Adventures in the Wilderness

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They are back!

A highlight for the group was the openness with which they were able to share. The difference in relationships and character was noticeable during the 30 mins I spent with them before and after the trip.


Yes those are croc’s on Blair’s feet (well the cheap version). One of the pairs of boots that was hired fell apart on the second day. Perhaps WOS should obtain a few more pairs so we can loan them to anyone who needs them. Feel free to assist!

IMG_4236They are done, and still smiling!






Kaiapoi Trip

I have just heard from the group out this week. They are doing well – a few aches and pains after a testing trip over Binser Saddle first day, and a gradual uphill stretch today. I bet they sleep well tonight!

A spot of guide training

Blair and two of our guides took a trip up Mt Oxford for some extra training. They came back with some pretty cool pictures –  I couldn’t resist sharing them.


Looking towards Oxford and the sunrise

Looking towards Oxford and the sunrise

Waiting for the sunrise on top of Mt Oxford

The top of Mt Oxford

Raoul and Steven at Ryde Falls

Raoul and Steven at Ryde Falls

The sun peeking above the cloud

The sun peeking above the cloud


It was very cold

It was pretty cold

Winter two years ago

Leap frog on the way between Binser and Andrews Shelter

The first week in July is often known for its settled weather in the mountains. Freezing nights and clear blue days – have you ever seen freezing fog? It sparkles.

I wonder if tomorrows storm will come to anything. . .

Two years ago, the first week of July saw a group of young men from Campus Church spending good quality time studying God’s Word together for a week. There was little to distract them from their mission of getting to Lake Minchin and back again – definately not phones, facebook or the internet! They walked through snow, over ice and spent more than one night in a tent. They sought after God through studying His Word and being thrown into dependence on Him. It was not a walk in the park.

The feedback from this trip was truly encouraging.

“Something that impacted me the most on this trip was the need for us to acknowledge our sin in humility for God to use us.”

“Something God really taught me on the trip was to act as salt and light to all the earth.”

‘The views were impressive and the conversations challenging.”

“Something that impacted me on this trip was seeing the benefit that a week away has on growing and building relationships as Christian Brothers.”

downstream from Casey Hut

And we are back. . .

It has been a long time, a very long time, since I have regularly posted news on this website. I’m sorry! I hope to fix that.

Blair attended a conference last weekend for Christian Outdoor Leaders Conference run by Adventure Specialties in the North Island. It was an enjoyable time for him where he met heaps of people and made some helpful contacts for Wide Open Spaces in the future. He got to experience white water rafting for the first time and spend a few hours fishing to top it off. He did make the comment on returning home that he felt old! I think we need to get him straight with that one, because if he is old, I am older!

We continue to pray and seek God for guidance for the Wide Open Spaces Trust. This weekend may have opened the doors for new opportunities.

Blue Mountain Adventure Centre Lodge – location of the conference


From a recent trip Wide Open Spaces assisted with. . .

Four days away started with honing our river crossing skills on the Jolly Brook (which gets it’s name from the river crossing every three minutes: “oh, it’s that jolly brook again”), and getting used to clinging to your crossing buddy for dear life (well, at least some extra stability). We enjoyed exploring the valleys, seeing amazing views from ridges, and even having a hot lake-side breakfast one morning. By night we’d make camp, always with the important task of making hot chocolates, and then making the most of wherever we were: tenting on river flats, cooking on the warm pot belly fire of the Jolly Brook hut, and sleeping in the deceptively comfortable canvas beds in the rustic Gabriel’s hut.

Throughout, the focus of the trip was on Jesus, as we looked at John’s gospel, particularly what Jesus offers and what it means to have life in him. Also hugely encouraging was hearing how God had been at work in each of our lives, and praying for one another in the joys and the struggles.

So, after getting back to civilisation, and hot showers, and marvelling at how easy it is to boil the jug; I’m left with a stack of cool photos, new friends, and a renewed determination to fix my eyes on Jesus, the cross, and eternal life.









Delayed Coverage

At the end of last term we were blessed to take a great group of students and leaders out in the Lake Sumner area. Unfortunately it has taken me a long time to get news of this trip out! My excuse is pregnancy – shouldn’t make excuses though!

So here is some feedback from the group Stories from St Johns Youth, April 2013 pdf

And here are some pictures – enjoy!