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Bob’s Camp Biv, Mt Thomas Conservation Area

Bob's Camp Biv. Photo: Jo Stilwell
Area
Mt Thomas Conservation Area
Distance
9.69km to biv
Time
4-5hr
Grade
Easy/Moderate
Accom.
Bob’s Camp Biv, two bunks
Access
From Hayland Road, off the Oxford to Loburn Road
Map
BW23
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Bob's Camp Biv Mt Thomas Conservation Area (gpx, yo 127 KB)
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From the Wooded Gully picnic area and car park, finding the start of the Ridge Track is tricky, as a walk along a confusing array of forestry roads is required. Cross the stile at the locked gate at the northernmost end of the picnic area. Follow the forestry road for about one kilometre, taking the second formed road on the right.

The track starts a short distance up this road. It’s worth the effort to locate the start of the track – it goes straight up, through pine forest initially but eases on reaching the mountain beech forest.

It’s an easy three-hour walk up to the ridge and tussock clearing where you can turn right to the summit of Mt Thomas, or left to Bob’s Camp Biv. Heading left, a further hour and a half along the undulating, mostly bush-covered ridge takes you to the next red tussock clearing where marker poles guide you down to the biv.

The cute wee biv has the unusual feature of a barrel roof.

Wander back up to the ridge to enjoy views stretching east across the Canterbury Plains to Banks Peninsula, and west to the Craigieburn Range.

Head back along the ridge and down Wooded Gully Track for the return journey, passing impressive large Halls totara and a lush understory of ferns, and even a few rimu and tree ferns in the lower valley.