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February 2017 Issue
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See more… historic hut graffiti

Historic Boulder Forks Hut, where Hillary's name is inscribed. Photo: Shaun Barnett/Black Robin Photography
Four huts where you can find interesting graffiti

“See if you can find Hillary’s name,” challenged Joe after we arrived at the historic Boulder Forks Hut. We set about examining the interior of the hut, thought to be more than a century old. It was built for mustering when optimistic graziers thought they could make a go out of running sheep in these high, dry mountains of southern Marlborough.

When Edmund Hillary and two other RNZAF personnel arrived here in June 1944 to climb nearby Pinnacle (2120m), they stayed in the hut. Back then, sheep still roamed to eat what little grass they could find.

Since Hillary’s visit, the sheep have gone, with manuka and wilding pines claiming the lower spurs and mountain faces. Not much has changed to the hut however. The bunks have been removed (as everyone stays in the...

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