Fraser. Download the topo for Kaiate Falls

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