Canterbury

Canterbury

Arthur's Pass to Rakaia River - OPEN

Northern Start
Greyneys Shelter, SH73
Southern End
Lake Coleridge Power Station, Hummocks Rd, Lake Coleridge Village
Distance
72km
Time
3-4 days
Track Standard
Road margin   Footpath   Easy tramping track   Tramping track   Route   Mixed grade  
Potential Hazards
  • Vehicles on road or track take care along SH73 and Harper Rd
  • Farming operations adjacent to Harper River
  • River crossings - Never cross flooded rivers
  • Track exposed to sun, wind or cold
  • Weather extremes
Description
(North to South)

Klondyke Track - 9km / 2-3hr

The Klondyke Track is a Te Araroa specific link. It reduces the road connection between the Deception-Mingha and Harper River Tracks. 

The track starts on SH73 at Greyneys Shelter Campsite and heads south, initially on the road shoulder but soon diverts to the Bealey River margin. This is from the left hand side of the road. The track then heads towards Klondyke Corner Campsite, a  basic campsite with a pavilion, carpark and toilets.
The track beyond Klondyke Corner remains on the true right bank of the Bealey River. There are occasional marker poles which lead to the Waimakariri River confluence. Cross the river, as water levels allow, and climb up to SH73 before the Bealey Spur settlement. If the Waimakariri is up, trampers are able to cross on the road bridge, about 1km to the west.
The Bealey Hotel, which is 12km east of Arthur’s Pass and 150km west of Christchurch is a good point where trampers can organize transport with most operators passing on their way to Arthur’s Pass or Christchurch.

From Bealey Spur, continue east on SH73 and follow the road's shoulder to  Cora Lynn Rd. Turn right here and walk past the Arthur’s Pass Wilderness Lodge and through the gate marked ‘Cass-Lagoon Track’. The track ends at the car park a short distance further along. Bealey Hut (6-bunks) is a five minute walk beyond the car park, up the track and on the right hand side.
 

Harper River Track

The initial section, to Hamilton Hut, is on DOC’s Cass Saddle–Lagoon Saddle Track and through Craigieburn Forest Park.The final portion of the track is adjacent to Glenthorne Station and finishes at Harper Rd. Here trampers are able to walk a route based on a paper road, which runs along the Harper River fringe. 


Cora Lynn Carpark to Hamilton Hut - 15.5km / 7-8hr

The track climbs a short distance from the carpark to Bealey Hut, a basic 6 bunk hut off on a short side trail to the right. Beyond the hut the track continues to climb through beech and exotic forest. It then traverses the broad north face of Mt Bruce, initially through forest but then through open tussock country. This is up towards Lagoon Saddle.
From the Saddle, follow board-walked sections down to the bushline. Lagoon Saddle A-Frame Shelter (2 ppl) is a short distance lower down. The track then descends to the Harper River. The next section down to West Harper Hut has numerous river crossings but these are straightforward in normal conditions.
West Harper Hut, with its dirt floor and canvas bunks, provides historical interest and welcome shelter in poor weather. Beyond the hut the route is an all weather one. The Harper River is crossed on a swing bridge. There is also a swingbridge across Hamilton Creek near Hamilton Hut.
 
Hamilton Hut to Harper Rd - 18km / 5-6hr

Return to the sign at the true left side of Hamilton Creek. From here Te Araroa heads down to the Harper River confluence, beyond which the track follows the Harper River downstream. For much of the way an old 4WD track can be used but this leads to numerous river crossings. If the river is high it is possible to remain on the true left all the way down to the Pinnacles without too much additional effort or time, EXCEPT for a spot where a ravine has formed that means a river crossing cannot be avoided. The river can pool adjacent to this point, so if the water is high, waiting it out or retreating to Hamilton Hut could be the wisest course of action.
The track remains within Craigieburn Forest Park until about a 3rd of the way down to the Pinnacles. It then enters Glenthorne Station on a route based on a paper road. This is along the fringe of the Harper River on the true left side. The Pinnacles become visible lower down across the river on the true right side.
Below the Pinnacles the track continues down the Harper River, which trampers need to ford to make further progress. The best place to do this is above the Avoca River confluence. The Avoca is in turn is crossed separately. Continue down the farm track to Harper Road and cross Harper River on the road bridge.
Harper Road reaches a junction near Harper Village where the Harper River Track ends. If you need somewhere to stay then there is a free overnight campsite on TrustPower owned land about 300m distant. This is down the road marked with the “2km to Lake Coleridge” sign. The campsite is sign-posted on the left hand side of this road. Water is available from a tap in the campsite and there is a modern longdrop toilet.

