Waitaha Valley, West Coast December 2020
Situated on a tussock flat in the headwaters of the central West Coast’s mighty Waitaha River, Top Waitaha Hut has a commanding view over the nearby Hitchin and Bloomfield Ranges. A classic ex-NZFS 6-bunk hut, it serves as an important waypoint for parties heading to and from the iconic Ivory Lake, or as a destination in its own right.
Last year, Colin Morris took on a project to renovate the hut, working with DOC’s Tony Thrupp. In August the Backcountry Trust granted $15,000 to undertake the work. Morris managed a reconnaissance visit in November 2020 and found the hut in better condition than he expected, although water damage had affected the ply lining the walls and ceiling, and a new roof, stainless steep bench and windows were other clear priorities.