You have to make the most of the 'good weather weekends' during a New Zealand Winter. Even though the days are short, we are spoilt for mountain tramping adventures near Nelson. We made the trip up to the Buckland Peaks, at the Northern tip of the Paparoa Range (behind Westport) over the 'shortest day' weekend. We camped on the tops and spent a few hours on the second day exploring the peaks; a grassy undulating wonderland of rockfalls, giant boulders, and tarns. It...
The Inland Pack Track
The Inland Pack Track is a great overnighter taking you into the Paparoa National Park. If you have a fine weekend on the West Coast, it's definitely not to be missed.
The track was built in 1867 during the gold rush to avoid travel along the dangerous coastline. Beginning on the coast at Fox River in the North, it winds approximately 25Kms through rivers, gorges, forests and plains, re-joining the coast at the Pororari River to the South. Long sections are...
The Big River Track - Waiuta to Big River Mine
This weekend's hike took us South West into Victoria Forest Park. If like me, you haven't heard of it before, it is roughly sandwiched between the Nelson Lakes National Park to the East, and the Paparoa range to the West. The nearest town is Reefton. There are lots of walking tracks in the park, and we walked the 'Big River Track' from Waiuta to Big River.
We chose this track because it is pretty low elevation (we didn't fancy...
The Puponga Hilltop Track
With it's golden sandy beaches, magnificent rock stacks and arches, huge sand dunes, stunning clifftop views, and rolling farmland, the Puponga Hilltop Track should be up there on your list of easily-accessible-must-do-day-walks. There are lots of options for walks in the area, ranging from just an hour or so, to a full day. Having had a reasonable leisurely morning, we didn't start walking until 11.30am and managed to cover Wharariki Beach and over half...
An Overnighter to the Kahurangi Lighthouse and Keepers Cottage
We used the excuse of snow in the mounatins, to make a weekend trip out to the Kahurangi lighthouse and keepers house. This beautiful West coast walk was a delight! The long drive in to the Anatori River, via the causeways of the Whanganui inlet near Farewell Spit was incredible in itself. The main event - the hike to Kahurangi Point and the lighthouse crosses beautiful farmland to the Turimawiwi river. From there you...
Charming Creek Walkway
If you're heading to the upper West Coast of New Zealand's South Island it's definitely worth stopping in at the little seaside village of Ngakawau to walk the beautiful Charming Creek Walkway. The full 9.5Km (one way) riverside trail follows an historic railway line to the Charming Creek coal mine near Seddonville. The trail passes through an impressive river gorge, railway tunnels, old railway and mill workings, over bridges and past the spectacular...