Note - it is 48km from Hamilton Hut to Lake Coleridge - only the fastest walkers should attempt to do this in a day. There are NO places to camp between Harper Village and Lake Coleridge so the recommended approach is to camp at the Harper Village campsite then go from there to Lake Coleridge in a day - plan to reach Lake Coleridge before 5pm to maximise your chances of hitching a lift out to Rakaia Gorge/Methven. There is NO budget accommodation, or camping spots, in/around Lake Coleridge Village so you'll need to walk to Lake Coleridge Village and hitch out that day if you don't plan to use the local accommodation.
 
For something different - Alps 2 Ocean offer the experience of an inflatable kayak from Harper Village to the trailhead at Glenrock on the south side of the Rakaia.

From Harper Village, travel 22km along Harper Rd past Lake Selfe, Lake Evelyn and over the Ryton River Road Bridge to the Homestead Rd junction. Take extreme care, this road has a 100km/h speed limit and drivers are often not expecting walkers. Wear hi-viz clothing/pack cover and don't use headphones. Stick to the extreme edge of the road. Turn right here and Te Araroa's next section, the Lake Hill Track, starts at the stile about 900m down on the right hand side of the road. 


Lake Hill Track - 3.5km / 1¼
hr

The Lake Hill Track provides access to a section of the Lake Coleridge foreshore and joins Homestead Rd with Coleridge Intake Rd. In the process it follows a narrow strip of public land which adjoins private property.

Walkers are asked to keep strictly to the marked route and to respect the property rights of the adjoining land owners. This includes giving way to stock and farm operations, and adhering to the ’no dogs, camping or fires’ conditions of access.
 
The track starts on Homestead Rd at a stile, which is 900m from the junction with Harper and Lyndon Roads. Travel is in the direction of Lake Coleridge and is initially easy and through farm land where stock are likely to be grazing.
After about 700m the marked route passes through a tussock section as it crosses a wetland fringe. Conditions may be damp underfoot here.
Beyond the wetland, the route joins the edge of a farm track then veers to the left on a foot track as it approaches the lake shore. There is a short climb and descent to avoid a bluff and then about half a kilometre of level lakeside walking before the foot track crosses another farm track.
From the far side of the farm track the marked route ascends away from the lake. After a short climb the gradient eases and the track continues to follow poles towards Coleridge-Intake Rd. On its way to the road the track joins and then departs from a farm track. Trampers need to be vigilant to follow the markers to ensure they stay on the legal route.
The track ends on Coleridge-Intake Rd at the stile next to the farm gate. This is about 1.3km below the intersection with Algidus Rd.

Walk south up Coleridge-Intake Rd (away from the lake) from the Lake Hill Track trailhead towards the Algidus Rd intersection. Continue through the intersection on Coleridge-Intake Rd. Beyond the cattle stop the road and surrounding land is owned by Trust Power. Continue on the road as it enters pine forest and veers to the right. This is a 3km walk.
 

Arboretum Track - 900m / 20min

The track starts on Coleridge Intake Rd on the Rakaia River side of the Algidus Rd intersection and on Trust Power owned land. This is on the right as Coleridge-Intake Rd makes its first hair pin turn to the left. Look out for markers here and a track that has been cut through broom.  This formed track quickly opens up and for a few metres follows the penstock pipes down towards the power station before turning left to enter pine forest.
Lower down the track leaves the forest, turns right, and descends directly through open country. It enters the Arboretum at a gate on the left and follows a well formed path passing a number of sign posted specimen trees along the way. The track end is through the memorial gate marking the exit from the Arboretum to Hummocks Rd. 

