The misty, isolated conditions in the Tararua Range could be unnerving for trampers. One tramping hut was thought to be haunted:
Cedric Wilson, a keen Tararua hunter based at Powell Hut, went hunting near Mitre in February 1945 and was never seen again. The legend of Cedric the Ghost began when two of his friends went up Holdsworth to look for him. While staying in Powell Hut they felt his presence and had a terrifying night. A later party had a similar experience.
Some years later, a Hutt Valley Tramping Club party decided to test the mettle of a group of scouts who set out from Powell Hut, in misty conditions, to climb to the summit. Don Millward, dressed in [a] sleeping bag liner, hid beside the track above Powell and waited for the scouts to return. When they loomed out of the mist he drifted across the track and disappeared, and quickly returned to the hut by another route. Soon after, the shaken scouts arrived and told Millward and his friends their story of Cedric the Ghost.
John Rundle, cited in Chris Maclean, Tararua: the story of a mountain range. Wellington: Whitcombe, 1994, p. 224.
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Photograph by John Rundle
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