Thomas River hut Jan 2011
This hut is situated on the TL of the Thomas River about 6km upstream from its confluence with the Haast River. The Thomas meets the Haast opposite the Highway at Thomas Bluff. Unless the Haast River is below normal flows it is not possible to ford to access the start of the route up the Thomas without swimming! [We used canoes. A commercial jet boat operation will drop & pick up parties at spots along the Haast river. From hut book entries we gathered that fishermen & hunters commonly helicopter in to the hut rather than walk]
Once across the Haast the route to the hut follows up the TL of the Thomas. In places the track is a bit overgrown especially lower down but is generally readily followable & heavily marked. It took us with day packs and stopping for a couple of short stops 3hrs to reach the hut from the Haast - Thomas confluence. Returning was 15 mins quicker largely due to skipping a section of overgrown track & boulder hopping instead.
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