“For a group of neuro-diverse students, the biggest challenge can be getting the opportunity to take part in outdoor adventures.” After five years in the making, nine neuro-diverse students from Wellington East Girls’ College head off for their biggest adventure yet – a six-day ski and snowshoeing trip to the Cardrona Valley. Unit Leader, Leonie King, shines light on the students’ barriers to entry and the preparation required to complete their Gold DOE's Hillary Award.
No ride, no problem. FMC Youth Award Grant recipient, Tara Isaacs, organises her own DOE Gold Qualifier from the ground up. Starting without a team, a shadower or a ride, she compiles a crew and all the components necessary to cross off one of her 'bucket list tramps' – the Abel Tasman Coastal Walk.
“What may seem to be a safe situation is only one mis-step away from catastrophe.” In an alpine environment, even one small error can lead to a life or death situation. A false sense of security coupled with an unfortunate event results in a tragic outcome for one mountaineer on Mount Ruapehu.
'No growth occurs when comfortable' becomes the guiding mantra for five Youth Award Grant recipients. Flexibility and persistence prove essential during their DOE Gold Qualifying Journey, as they respond to ill trampers and an emergency helicopter rescue along the Pinnacles.
Every club is faced with the task of finding and managing leadership, which can often feel daunting. FMC Executive Officer Administrator, Rebecca Gray, shares pro tips and creative solutions for designing a vibrant, effective and committed club committee that is sustainable for years to come.
For their Duke of Edinburgh Silver Qualifying Journey, Emiliana and her team opt for an alternative mode of backcountry travel – kayaking. Dubbed the Kayak Kapers, this team of twenty-four students (over half of whom had never kayaked) bravely took up their paddles and developed new skills during a multi-day exploration of the Marlborough Sounds.
“By the end of the weekend, we were like a well-oiled machine.” As recipients of the 2022 FMC Training Grant, members of the Wellington Tramping and Mountaineering Club shift from uncertainty to competency during their wilderness first aid weekend training.
What makes a suitable alpine leader and how do you identify these people in your club? New Zealand clubs have a proud tradition of passing on knowledge to newer members who later themselves become leaders. FMC provides a guide to identifying and supporting not only current alpine leaders, but a framework to raise up the next generation.
"All too often we can apply the ‘she’ll be right’ attitude to exploring the outdoors, but in an emergency, that is of little help." After assessing their outdated first aid skills, the Otago Section of the New Zealand Alpine Club puts their FMC Training Grant to good use – an intensive first aid course where they learn everything from CPR to managing real-life scenarios with hands-on practice.
Examining their Gold qualifying tramp through the lens of Te Whare Tapa Whā (the four dimensions of wellbeing), Alicia and Sophie reflect on the significant challenges they faced on the Rees-Dart Track and what strategies helped encourage them to continue.
Freezing temperatures bring unexpected challenges to a group of Duke of Edinburgh Silver qualifiers on the Ruahines. But through it all, they embrace the magic of a winter wonderland tramp surrounded by snow and icicles and demonstrate what is to be a good hut steward.
What better way to celebrate a wedding anniversary than by embarking on a family tramping adventure? On this occasion, a trek over the Kelly Range/Taipo River/Harman Pass tests skilled tramper and mum, Sonia Barrish, as she navigates slips and steep climbs on a four day, 51 kilometre tramp with her partner and 15-month old.
'Coddiwomple (v.): an English slang for travelling purposefully towards a vague destination.' Uncle Jacko contemplates the three types of fun and shares a few English and foreign words that capture the true essence of tramping in the backcountry.
It all started in the nineties with a group of paddlers keen to meet annually and paddle whitewater. Now an official tradition after twenty years, this tight-knit group continues to gather every Christmas to pass on their knowledge and love of kayaking to the next generation.
After a close call occurs during a club outing, the North Otago Tramping and Mountaineering Club (NOTMC) recognises the need to offer winter skills training for its newer members. With support from a FMC Training Grant, they organise a backcountry training weekend with a well-respected mountaineering and ski touring guide.
What does it mean to be a West Coast adventurer? For Rata Lovell Smith, a Wahine Toa who runs the Tai Poutini Polytechnic Outdoor Education Program, the West Coast adventurer is as unique and powerful as the landscape itself. In this river spotlight, she highlights Falls Creek – a West Coast kayaker's dream and 'a sacred chasm of water and rock.'
With packrafting on the rise, PRANZ recognises their responsibility to establish a culture of safety and training around this popular sport. With support from the FMC Training Grant, they have developed and are now road testing a curriculum for packraft instruction.
What is Forest & Bird's role in conservation and how can you get involved? Former Acting Manager of National Projects, Gillian Wadams, breaks down F&B's contributions from the local to the national level and how their mission relates to Aotearoa's goal of Predator Free 2050.
What's one simple and easy way you can help with conservation? Whether you're lounging in your backyard or out for an overnight mission in the bush, noticing and logging the bird life around you on the eBird app has a profound impact. Dan Burgin, NZ Bird Atlas Team, takes readers step-by-step into how they can begin 'Atlasing' on the eBird app and develop competency in their bird identification skills.
After asking paddlers from Whitewater New Zealand about their favourite huts for whitewater kayaking, Shaun Barnett shares their top choices along with a few of his own.
Three mates enjoy a wonderful day out, exploring a beckoning gorge amongst the incomparable Otago Alps. No helicopters needed for these guys, as they commit to a walk-in mission on the lower gorge of the Albert Burn, Lake Wānaka, Aotearoa New Zealand. Paddlers: Ewen Rodway, Michael McDonald, Ruari Macfarlane. Film by Ewen Rodway [...]