The Arboretum comprises a site of approximately 2ha and was established from 1933 by Harry Hart, who served as superintendent of the Lake Coleridge Power Station for 30 years until 1954. It now contains one of New Zealand’s best mature conifer collections including examples of at least two thirds of the world’s pine species.
Click HERE for an information poster about the Lake Coleridge area.
Lake Coleridge Lodge can be found a short distance down Hummocks Rd on the left. With a spa and sauna the Lodge offers some luxury for walkers with good quality dinner, bed, and breakfast packages or alternatively a guest kitchen. Free wifi internet, supply package storage and laundry are offered to Te Araroa guests. Transport between the Lodge, Methven and the Clent Hills Track on the south side of the Rakaia River can be booked for an additional charge. For more information visit their website -www.lakecoleridgelodge.co.nz/activities/te-araroa-national-walkway
To get around the Rakaia River, turn left on Coleridge Rd, then right on ZigZag Rd to Rakaia Gorge (24km from Lake Coleridge).
Across the second bridge is Rakaia Gorge Campground.
Otherwise continue on Coleridge Rd and turn right at SH72, then turn left at SH77 for the town of Methven (40.5km from Lake Coleridge).

 

Note: Map is indicative only
Extra Info

Accommodation en route

The Bealey Hotel - SH 73 12858 West Coast Rd, Arthur's Pass - P: 03 318 9277 - which is 12 km east of Arthur’s Pass and 150 km west of Christchurch, offers backpacker and motel type accommodation, a restaurant and bar. Trampers can organize transport from here with most operators passing on their way to Arthur’s Pass or Christchurch.
Arthurs Pass Eco Lodge - Host Helen Nugteren - P: 027 675 1511 - E: helen@arthurspassecolodge.co.nz - Located on the end of Bealey Spur - run by Helen Nugteren who is also a keen tramper and often joins walkers out on Te Araroa. The Lodge offers bed and breakfast, delicious dinners and packed lunches on request. Bookings essential
DOC Bealey Hut - 6 bunks - is a five minute walk beyond the car park at Cora Lynn Rd, up the track and on the right hand side 
DOC Hamilton Hut - (20 bunks) -  a modern 20 bunk hut complete with wood stove and radio link through to the Arthur’s Pass Visitors Centre.
Harper River Campsite - P: Tel: 03 318 5700 - E: helen.stanger@trustpower.co.nz - campsite close to the shore of Lake Coleridge is available near the tiny settlement of Harper Village at the inland head of the lake. To find it, drive through Harper Village and over the bridge across the Harper Canal, then turn left down towards the lake. You’ll find the campsite down this road on the left. The sheltered campsite includes tap water (untreated well water) and an environmental toilet, but with no other services in Harper Village users need to be self-sufficient.
 
Accommodation at Lake Coleridge - click HERE for an information poster about the Lake Coleridge area
Lake Coleridge Lodge can be found a short distance down Hummocks Rd on the left. With a spa and sauna the Lodge offers some luxury for walkers with good quality dinner, bed, and breakfast packages or alternatively a guest kitchen. Free wifi internet, supply package storage and laundry are offered to Te Araroa guests. Transport between the Lodge, Methven and the Clent Hills Track on the south side of the Rakaia River can be booked for an additional charge. For more information visit their website - www.lakecoleridgelodge.co.nz/activities/te-araroa-national-walkway
The only other accommodation in the village is a B&B - http://www.lakecoleridgenz.info/listing.php?id=70&l=lake_coleridge_village_homestay - bookings essential.  
Note: There is no camping near Lake Coleridge Village. The only official campgrounds in the Lake Coleridge area are at Harper Village (free) and Rakaia Gorge (small charge). There are no areas where Freedom Camping is legally permitted between these two campgrounds and with increasing numbers of walkers enjoying Te Araroa, landowners are becoming more likely to move people on who are camping illegally. If you are solely camping you need to plan your journey to use the official campgrounds. 
 
Rakaia Gorge Society Camping Ground - 6686 Arundel Rakaia Gorge Rd - P: 03 302 9353 - The campground has tent sites, a sheltered cooking area, showers, toilets and water.

