Dorset Ridge hut got a much overdue facelift and is looking great again. The work was funded by the Greater Wellington Backcountry Network (GWBN). The work was spread over 2 trips totalling 10 days working on the hut.
The hut was built in 1968 and was one of the 20 or so S70 type huts built for the deer control operations by Paul Gush, NZ Forest Service culler. The hut replaced the original Dorset Ridge hut built in 1956. Modifications were made by the Horowhenua Hunters Club in 2008 including adding an enclosed porch to the front.
Original Dorset Ridge hut 1967
Work included cutting back vegetation causing damage to the hut exterior cladding, and taking over the hut site generally, cleaning the inside and outside of smoke and mould, interior and exterior repaint, ditto with the toilet, line the space where the orginal forest service food locker had been, mattresses were cleaned, repair to windows and firewood cut. The track down from Dorset Ridge was cut through the scrub areas. The previously removed skylite was reinstated, resulting in a much light interior.
Materials and gear needed two flights in and fairly full one out.
Gear was flown in by top pilot JD of Amalgamated Helicopters in the H600.
The sub alpine vegetation had encroached on the hut, and toilet, causing dampness and deterioation of the exterior cladding
The hut with McGregor behind
Starting the interior repaint. The walls had been badly damaged by smoke.