Isthmus Peak track
The 16Km (return) day hike up the Isthmus Peak Track rewards you with spectacular views of Lake Hawea and Lake Wanaka. The climb takes you up to 1385m on a well formed, steep track to the peak, via a gorgeous skyline ridge.
The Isthmus Peak track is about a 30 minute drive North out of Wanaka, past Albert town and Hawea, on the SH6.
I stayed at the Kidds Bush reserve DoC campsite last night about 20 minutes drive away to the North. I overslept, so I didn't...
Ben Lomond Summit - Queenstown
If you've seen photos showcasing the splendour of Queenstown from above with the town itself, Lake Wakitipu and some impressive looking mountain ranges in the distance - chances are it was taken from Ben Lomond.
Ben Lomond is the big mountain directly behind Queenstown. The summit stands at a height of 1438m. It is usually accessed from town via the Tiki Trail, or by taking the gondola and walking the rest of the way - firstly to the saddle, then...
Moke Lake is a 20 minutes drive out of Queenstown towards Glenorchy. Heading off the main road up to the right, the initially sealed road becomes unsealed - but at the time of writing it was well graded. Travel through Ben Lomond Station, and a beautiful lake, huge DoC campground and picnic area awaits you at the end. Camping is $13pp per night and there are a couple of sets of decent toilets and a kitchen shelter.
The lake is beautifully clean and clear and is...
Sugarloaf, Rockburn and Lake Sylvan loop
This is a great little 15Km hike in Mount Aspiring National Park. It takes in the Sugarloaf Pass via the Sugarloaf track, then heads down the Rockburn track to the old Rockburn shelter site. Finally it picks up the Sylvan track around Lake Sylvan and back to the Sylvan DoC campsite. Apart from the initial 650m climb, it is a moderate (I didn't find it too easy nor difficult) loop trail, and I made it in a 7 hour day. DoC rate it as an...
The Gillespie Pass Circuit
If you're looking for a fantastic multi day tramp with beautiful dense forest, mountains galore, wide valleys, rivers and a beautiful lake, then the 58Km Gillespie Pass Circuit in Mount Aspiring National Park might be for you. It begins close to Makarora, a small settlement an hours' drive to the North of Wanaka.
The Gillespie Pass circuit is a loop track. You can start just South of Makarora up the Wilkin river, or from a few Kms North of Makarora up...
Te Araroa Trail Greenstone Track
When I woke at 6.30am I listened to the light rain on my tent and thought about getting up.
I love being in my tent when it's raining, the downside being you have to pack a wet tent. I enjoyed cold overnight-soaked oats (my gas has to last 5 days) and a boost vitamin drink. The rain stopped momentarily so I made a snap decision, jumped up, threw everything out of the tent and packed up. The tent has to be packed first, so I quickly packed it then...