Methven

General information
Methven I-SITE Visitors Centre - 160 Main St, Methven - P: 03 302 8955 - E: methven@i-site.org
 
Getting there/away
Methven Travel - 93 Main St , Methven- P: 0800 684 888 for shuttles to/from Christchurch
 
Accommodation
Mt Hutt Bunkhouse and Cottage BBH - 8 Lambard St, Methven - P: 03 302 9122 or 0273 464 968                                                      
Alpenhorn Chalet, 44 Allen St, Methven - P: 03 3028779 - E: info@alpenhorn.co.nz 
Methven Lodge and B&B, 182 Main St, Methven - P: 03 3029047 - E: info@methvenlodge.co.nz
Snow Denn Lodge
, 6 Bank St, Methven - P: 03 3028999 - E: info@snowdenn.co.nz - special Te Araroa rate $20 dorm rooms and 10% off private rooms
 
Resupply
Topnotch Four Square Supermarket -  33/37 McMillian St, Methven - P: 03 302 8114
Supervalue Supermarket - The Mall, Methven P: 03 302 8050
 

 

Requirements
  • Keep to the track
  • Respect private land please do not attempt to enter the Glenthorne Station farming areas
  • No litter
  • No dogs
  • No horses
  • No firearms
  • No bikes
  • Wear hi-viz clothing/pack cover and don't use headphones
Environment
  • Take all rubbish with you
  • Use toilets provided at huts
  • Bury toilet waste well away from water
  • Conservation Area - No domestic animals allowed (i.e. includes dogs, cats or birds)
Amenities
(Start)
  • Full range of amenities (limited) at Arthur's Pass
  • Car park
  • Toilets
  • Shop at Arthur's Pass
  • Accommodation at Bealey Hut a short distance up the track
Amenities
(On Route)
  • No amenities
  • Basic camp site at Harper Village
  • Accommodation Huts
Amenities
(End)
  • No amenities
  • Carpark
  • Picnic area
  • Toilets
Closest Town(s)
Arthur's Pass
Managed by
DOC
Contact
DOC
Northern Start
Greyneys Shelter, SH73
Southern End
Lake Coleridge Power Station, Hummocks Rd, Lake Coleridge Village
Distance
72km
Time
3-4 days
Track Standard
Road margin   Footpath   Easy tramping track   Tramping track   Route   Mixed grade  
Description
(North to South)

Klondyke Track - 9km / 2-3hr

The Klondyke Track is a Te Araroa specific link. It reduces the road connection between the Deception-Mingha and Harper River Tracks. 

The track starts on SH73 at Greyneys Shelter Campsite and heads south, initially on the road shoulder but soon diverts to the Bealey River margin. This is from the left hand side of the road. The track then heads towards Klondyke Corner Campsite, a  basic campsite with a pavilion, carpark and toilets.
The track beyond Klondyke Corner remains on the true right bank of the Bealey River. There are occasional marker poles which lead to the Waimakariri River confluence. Cross the river, as water levels allow, and climb up to SH73 before the Bealey Spur settlement. If the Waimakariri is up, trampers are able to cross on the road bridge, about 1km to the west.
The Bealey Hotel, which is 12km east of Arthur’s Pass and 150km west of Christchurch is a good point where trampers can organize transport with most operators passing on their way to Arthur’s Pass or Christchurch.

From Bealey Spur, continue east on SH73 and follow the road's shoulder to  Cora Lynn Rd. Turn right here and walk past the Arthur’s Pass Wilderness Lodge and through the gate marked ‘Cass-Lagoon Track’. The track ends at the car park a short distance further along. Bealey Hut (6-bunks) is a five minute walk beyond the car park, up the track and on the right hand side.
 

Harper River Track

The initial section, to Hamilton Hut, is on DOC’s Cass Saddle–Lagoon Saddle Track and through Craigieburn Forest Park.The final portion of the track is adjacent to Glenthorne Station and finishes at Harper Rd. Here trampers are able to walk a route based on a paper road, which runs along the Harper River fringe. 


