Bruce Stream, Power Stream, Bealey Spur

7 April 2013

Seven arrived at the Bealey Spur car park at 10am NZ Standard Time. Those that hadn’t reset their clocks would have arrived at the meeting place an hour early and wondered where the people were.

We started up the broad, gravelly Bruce Stream on a cool but sunny morning with Ruth out front setting a brisk pace. Soon the stream narrowed and boulders became bigger. At one point the vertical walls on either side formed a gorge only 4m wide. In a few places stream progress was too awkward and we had to scramble up through vegetation. Where Power Stream joins the Bruce we veered right but after an estimated 1¼ km we came face to face with an appreciable waterfall which for some reason doesn’t rate a mention on the map or Sue’s GPS internal map. It was either return or climb up a steep, narrow gully of fine, loose argillite. Tree branches at the side of the gully gave us something to grab but when these ran out we seemed to be hanging on by our finger nails. Small flying rocks were a hazard in places. No route parallel with the stream showed itself so we climbed, hoping to reach Bealey Spur. At two locations I was wondering if we should retreat but we progressed past the last hard bit and on to an easy bit of forest. Soon we were on tussock where we stopped for a well-deserved lunch in the sun. There was no overall desire to go up to the spur hut so we headed down to the cars. If we’d got past the waterfall and attempted the planned trip to the upper Power Stream, we would have run out of daylight. It was an impressive waterfall. (Kerry Moore)