Task Force Event - Thursday 2nd December

Ben Lomond – Outdoor community support project, Remove wilding pines. 

Ben Lomond is the mountain overlooking Queenstown and whilst we are not climbing to the top, there will still be about an hour’s uphill walk from the Skyline Gondola to the site we would work on, so we are quite high at about 1049 metres high. The top of the Skyline gondola, where we would start walking from, is about 800 metres high. See below snip from a topo map and circled in red pen the start (at the gondola), and the area we would be walking to. A reasonable amount of fitness would be required just to get there.

This is weather dependent. Where we would be going is an alpine environment, therefore this event can only happen if we have fine weather on the day, and there is no snow on the ground. 

The track will still be muddy and possibly slippery and it will be cold up there but if we have blue sky and sunshine this will be perfect. 

We need 50 people on this project, so first in first served.

If we have good weather, the high altitude may still be cold, therefore it is important that everyone carries a small backpack with some additional warm clothing, water & food, and wears sturdy shoes, as the track will be muddy. The terrain we would work on is on a slope covered in low grasses and small plants and these plants will be wet and sometimes it is tricky to see where to step.

Skyline will supply complimentary gondola tickets for our team. 

We will have a set of loppers, a hi-viz vest (unless you bring your own), and some gardening gloves (unless you bring your own) ready for everyone at the top of the gondola.

The track up from the gondola goes past the Skyline Luge, then up into a large pine forest where it is dark and dingy and nothing else lives! Then we walk out into the alpine tussocklands, and as we walk higher, the views get better and better.

The views from where we would work are spectacular!

9:00am Coach transfer @ Millenium Hotel driveway

9:30am Meet at bottom gondola terminal (4 people in each gondola)

10:00am Everyone should be at the top of the gondola, collect tools, H&S briefing
10:15am Start walking up, possibly include several breaks where we regroup & quick talk about why we remove wilding pines etc – fitness dependent
11:30am Get to the site and we will do a short training piece on how to remove the wilding pines so they don’t grow back

2-3 hours work including a break for lunch

2:00-2:30pm Start walking back down

2:45-3:30pm Arrive back at the top of the gondola

4:00pm Coach transfer from Gondola base, to Millenium Hotel

At that stage, you would be able to enjoy some of the Skyline’s facilities if you like, ie luge, cafe, bar, bungy jump etc – see Skyline Website for ideas. Or if you prefer, you could all just head back down the gondola.

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