Cora Lynn Carpark to Hamilton Hut - 15.5km / 7-8hr

The track climbs a short distance from the carpark to Bealey Hut, a basic 6 bunk hut off on a short side trail to the right. Beyond the hut the track continues to climb through beech and exotic forest. It then traverses the broad north face of Mt Bruce, initially through forest but then through open tussock country. This is up towards Lagoon Saddle.
From the Saddle, follow board-walked sections down to the bushline. Lagoon Saddle A-Frame Shelter (2 ppl) is a short distance lower down. The track then descends to the Harper River. The next section down to West Harper Hut has numerous river crossings but these are straightforward in normal conditions.
West Harper Hut, with its dirt floor and canvas bunks, provides historical interest and welcome shelter in poor weather. Beyond the hut the route is an all weather one. The Harper River is crossed on a swing bridge. There is also a swingbridge across Hamilton Creek near Hamilton Hut.
 
Hamilton Hut to Harper Rd - 18km / 5-6hr

Return to the sign at the true left side of Hamilton Creek. From here Te Araroa heads down to the Harper River confluence, beyond which the track follows the Harper River downstream. For much of the way an old 4WD track can be used but this leads to numerous river crossings. If the river is high it is possible to remain on the true left all the way down to the Pinnacles without too much additional effort or time, EXCEPT for a spot where a ravine has formed that means a river crossing cannot be avoided. The river can pool adjacent to this point, so if the water is high, waiting it out or retreating to Hamilton Hut could be the wisest course of action.
The track remains within Craigieburn Forest Park until about a 3rd of the way down to the Pinnacles. It then enters Glenthorne Station on a route based on a paper road. This is along the fringe of the Harper River on the true left side. The Pinnacles become visible lower down across the river on the true right side.
Below the Pinnacles the track continues down the Harper River, which trampers need to ford to make further progress. The best place to do this is above the Avoca River confluence. The Avoca is in turn is crossed separately. Continue down the farm track to Harper Road and cross Harper River on the road bridge.
Harper Road reaches a junction near Harper Village where the Harper River Track ends. If you need somewhere to stay then there is a free overnight campsite on TrustPower owned land about 300m distant. This is down the road marked with the “2km to Lake Coleridge” sign. The campsite is sign-posted on the left hand side of this road. Water is available from a tap in the campsite and there is a modern longdrop toilet.

Note - it is 48km from Hamilton Hut to Lake Coleridge - only the fastest walkers should attempt to do this in a day. There are NO places to camp between Harper Village and Lake Coleridge so the recommended approach is to camp at the Harper Village campsite then go from there to Lake Coleridge in a day - plan to reach Lake Coleridge before 5pm to maximise your chances of hitching a lift out to Rakaia Gorge/Methven. There is NO budget accommodation, or camping spots, in/around Lake Coleridge Village so you'll need to walk to Lake Coleridge Village and hitch out that day if you don't plan to use the local accommodation.
 
For something different - Alps 2 Ocean offer the experience of an inflatable kayak from Harper Village to the trailhead at Glenrock on the south side of the Rakaia.

From Harper Village, travel 22km along Harper Rd past Lake Selfe, Lake Evelyn and over the Ryton River Road Bridge to the Homestead Rd junction. Take extreme care, this road has a 100km/h speed limit and drivers are often not expecting walkers. Wear hi-viz clothing/pack cover and don't use headphones. Stick to the extreme edge of the road. Turn right here and Te Araroa's next section, the Lake Hill Track, starts at the stile about 900m down on the right hand side of the road. 


Lake Hill Track - 3.5km / 1¼
hr

The Lake Hill Track provides access to a section of the Lake Coleridge foreshore and joins Homestead Rd with Coleridge Intake Rd. In the process it follows a narrow strip of public land which adjoins private property.

Walkers are asked to keep strictly to the marked route and to respect the property rights of the adjoining land owners. This includes giving way to stock and farm operations, and adhering to the ’no dogs, camping or fires’ conditions of access.
 
