Access to peaks of the Reischek watershed is usually via Jagged Stream, the Assault Glacier and
Reischek Col. If travelling up Reischek Stream, the confluence with the Rakaia River is reached after
5–6 hours’ walk from Lake Stream. The lower and upper sections of Reischek Stream provide straightforward
travel. The middle section is gorged but passable, with several river crossings and a short
scramble along the bank on the true left, until the final waterfall at the head of the gorge is reached.
Just downstream of the waterfall, climb up a gully on the true right, make a short traverse through
snow-grass and minor scrub, and descend the next scree gully back to the riverbed (a higher traverse
avoids the scrub). Continue upstream to two small lakes separated by a moraine wall (not shown on
map sheets J35 and BW18). There is good camping by the first lake. To reach the main body of the
Reischek Glacier, climb the moraine wall, drop down to the second, smaller lake, and follow moraine
up the valley. Once at the terminal face the glacier generally provides good travel, but the central section
in particular can get badly cut up in late season. Rock bluffs on the true right also provide access
to the upper glacier via a scramble on good rock and scree.
Lawrence Col is not recommended for high-level crossings as steep icefalls lead to the floor of
the Lawrence Valley. Gusty Col, between The Spires, has precipitous slopes above the Rakaia Valley.
Reischek Col provides generally good access between Jagged Stream and the upper Rakaia Valley.
in association with the Canterbury Mountaneering Club