South West Ridge (Guides Route)

Type: 
Alpine
Description: 
The ridge was used as a training climb for guides in the early 1900s.There are several variations on the lower part of this ridge. From the true left end of the second swingbridge of the Hooker Valley track, turn off onto a faint ground trail on the true left of the valley and begin climbing anywhere from near the second swingbridge as far as the first really large scree slope on the East Side of the Hooker Valley, near the third swingbridge. (The second scree up valley from the second swingbridge seems to lead to the most pleasing line.) Some great pockets of solid red rock can be found, but the main challenge is avoiding the scrub. Higher up, the overall angle eases, but the rock quality deteriorates. The variations converge just below a small cheval around 1680m. The upper ridge merges into a series of basins and spurs south of the summit. Descend via the South Ridge.
Pitch(es): 
#EwbankAlpine (Technical)Alpine (Commitment)Alpine (Mt Cook)AidWater IceMixedBoulder (Hueco)LengthBoltsTrad
12+II0mYes
 

At least two of the ribs leading onto Wakefield from just above the second swingbridge were used as training climbs for guides in the 1930s. From the second swingbridge climb a very enjoyable ridge to the summit. The rock is good and the panoramic views including Sefton, the Main Divide and Aoraki are superb.

Grade: 
II 2+
Quality: 
1.02
Gone: 
0
Length: 
0m
Bolts: 
0
Natural pro: 
1
Ascent: 
First ascent unknown.
Route Image: 
UUID: 
ca147cd0-6b2a-4365-a9c9-93e5e67b9261

Comments

Don't try follow any of the spurs directly above the second bridge along the hooker track; you'll have an enjoyable push through vertical scrub, followed by chossy rock, all of which culminates in a exposed cheval section followed by steep section on horrendous chossy rock. Definitely not the "very enjoyable ridge to the summit". To reach guide route follow the old route on the true left of the river until making the obvious ridge line between the labelled 900 contour line and the 1900 contour line as marked on topo maps.