The track starts on Homestead Rd at a stile, which is 900m from the junction with Harper and Lyndon Roads. Travel is in the direction of Lake Coleridge and is initially easy and through farm land where stock are likely to be grazing.
After about 700m the marked route passes through a tussock section as it crosses a wetland fringe. Conditions may be damp underfoot here.
Beyond the wetland, the route joins the edge of a farm track then veers to the left on a foot track as it approaches the lake shore. There is a short climb and descent to avoid a bluff and then about half a kilometre of level lakeside walking before the foot track crosses another farm track.
From the far side of the farm track the marked route ascends away from the lake. After a short climb the gradient eases and the track continues to follow poles towards Coleridge-Intake Rd. On its way to the road the track joins and then departs from a farm track. Trampers need to be vigilant to follow the markers to ensure they stay on the legal route.
The track ends on Coleridge-Intake Rd at the stile next to the farm gate. This is about 1.3km below the intersection with Algidus Rd.

Walk south up Coleridge-Intake Rd (away from the lake) from the Lake Hill Track trailhead towards the Algidus Rd intersection. Continue through the intersection on Coleridge-Intake Rd. Beyond the cattle stop the road and surrounding land is owned by Trust Power. Continue on the road as it enters pine forest and veers to the right. This is a 3km walk.
 

Arboretum Track - 900m / 20min

The track starts on Coleridge Intake Rd on the Rakaia River side of the Algidus Rd intersection and on Trust Power owned land. This is on the right as Coleridge-Intake Rd makes its first hair pin turn to the left. Look out for markers here and a track that has been cut through broom.  This formed track quickly opens up and for a few metres follows the penstock pipes down towards the power station before turning left to enter pine forest.
Lower down the track leaves the forest, turns right, and descends directly through open country. It enters the Arboretum at a gate on the left and follows a well formed path passing a number of sign posted specimen trees along the way. The track end is through the memorial gate marking the exit from the Arboretum to Hummocks Rd. 

The Arboretum comprises a site of approximately 2ha and was established from 1933 by Harry Hart, who served as superintendent of the Lake Coleridge Power Station for 30 years until 1954. It now contains one of New Zealand’s best mature conifer collections including examples of at least two thirds of the world’s pine species.
Click HERE for an information poster about the Lake Coleridge area.
Lake Coleridge Lodge can be found a short distance down Hummocks Rd on the left. With a spa and sauna the Lodge offers some luxury for walkers with good quality dinner, bed, and breakfast packages or alternatively a guest kitchen. Free wifi internet, supply package storage and laundry are offered to Te Araroa guests. Transport between the Lodge, Methven and the Clent Hills Track on the south side of the Rakaia River can be booked for an additional charge. For more information visit their website -www.lakecoleridgelodge.co.nz/activities/te-araroa-national-walkway
To get around the Rakaia River, turn left on Coleridge Rd, then right on ZigZag Rd to Rakaia Gorge (24km from Lake Coleridge).
Across the second bridge is Rakaia Gorge Campground.
Otherwise continue on Coleridge Rd and turn right at SH72, then turn left at SH77 for the town of Methven (40.5km from Lake Coleridge).

 

Potential Hazards
  • Vehicles on road or track take care along SH73 and Harper Rd
  • Farming operations adjacent to Harper River
  • River crossings - Never cross flooded rivers
  • Track exposed to sun, wind or cold
  • Weather extremes
Description
(North to South)

Klondyke Track - 9km / 2-3hr

The Klondyke Track is a Te Araroa specific link. It reduces the road connection between the Deception-Mingha and Harper River Tracks. 

The track starts on SH73 at Greyneys Shelter Campsite and heads south, initially on the road shoulder but soon diverts to the Bealey River margin. This is from the left hand side of the road. The track then heads towards Klondyke Corner Campsite, a  basic campsite with a pavilion, carpark and toilets.
The track beyond Klondyke Corner remains on the true right bank of the Bealey River. There are occasional marker poles which lead to the Waimakariri River confluence. Cross the river, as water levels allow, and climb up to SH73 before the Bealey Spur settlement. If the Waimakariri is up, trampers are able to cross on the road bridge, about 1km to the west.
The Bealey Hotel, which is 12km east of Arthur’s Pass and 150km west of Christchurch is a good point where trampers can organize transport with most operators passing on their way to Arthur’s Pass or Christchurch.

