Hello mysterious stranger.
Windy Hilltops began as a place for me to put trip reports, so I can remember where I’ve been. I find it useful and interesting when other people publish reports about their experiences around the place, so it seems nice to do the same in return. I’ll sometimes post other things here (amateur astronomy took up most of my leisure time before tramping did), but usually there’s a bias towards tramping, hiking, walking, or whatever you happen to call it, because that’s what I like to write about.
Outside of tramping I’m a computer geek, primarily of the code-writing and software designing variety. It’s good to get out to relax and I’ve been going on daywalks by myself for years, but have only gotten into overnight trips since about late 2006. It’s been a lot of fun, educational and enlightening.
I’m a member of the Wellington Tramping and Mountaineering Club, and many of the trips described here have been in association with that club. Typically this means areas in the lower North Island of New Zealand, with the occasional hop over to the South Island, mostly on longer weekends. People in the club have been great, but occasionally it’s also nice to get away solo.
Between January 2011 and August 2013 I lived in Melbourne (Australia), due to various other factors in life. As the weblog’s existing theme was quite well established around New Zealand and particularly lower-North-Island tramping, I decided not to pollute it with content from overseas. Therefore, there were fewer trip reports during that time, but I tried to keep posting actively about New Zealand issues.
Asking for advice: Several times now I’ve been asked for advice about visiting some of the places I’ve written about. This is great and I’m flattered, and I’ll do the best I can to help out within my limitations, or to try and suggest someone who can help whilst keeping in mind that good and accurate advice for some of these areas can be crucial for safety reasons. If you’re keen to ask something of this nature though, I’d appreciate it if you could please try to post the question publicly as a comment somewhere in my weblog as opposed to private email, unless it’s obviously inappropriate to do so. If I try to answer such questions, I like the idea of doing so in a public forum where other people can also benefit from the discussion, and also comment or otherwise offer useful feedback if they have something relevant to say.
– Mike McGavin.
mike_windy_gen_nz (that’s an email address if you make appropriate adjustments to the underscores).