Sunday, December 13, 2009

CACTUS topples Tahua and conquers Kaniere in an awesome day.
The wild West Coast dished up a meteorological challenge with constant rain including wind and hail on the tops for the end of term challenge.

An awesome effort from the team! 1km vertical climb in a 7hr return trip! The team pulled together as they battled wind chill and hail to reach the summit at 1200m elevation. They were glad for being adequately equipped to face the conditions.
Awesome effort from Isaac Winsley standing in for Alan to help the team reach the summit.
A hot milo, then the 10k challenge of the Kaniere Walkway which the CACTI quickly took in their stride, a quick trip back to Hans bay for the Kaniere Kaos obstacle course - a vehicle tow, stretcher carry, pole carry including a crawl under a net, pole swim, wall-climb with a final vertical innertube slalom in the Lake to finish the day.
Highlights from an instructors point of view:
The team looking out for one another and encouraging each other.
Everyone stepping up to the challenges especially some of the younger ones.
Awesome team!

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Wednesday, December 9, 2009


Final details of Term 4 Challenge. We are Traversing Kelly's Range and rafting out on the Taipo River.

This is an ascent of 1km from 400 to 1400 m above sea level via Carroll Hut on the Kelly's Range.

A steep climb to the tops brings us to the crest of the range which is the border between Canterbury and the West Coast. After traversing the tops we drop down through the bush to the Taipo River and meet Wild West Adventure Company for the raft out at 3 pm. This will be an awesome challenge.

View the map of the route at
or view below.

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Friday, November 20, 2009



Click to show full post for more details.

This will be an all day event involving an initial land based challenge of a 4-6 hour tramp followed by an aquatic section either above or below ground level.
Participants will need:
  • A longsleeved thermal top and leggings - polyprop or similar.
  • A polar fleece.
  • A waterproof jacket.
  • A beanie type woolen hat.
  • A day pack.
  • Sturdy footwear.
  • Woolen socks.
NO COTTON! (eception ofr underwear only)
These are essential minimum requirements for the event.

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Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Awesome effort:


2k Run

2k Row

5k Bike






26m 25s





22m 35s





25m 0s





31m 0s





29m 32s

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Morning sessions are averaging about 8 people though 19 have turned up for at least one session this term. Commitment makes a team guys. Life is busy so we all have to make it happen together. The more we have the more we can do.

An afternoon program has just got underway with 6-7 keen young people.

We have the potential for an awesome challenge if we can combine these two groups at the end of term.

Cape Fear is postponed to January now but planning is underway for an awesome end of term challenge.

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Friday, October 2, 2009


TERM 4 start on Wed 7th Oct. It will conclude with the Cape Fear on Dec 5 and there will be a river rafting or similar challenge just prior to this.

Get inspired. Encrouage your friend to join this should be an awesome term!

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Sunday, August 23, 2009


CACTUS is in recess.
Keep in touch and get primed up for a hard out 4th Term.
Term 4 will be an intense shorter course before end of term exams.

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Wednesday, July 1, 2009


06:30 Mananui to Mahinapua Challenge

Term 4 Challenge completed.
10 kg Pack run along beach to the Lake.
Blue team missed HI VIZ FLOURO ORANGE MARKERS and continued south.
Pink team reached obstacle course well in the lead, hurdled the wall
and were under the net and back again with the pole by the time the Blues made the wall.
Paddle Steamer Transition Pack PFD exchange.
Blue team dug deep and caught pinks by the end of the jetty.
Pole swim to boat ramp and final sprint to the carpark.
Blues pulled in first with a great effort.
Moro bars to the winners and conslolation prize to the losers (Moro bars).
The dry man misses out!

This was a short event due to winter sports commitments and the conclusion to a great term.
Thanks to HEHA for generous sponsorship for the life jackets.

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Wednesday, June 3, 2009


Calling all CACTI.
Prospective end of term challenge Sat 27th June.
Please confirm you availability and/or alternative date(s).

Will involve Mt Tahua ascent & descent, circumnavigation of Lake Kaniere
and possible Kayak section, among other things.
Repeat. Please confirm.

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Kaniere Kaos
Calling all CACTI.
Prospective end of term challenge Sat 27th June.
Please confirm you availability and/or alternative date(s).
Will involve Mt Tahua ascent & descent, circumnavigation of Lake Kaniere
and possible Kayak section, among other things.
Repeat. Please confirm.

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Friday, May 22, 2009

Invest your Gold in CACTUS!

Greetings Awesome CACTI!
Invest in a healty breakfast! Gold Coin Donation. Indoor triathlon next friday!

Due to increasing numbers of CACTI staying for breakfast with ravenous winter appetites we are requesting a gold coin donation towards this healthy kick start to the day!

Friday the 29th will be an indoor triathlon at the Gym. Treadmill/row/bike.
Let's make take it as an event and have a good turn out.
It's an opportunity to challenge yourself.

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Saturday, April 25, 2009

CACTUS International Goah Greens

46 kms of beach, 3 river crossings, 100 seals, 1 vehicle and trailer tow, 10 ks of lagoon, a 2 ks road run, 10 ks of Lake and Creek, 1 log carry, 1 crows nest and of course 1 CACTUS 5,and 3 hrs sleep in 24 hrs later....

