Browning Range and Whitehorn Ridge traverse

Type: 
Alpine
Pitch(es): 
#EwbankAlpine (Technical)Alpine (Commitment)Alpine (Mt Cook)AidWater IceMixedBoulder (Hueco)LengthBoltsTrad
10mNo
 

The Browning Range can be approached from Browning Pass via Hall Creek, heading up slopes a little
west of Mt Beals to the Main Divide. From the Main Divide towards Mt Lathrop, rock strata on
the range dip towards the west. A series of little ribs running down off the range has little bluff lines
on southern aspects. The climb from the south-east onto Mt Lathrop itself involves a steep scramble
on poor rock a few hundred metres north of Pt 1640 metres, but the descent to Lathrop Saddle is not
difficult.
From Lathrop Saddle, the range can be followed to a bluff at about J33 677081 / BV19 577 465.
Though climbable, with heavier packs this obstacle can be passed on the Styx side about 100 metres
down. As you might infer, Cairn Peak has a big cairn on it. There are often rock wrens around, but
they didn’t build it. The basins through here are very pleasant, and Tyndalls Knob can be bypassed in
them leading to Whitehorn Ridge.
Fabulous but open campsites exist on Whitehorn Ridge at about the 1500-metre contour with
tarns. Below the 1440-metre contour, the ridge drops on stable rock and tussock bluffs. These can be
bypassed via the old Whitehorn Bivvy site at J33 658061 / BV19 558 445 (not the position marked on
older maps). The partly collapsed bivvy has been removed. To bypass from the 1440-metre contour
on the ridge, head east and descend the marked creek that heads south, then sidle across a basin to
Whitehorn Ridge again by the 1300-metre contour.
Follow the ridge down on tussock leads. A very overgrown track begins in the scrub basin below
here and white permolat may be found at J33 659047 / BV19 559 431. It is just followable, with care, and
after about 500 metres leads into a narrow channel gully overhung with scrub that gives fairly open
travel for some while. Markers disappear. When it gets rougher, another gully 30 metres to the true
right also gives fairly open travel. When that gets gnarly, the ridge 100 metres to the true left leads
down to finish about 100 metres west of the Crawford swingbridge. Expect to bushbash.
Times : Lathrop Saddle to Whitehorn Ridge scrubline, about 6 hrs ;
Whitehorn Ridge scrubline to Crawford Forks, 2–3 hrs

Quality: 
0
Gone: 
0
Length: 
0m
Bolts: 
0
Natural pro: 
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UUID: 
54bcd3ce-982d-4a1b-ac9a-c96adb5f678b