Be involved

Out There

Don’t just get out there, get involved A couple of years ago the wording on the reverse of DOC’s business cards were changed. Now, blazoned across the back are the...

How not to cross a river

Out There

The best skill isn’t how to cross a river, it’s knowing when not to cross Looking at large rivers is mesmerising. The constantly-changing surface pattern occasionally interrupted by a breaking...

Time for a brew

Out There

Homemade twig cookers bring us closer to nature in a way that hi-tech cooking systems just can’t imitate These days cookers are pretty amazing pieces of technology. There’s a whole...

Exploration to be remembered

Out There

Antarctica tests all who go there, whether South Pole adventurers or scientists on the verge of new discoveries Finally our journey stops. The roar of the engines and the metal...

Preconceived ideas

Out There

Just because a track is famous doesn’t mean it’s not a wilderness experience anymore Somehow, it seems, we build up preconceived ideas about certain tracks that just aren’t for us....

Preservation

Out There

It’s ridiculously easy getting lost in the New Zealand bush and equally difficult to be found It’s school camp season and this time I got to play being lost in...

Boredwalks

Out There

Boardwalks and viewing platforms conform to a standard that make outdoor experiences predictable and dull The Hump Ridge is a special place, and unique in many ways. It’s where southern...

Made of New Zealand

Out There

Public conservation lands can be unique incubators for innovation Almost every Kiwi knows that Bill Hamilton invented the jet boat engine and how this farmer turned engineer living on a...

Sensing the wild

Out There

Wilderness trips are about more than what is seen; they are about what is sensed, absorbed and assimilated Up along the Ngamoko Track, just above the shores of Lake Waikaremoana...

Into the unknown

Out There

Older maps had blank areas where no one had been. Today, Google Earth will ‘take’ us there, but is this an advantage? One of my favourite maps of this country...

The wild west

Out There

The Fiordland monorail requires unacceptable permanent damage to a World Heritage Area, says Mick Abbott Minister for Conservation, Nick Smith, is to be congratulated for his decision to decline an...

Act on what you know

Out There

On a trip to Fiordland, Mick Abbott realises that to know our wildest places you have to do more than simply walk in them Monday. The phone rings and Kennedy...

Into the wild

Out There

Wilderness is an idea that has gone through many different versions. To begin with, wilderness was a heathen place, out on the other side. It was godless and full of...

Nature is the best teacher

Out There

  Mick Abbott discovers that when life and nature intertwine, the result is even more beautiful than the sum of its parts   It was our love of the hills...

'Bloody DOC'?

Out There

It’s no good blaming the ills of the backcountry on one cash-strapped department, says Mick Abbott This Easter I was in Top Hope Hut, in the Lake Sumner area, enjoying...

The new wild

Out There

Modern wilderness areas are not just hidden away in the backcountry – they’re being made every day by volunteers and environmentalists, writes Mick Abbott Take the ferry from Auckland Wharf...

No. 11 - Experience Fiordland

The Life List

We’ve seen it many times – that amazing image of a pristine view that just seems to scream: “Come here!” Fiordland is spoilt for such views, and because of this,...

A river rules my life

Wild Comment, Out There

On a week-long rafting trip, Mick Abbott comes to view rivers in an entirely different light Big rivers are my adversary. I’ve walked for 30km on the true left of...