NZ's Daniel Honey, Zak Hamilton, Zak Neale and Thailand's awesome 'M' took out the world record for non-stop human propulsion from a spot 3 kms south of Greens Beach to Hokitika!
Day one - A refreshing start fording the Wanganui at waist deep. 8.8 kms of boulder hopping and beach walking through two colonies of seals (approx. populations 12 & 85)took us to a great spot for the night. Cooking on the open fire and bivying on the beach beneath an awesome canopy of stars and galaxies!
9 pm all asleep - when they will have 20 mins to be at packed and and standing in line - it will be a bid day.
Day two - 12:00 am. Out of sleeping bags. Hoochies folded. Packs packed. Squad 'shun!
3 minutes at attention to think about the day ahead... We're off - destination Hoki - 50 kms away.13.5 kms ahead the Waitaha makes the sea.
4:00 am: We make the Waitaha for low tide. Turning around we see a fire. Last nights embers - still no Wayne. We head for the river to cross but looking back again see a torch. Wayne Jones (previous legendary CACTUS instructor and a mate are there to boil the billy for a welcome milo. They see us across the Waitaha - again wasit deep. We forge on past Bold Head. The hour or so before dawn are hard going - we battle sleep and trudge on. 10 more ks to the Mikonui.
7:30 We make the Mikonui right on time. Alan Stevens our other awesome CACTUS instructor is Waiting. Another milo and some breakfast. 3 horses crash our gathering for a feed of dry weetbix.(Is that hard to swallow or what?). We soldier on to the Totara. Only 5 more ks of beach.
9:40 We make Ross beach. We head down the road, the solid surface underfoot a welcome change. At the turn off to the Old Totara Rail Bride waits the ute with the kayaks on the trailer. The engine seems to have stopped! No worries - CACTUS is here. We happen to have a rope to pull the ute and trailer to the river. (Only 1 kilometre after all.) We struggle on the slight rise and in true CACTUS instructor style Alan jumps out and pushes too.
10:00 Set up for paddling and we hit the water. We are just on the tide and the lagoon is still filling - but it will turn. The team is battling tiredness and fatigue but press on. Light cloud takes the heat off the day. 10 ks to Ruatap. Towars the head of the lagoon we battle beds of reeds. Most are tackled bulldozer style but some require careful negotiation and at one we have to portage. The last 500 m and we are bottoming out as the tide receeds. We make landfall and carefully disembark - the mud is two feet deep in the lagoon.
1:30 We are behind ETA and Alan has had a paddle while waiting. Another brew and a break for lunch and we load the trailer and run the 2 ks to Lake Mahinapua. Alan has the Kayaks waiting again and we're off across the lake. Daniel battles cramp but pushes through. The sun pops out as we make the creek. It is warm and we are tired. We battle fatigue and sleep. I'm sitting in the back of the tandem and I realise that if I stop paddling I will fall asleep. We struggle with motivation and sanity. (Zak estimates I only went mad 7 times on the trip.) I resort to bribery. Fish and chips if we make the boat ramp by 4:00. "Too hard - 5:00." These boys drive a hard bargain. We settle for 4:30. The current picks up. Alan is waiting on the bride on the Highway. My blurred mind wonders what an earth he is doing with the billy - we're not stopping now. My thoughts are answered by an unexpected downpour. M and I sprint out of range and turn to see Zak H get a good dousing. Not far to go. The boys realise we can make 4:30 and dig deep. We stop at the river mouth and I have one of those timely moments. For the first time ever my cell phone jams. Start again. Turn off... turn on.. coverage... initialising contacts... answer phone... We contact family and head across the Hoki for the boat ramp. A log carry to the tancred St round about and Daniel climbs the pole for the crows nest. Zak H leads the essential CACTUS 5 press ups. Mission accomplished.
We made 4:30[deducting time for telecommunications hold ups]. I am still trying to work out how they ate so much fish and chips...
All in a day for CACTUS and an awesome show of mental nad physical determination. Awesome team! A special accolade for the mighty M! A CACTUS novice who stepped up to the challenge. CACTUS Thailand!

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Monday, March 30, 2009

Waiting for Woah Whataroa!

Greetings awesome CACTI, 

Whataroa has been delayed. There is a slideshow on the blog now - if you click on it it should open up the album in picassa web albums. Click again on the images if you want to get the big picture.
This is a beautiful river so we're in for a great challenge. Go hard out in the mean time and stay fit.

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Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Woah! Whataroa!

Set aside the 27/28th March.

We venture in to the Whataroa "NZ's Grand Canyon"on the 27th and raft it out on the Saturday.
This is a bit of full on Whitewater action to step up to. Read the blurb from Josh at Eco-Rafting.
More details to come...

Full or Half-Day Wilderness Glacier Heli Rafting

Perfect for seasoned rafters and first-timers. This river has plenty of action, awesome scenery, and lots of rapids (22+) ...  ... at our start point, the guides pump up the raft and give a comprehensive safety briefing and paddle training.

We start off easy, while learning to maneuver the raft and hold on through the waves, the further we go down the river, the bigger the rapids get. There are 2 deep canyons on this trip and a few easy portages around big un-runnable rapids, one that includes a short abseil. This river has plenty of rapids with a few grunty ones. If anyone does not want to run the big rapids they can walk around them and watch their friends go through.

We stop for lunch at a side stream and go for a walk to explore a waterfall in a side canyon and swim in some of the clearest water in New Zealand. This is our most popular and frequently run trip, and is a huge crowd-pleaser. We frequently get guests coming back for a second trip (we offer super special deals for return business) thats how good this trip is. Dont believe us? Check out the flicker photo gallery! [ ]. 

This river has limited numbers of people allowed on it per season and only 1 raft trip per day is allowed to guarantee you a real wilderness experience. The scenery is amazing.

With over 22 rapids this is possibly the best value for money raft trip in the country.

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Monday, March 9, 2009

RFL Required Fitness Level 2nd Mar 09









































EFL Male





 EFL Female










RFL Male





RFL Female





EFL = Entry Fitness Level for NZ army training.

RFL = Required Fitness Level for NZ army training graduates.

Awesome effort guys!

Work on strength in your weaker areas. Set your goal to get to hte next level by the end of the course.

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