Mt Buster and Mt Kyeburn


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Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Central Otago » Naseby
April 2nd 2008
Published: April 2nd 2008EDIT THIS ENTRY

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1: Mt kyeburn 21 secs
Mt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

View towards Mt Kyeburn as we start out for the day with the cloud rolling over the ranges

MT BUSTER AND MT KYEBURN



Last year when we were staying at Naseby one evening it turned very cold and we awoke the next morning to a dusting of snow on the Mt Ida ranges behind the Motorcamp, we looked up out topographical maps and tried to work out a way of getting closer to the snow. Mt Buster just in behind Naseby is where it all seemed to have happened, so we rugged up and headed off towards the Mt Ida Range to see how close we could get. On that occasion we stopped at the Little Kyeburn stream and took photographs, but agreed that when we came to Naseby next we would ezplore this fascinating area. In the meantime we have learnt of some amazing gold workings on Mt Buster at about 4500 ft high. So with a full tank of gas a picnic lunch and the billy for a boil up we headed out of Naseby on the Dansey's Pass Rd towards the Kyeburn Diggings, the Mt Buster turn off is only a few kilometers out of town. We reached the the Little Kyeburn stream again and forded it this time and started the long climb
Mt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Mt Kyeburn in the distance
up the track to Mt Buster, nearing he top we came across a group of trampers who had probably taken 2 or more hours to get where they were on this steep climb on what was a rather warm day. The road flattens out for a while after Mt Buster then enters the magical area of the Mt Buster Diggings. The diggings area is quite large and you are surrounded with an amazing white coloured quartz hills everywhere you look. The surface of the valley is crushed white quartz and looks very similar to a lovely white beach
We spent ages in the basin picking up stones and just trying to take in how hard a life it must have been up here at nearly 4500 ft in the snow for the miners. Within the basin there is one low hill that has been eroded away probably by the miners and the harsh weather conditions only to leave what looks like a carving ontop. This is the picture of Sheryll standing in front of it.
We left he diggings and continued on further up the track, at this point our map ran out, but we knew from conversations with Allan
Mt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Entrance to the Mt Buster diggings
(our gold man) that it went on for many miles more towards Otematata, Allan who is retired but never seems to stop doing something works once a year as the cook on a High Country Muster up here and he had told us about the trip, as we didn't have a map for that area we just parked "Sammy" the 4WD up and took in the 360" deg wall to wall scenery. to the west on a clear day you can see Mt Cook, Mt Aspiring and the Aviemore Dam over the nearby ranges. Unfortunately it wasn't clear enough today, but that didn't make the view any less spectacular. Sheryll noticed thousands of feet below us in the valley a small red dot starting to make it's way up the hill towards us. About 50 minutes later an old red Land Cruiser appeared and the driver stopped and got out to have a chat. Rex George was a local he told us he was well into his seventies a semi retired farmer but still had a few acresdown on the flats. He was up ther going around all the high country huts laying Rat poison. His old 4WD had a
Mt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Mt Buster Diggings
shovel and goldpan on the back. He had worked as a shepherd on a lot of tha stations in the area when he was younger ( I wondered what he meant by that, to still be up in the high country on his own in a vehicle when he was nearly knocking on 80 years) We apoke for an hour or so about his life in the mountains and he encouraged us to take a track to near the top of Mt Kyeburn at about 5,500 feet. My Kyeburn was back towards the Mt Buster diggings but mant feet above them.
We had a quick snack and headed off up the track beside the boundary fence heading for Mt Kyeburn. The track was fairly good, most of the way quartzy rock and occasionally breaking out into grass and mud, but overall not too bad. We didnt go to the top of the track as fuel was getting low and it was time to start heading back down again.
We came across Rex again, this time he was hooking up a motorbike he leaves hidden up in the High Country when he comes up in case the 4WD breaks down. I
Mt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Unusual formations in the quartz rock
asked him if his wife worried about him being away all day on his own in the mountains, he said she had got used to it but anyways he had a cellphone if he needed help, but he added he couldnt see the numbers on he keypad. I also knew that even though we were up so high, our own cellphones were not in coverage.
I have managed to get Rex's address in Naseby and when we get home we are going to send him a few off the pictures we took of him winding his way up to us from the valley thousands of feet below. Mt Kyeburn still has not been conquered, so another trip is needed, next time better prepared and with a map that continues on towards the Otematata area
Roll on holidays 2009 and many more years in the mountains like Rex the Musterer


Additional photos below
Photos: 24, Displayed: 24


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Mt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt  Buster & Mt Kyeburn
Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Mt Buster Diggings
Mt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt  Buster & Mt Kyeburn
Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Mt Buster Diggings
Mt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt  Buster & Mt Kyeburn
Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Mt Buster Diggings
Mt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt  Buster & Mt Kyeburn
Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Deer hoof prints in the mud
Mt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt  Buster & Mt Kyeburn
Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

The road far below near Tailings Creek out to Otematata
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Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Sheep grazing in the tussock grass
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Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Farmer Rex with whom we had a great chat high up in the mountains
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Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Lichen on the rocks high up on Mt Kyeburn
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Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Mt Domett in the distance
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Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Sheryll pondering which way is home. See our vehicle just a speck in the bottom right of the picture
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Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

The track to the top of Mt Kyeburn
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Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Setting sun on the Mt Ida Range
Mt  Buster & Mt KyeburnMt  Buster & Mt Kyeburn
Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

The following day as we were leaving there had been a light snowfall on Mt Kyeburn
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Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Snow on the ranges as we depart Naseby
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Mt Buster & Mt Kyeburn

Snow on the ranges as we depart Naseby the next day


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