Kirwans Hut - Welcome to the Jungle

On a high from the rugged beauty and raw challenge from bike packing the St. James Trail, we searched for another hut to explore on our journey to the North Island. We landed on the Kirwans Hut just outside of Reefton. The recent rain in the region made the climb a tough and boggy march. It was well worth it for the next day’s decent: Over two hours of loam surfing through mud and jungle.  

Trail Type:

Singletrack with some unridable sections in either direction 

Trip Plan:

We left mid-day and arrived just in time for dinner. Kirwans Hut was easily the nicest hut I’ve ever encountered. We're talking a mudroom, kitchen and double pain windows. In the morning, we had a leisurely breakfast waiting for the clouds in the valley to break, then returned via the same trail. 

Dan navigating some deadfall. 

Elevation Gained:

1380 meters 

 Peak-a-boo view from Kirwans Hut 

Peak-a-boo view from Kirwans Hut 

Kilometers Traveled:

About 28

 Kirwans Hut 

Kirwans Hut 

Weather:

Out: Humidity was high but we didn’t experience any rain. 

Return: was hot and sunny. 

 Dan getting barreled in the green room 

Dan getting barreled in the green room 

Company: 

It was great, as always. We only had to share the hut with two other people.

 Pack loaded, decent ready. Dan looking over the valley from Kirwans Hut 

Pack loaded, decent ready. Dan looking over the valley from Kirwans Hut 

Bike: 

Yeti Sb5c and Giant Reign

 The Yeti Sb5c and Giant Reign ready to shred on day 2

The Yeti Sb5c and Giant Reign ready to shred on day 2