In July 2014 a friend and I ventured down to Homer Hut in the Darran Mountains to see what the place was like and to learn from other climbers at the annual Otago Chapter climbing meet organised by Al Walker.

During phone and email discussions with Al in the lead up to the meet we had identified a route, supposedly suitable for relative novices like me – a climb up the steep southwest flanks of Mount Crosscut, around the north side of that mountain to the ridge leading to Barrier Peak, then on to Barrier Knob. From there, a drop down to Gertrude Saddle, then up again to Traverse Pass. Then perhaps a quick side trip to Mount Talbot’s summit, before continuing westward to Mount McPherson, before descending Talbot Ladder to Homer Saddle and out. A nice two day route starting and ending at Homer Hut. Well, yeah right!

For a route map and more images

Peter Laurenson is a member of the Wellington section of the New Zealand Alpine Club.

His website has a lots of resources for outdoor photographers, more images of the Darrans, as well as a bespoke mountain calendar, which goes on sale in spring each year.