Sealy Range

(29 routes)


-43.749400000000, 170.066100000000
H36 738 134
BY15 638 518
Reference Title Grade Length Quality Bolts Gone Natural pro Link to edit content
THE SEALY RANGE Ski Touring. 4
Grade 4/5 Multi-day, hut-based. This range is South West of the Mount Cook Village, and has spectacular views across to Mount Cook and Mount Sefton, and across the Tasman Valley. Access is often by helicopter from Glentanner to Barron Saddle Hut, or by ski plane that lands at the head of the glacier. Barron Saddle Hut (DoC, $20 per night) is comfortable for up to 8 people but more have been known to squeeze in! A tent or snow cave could be established in the vicinity, although this area is exposed to very high winds. The hut that was the predecessor to the present hut was blown off the ridge in a particularly severe storm, killing its three occupants. There are short slopes around the hut that can be skied. Below the hut sits the Mueller Glacier. A direct descent below the hut would take you over bluffs, but a 1 km traverse to the left (west) leads down onto the upper Mueller Glacier. In winter the Welchman and Bennie Glaciers on the true left of the Mueller could be skied. In most winters and into spring the Mueller Glacier can be skied down valley on its right hand side until under Mt Olivier, and a climbing traverse then taken up to the new Mueller Hut (DoC, 12 bunks, $20 per night) at 1780m. From Mueller Hut it’s a 2½-3 hour walk down a steep track past the Sealey Tarns to the road end. With a decent snow cover, half or more of this walk can be skied, e.g. as far as the Sealey Tarns. This is the best exit route from Barron Saddle Hut, and can be done in a day comfortably. Mueller Hut itself is a good base for a weekend or long weekend in late spring. The ski tour to the upper Annette Plateau and Metelille Glacier and return is straightforward, and gives spectacular views and good turns.
The upper level traverse is more interesting and challenging. This involves traversing around the toe of the ridge that runs north off Mt Darby (grid ref 695125) at 2000 metres altitude. Take care here, there is possibility of rock and icefall from above, there are bluffs below you and depending on conditions skis may need to be removed for a short section of rock scrambling. Then skin up the broad Sladden Glacier to Sladden Saddle at 2344 metres – 2 to 2 ½ hours from the hut. Sladden Saddle gets quite heavily loaded with snow after southerly storms, so beware in these conditions. Also the slope down from the saddle onto the Metelille Glacier is north-facing and therefore gets the direct sun, which is worth remembering if you’re arriving in the middle of the day in spring/summer. Once down on the Metelille, hold your height, skiing northwards on the west side of the ridge under the Annette Plateau, eventually reaching a point west or NW of Kitchener. Then it’s skins on for the final 150 vertical metres or so up to Mueller Hut. Note that the Annette Plateau itself is a great ski run, and is itself a worthy skiing destination from Mueller Hut. Mount Sealey (2627m) is a climb of low technical difficulty, conveniently accessed by ski from Mueller, via the upper Metelille. See the Aoraki Mount Cook Guide for climbing route details.


Type Title Link to edit content
Mountain Mt Ollivier (0 routes)
Mountain Mt Kitchener (2 routes)
Mountain Mt Annette (3 routes)
Mountain Mt Sealy Low Pk (1 route)
Mountain Mt Sealy (7 routes)
Pass Sladden Saddle (0 routes)
Mountain Mt Massey (1 route)
Mountain Mt Jean (2 routes)
Mountain Mt Jeanette (2 routes)
Mountain Mt Marie (2 routes)
Mountain Mt Darby (5 routes)
Pass Barron Saddle (2 routes)