Whakaahu (or just Kaahu as the locals call it) is a sharp summit to the East of Whakamaru and Mangikino. Due to its prominence it hosts a cell site towers as well as a SCADA repeater for the local power company – of which I am an employee. So one unassuming Saturday morning I opted to scale Whakaahu without the aid of a helicopter (which is the usual mode of access) to sus it out.
The day started out foggy and the weather forecast wasnt certain my day would be dry. There had been a bit of rain the previous evening so the ground was quite damp. But more importantly – I couldnt see the summit so I had to assume if I went up I would stumble across it eventually. As I got higher so did the clouds. The ascent was quite steep. The land owner said even going up on a motorbike was not safe. I essentially followed up the southern ridge (on the right in the top photo) which served me well but this was still steep. There was no track but as it was mostly in grass it wasnt difficult to make your own track.
Once at the top I made contact with ZL3GA on 7 MHz fairly quickly. But from there the contacts were slow coming. 80 m turned out to be the best band making 4 of my 8 contacts overall. 2 Activator points and a unique added to the log, with plenty of photos taken for the blog and work. Just over an hour on top and I was off back down.
Summit – Whakaahu ZL1/WK-084
Height –692 mASL (<300 m climb)
Access – Via Dairy farm at the southern edge of Whakaahu (399 Kaahu Road). About 1.5 hours up, 1 hour down.
Coverage –Cell sites at summit so excellent coverage
Summit Marker – Cell sites (trig blown over)
Land Access Permission –Required – from 16 Kaahu Road (Harcourt).
NB: Photos are not for use elsewhere, without prior approval.