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|Adams Range Traverse from Mt Adams to Mt Kensington||
An alpine range traverse. Travel from 2194m through towards 2042m is easy. Beyond, the first traverse party reported interesting rock climbing in places, but continued to make steady progress along the range, reaching Barlow Saddle the same day. Rock was variable, with them cutting steps in loose steep schist rock at one point. Much of the range from pt 1528m to pt 1605m is tussock and short grass, and there are some wonderful campsites with tarns between pt 1576m and pt 1557m. A short section between pt 1557m and pt 1605m is exposed and loose in places, with small tussocky pinnacles. Beyond, the ridge broadens into gravel leading to the West Ridge of Kensington, where snow gullies lead through to the summit if required. Howitt and Gill fixed climbed a few hundred metres of the razorback rock ridge dividing the Poeroa from the Barlow before a 60m 'vertical razorback' forced them down onto the snow route up. Gordon Howitt and Alan Gill from the West Coast Alpine Club, 29th and 30th December, 1963, as part of a six day trip that climbed Mt Adams, traversed the Adams Range to Mt Kensington then descended most of the north ridge of Kensington before being forced to abseil off it into the head of the Poerua Valley. Their packs weighed about 12kg, they took two ropes, one 40m the other lighter and about 12m, a piton for emergencies, but no tent or primus.
Gordon Howitt and Alan Gill from the West Coast Alpine Club, 29th and 30th December, 1963
The Adams Range runs from Mt Adams through to the north western corner of the Gardens at Mt Kensington. The only track on the whole range is that leading from Little Man Creek up to the scrubline on Mt Adams. Mt Adams itself was first ascended as part of the West Coast topographical survey in the 1880s by W Wilson and offers a spectacular view over much of the Adams Wilderness. Charles W Adams was also a surveyor in the 1880s, but working in the upper Rakaia. A massive rockfall off the Adams Range in the 1990s spewed debris down into the Poerua Gorge below the forks, covering farmland below.