Second mesh at Frances Hodgkins!

Access: Even with a fragile barrier at the top of the slope, we are still able to find a way to rig safely.

Drillability: The presence of clay at different depths has obliged us to alternate the use of a down hole hammer and drag bits, to drill top anchors 4m deep embedded in 90mm holes, whereas on most jobs of that kind just a hand-drill and 2m holes should do.

Quickly done, Well done!

Lindis Pass road is exposed to some rocks from bluffs near Camp Creek.

Lindis oct 09 (DAS)
Lindis oct 09 (DAS)

Once again, helicopter sluicing and scaling by abseiling means have successfully permitted us to get rid of a few truck loads of rocks overhanging SH4 near Lindis Pass.

We made in five days the work planned for ten, to the satisfaction of Opus consultants . Thanks to NZTA maintenance manager from Downer EDI Works and the road management team who did a very professional work.


A Team Work

Do you know what some abseilers do during winter?

Ski-mountaineering races!

Skin up Ohau 2008 (c) Alexis Poilvert
Alexis, skinning up during Black Diamond Ohau Blast 2008


These races simply consist in racing on skis from one point A to B in steep mountaineering terrain, out of ski-field boundaries. It usually involves lots of skinning up, fast transitions and epic downhill skiing. Qualities required are endurance for the skinning up and pure off-piste skiing ability.

Very popular in Europe, see, these competitions started  3 years ago in New Zealand :  Although this form of racing on skis was first developed in the 1920’s in Switzerland, the sport has recently benefited from fantastic improvement in gear and time, see Fast And Furious  article by Andrew McLean.

Happy Winners (c) DAS

Well done Gena & Alexis!

After your excellent results at Craigieburn last month, hard training, tenacity and team work have been paying once again at Mt Cheeseman competition The Tour NZ, last week-end.
Not unlike the Nevis Bluff 😉

Check out lots of beautiful photos by John O’Malley of The Tour Backcountry Ski Touring Race 19th and 20th Sept 2009 on


You can expect Drilling and Abseil Services staff to be fit this spring !

French visitor

Thanks for your help Benoit ; Good drilling in New Caledonia!
Thanks for your expertise, Benoit ; Good drilling in New Caledonia!

During 3 weeks, we had the pleasure to share Ben’s experience, six years team leader at Ouest Acro (French leading abseiling company), on our last work : 150square meter mesh installation and rock bolting. Ben took the chance to go to THE Match… and we have not heard of him since!


Nevis Bluff: successful and in due time!

Access and safety 

Climbing up to the workplace,credit J Barbour (c) DAS
Climbing up to the workplace, credit J Barbour (c) DAS

Installing the antirockfall barrier before start (c) DAS
Installing the antirockfall barrier before start (c) DAS

With our previous references on the same cliff, we succeeded on that tender. A team of four of us equipped in two weeks an access on that remote part of the Nevis Bluff. From the top first. Then with Heliworks delivery, we were able to built a rock fall barrier above the area to be worked on. The installation of 120m of ladders and steps bridges allowed Fulton Hogan team and ours to gain access every morning, using a double fixed line system. For the following 5 weeks: hand drilling, blasting, hand scaling and helicopter watersluicing composed the program. Thanks to our ability and abseiling  skills, Drilling & Abseil Services has been a successful part of the operations involving helicopters, heavy traffic management and work at height. 

 Rock Bolting

Rock bolting after rock removal,credit Dave McKinney (c) DAS
Rock bolting after rock removal, credit Dave McKinney (c) DAS
Nevis Bluff, Queenstown side (c) DAS
Nevis Bluff, Queenstown side (c) DAS