Its fair to say I know our hunting block, Mt Maude, like the back of my hand, well enough to refer to it as “my Maude”. With a main 4WD track leading to the summit of Little Mt Maude (845m), we favour hunting Maude from the top down and make good use of the leading ridges as well as an extensive network of hunting tracks cut to follow existing game trails and contours. It’s tough, honest mountain hunting terrain made easier by the extensive knowledge of our guide team, the track network, and the balance between open grasslands and native manuka and kanuka brush country. Plenty of cover, plenty of feed and well managed hunting help provide outstanding hunting opportunities.
Mount Maude is located at E 129983 N5054352 on the Wanaka topographical map F40. Maps and hunting go hand in hand. The majority of my maps are now relegated to a box on the office selves, all that info, and more, is conveniently on an app on my phone.
From the summit of Maude,1315m, one has an amazing view of the town of Wanaka, both Lake Wanaka and Lake Hawea and a commanding view of the Upper Clutha basin.
Mt Maude is private leasehold land that makes up the south eastern corner of the much larger Mt Burke Station. Maude is a “he”, taking its name from early registered occupiers of the land it encompasses, the Maude brothers around the 1870s. At this time Wanaka was known as Pembroke, the name Wanaka not being used until 1940.
Mt Burke Station is under the stewardship of the owners, the Burdon family. I first hunted Maude in the early 1990’s with the permission of Cotty Burdon. Cotty’s son, Tim is now my landlord. Tim and I have known each other for 30 something years. Relationships with property owners is key to any agreement, with a hunting lease it is critical.
In 2014-15, 17 kilometers (10.5 miles) of deer fence were erected along the south and south-east boundaries of neighbouring properties and up and over a lower peak, 230m below the summit peak (1315m) and down through the steep western faces to join existing fences on Mt Burke. Maude’s days as a merino wether block closed. The area encircled by this fencing operation is 750-800ha off the map, take the lie of the land into account and we estimate a total area of around 1400-1500ha (3500 acres). It’s big, it’s steep and it’s beautiful, has views to die for and supports a well-managed population of Red Stags, Fallow Deer and Chamois. From time to time it holds a small population of Arapawa Rams and feral Billy Goats and the occasional Elk.
We operate our hunting business, Telford Hunting NZ Ltd, as a registered Game Estate and specialise in fair chase hunting for Stags, Fallow Bucks and Chamois.
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