From Bealey Spur, continue east on SH73 and follow the road's shoulder to  Cora Lynn Rd. Turn right here and walk past the Arthur’s Pass Wilderness Lodge and through the gate marked ‘Cass-Lagoon Track’. The track ends at the car park a short distance further along. Bealey Hut (6-bunks) is a five minute walk beyond the car park, up the track and on the right hand side.
 

Harper River Track

The initial section, to Hamilton Hut, is on DOC’s Cass Saddle–Lagoon Saddle Track and through Craigieburn Forest Park.The final portion of the track is adjacent to Glenthorne Station and finishes at Harper Rd. Here trampers are able to walk a route based on a paper road, which runs along the Harper River fringe. 


Cora Lynn Carpark to Hamilton Hut - 15.5km / 7-8hr

The track climbs a short distance from the carpark to Bealey Hut, a basic 6 bunk hut off on a short side trail to the right. Beyond the hut the track continues to climb through beech and exotic forest. It then traverses the broad north face of Mt Bruce, initially through forest but then through open tussock country. This is up towards Lagoon Saddle.
From the Saddle, follow board-walked sections down to the bushline. Lagoon Saddle A-Frame Shelter (2 ppl) is a short distance lower down. The track then descends to the Harper River. The next section down to West Harper Hut has numerous river crossings but these are straightforward in normal conditions.
West Harper Hut, with its dirt floor and canvas bunks, provides historical interest and welcome shelter in poor weather. Beyond the hut the route is an all weather one. The Harper River is crossed on a swing bridge. There is also a swingbridge across Hamilton Creek near Hamilton Hut.
 
Hamilton Hut to Harper Rd - 18km / 5-6hr

Return to the sign at the true left side of Hamilton Creek. From here Te Araroa heads down to the Harper River confluence, beyond which the track follows the Harper River downstream. For much of the way an old 4WD track can be used but this leads to numerous river crossings. If the river is high it is possible to remain on the true left all the way down to the Pinnacles without too much additional effort or time, EXCEPT for a spot where a ravine has formed that means a river crossing cannot be avoided. The river can pool adjacent to this point, so if the water is high, waiting it out or retreating to Hamilton Hut could be the wisest course of action.
The track remains within Craigieburn Forest Park until about a 3rd of the way down to the Pinnacles. It then enters Glenthorne Station on a route based on a paper road. This is along the fringe of the Harper River on the true left side. The Pinnacles become visible lower down across the river on the true right side.
Below the Pinnacles the track continues down the Harper River, which trampers need to ford to make further progress. The best place to do this is above the Avoca River confluence. The Avoca is in turn is crossed separately. Continue down the farm track to Harper Road and cross Harper River on the road bridge.
Harper Road reaches a junction near Harper Village where the Harper River Track ends. If you need somewhere to stay then there is a free overnight campsite on TrustPower owned land about 300m distant. This is down the road marked with the “2km to Lake Coleridge” sign. The campsite is sign-posted on the left hand side of this road. Water is available from a tap in the campsite and there is a modern longdrop toilet.

Note - it is 48km from Hamilton Hut to Lake Coleridge - only the fastest walkers should attempt to do this in a day. There are NO places to camp between Harper Village and Lake Coleridge so the recommended approach is to camp at the Harper Village campsite then go from there to Lake Coleridge in a day - plan to reach Lake Coleridge before 5pm to maximise your chances of hitching a lift out to Rakaia Gorge/Methven. There is NO budget accommodation, or camping spots, in/around Lake Coleridge Village so you'll need to walk to Lake Coleridge Village and hitch out that day if you don't plan to use the local accommodation.
 
For something different - Alps 2 Ocean offer the experience of an inflatable kayak from Harper Village to the trailhead at Glenrock on the south side of the Rakaia.

From Harper Village, travel 22km along Harper Rd past Lake Selfe, Lake Evelyn and over the Ryton River Road Bridge to the Homestead Rd junction. Take extreme care, this road has a 100km/h speed limit and drivers are often not expecting walkers. Wear hi-viz clothing/pack cover and don't use headphones. Stick to the extreme edge of the road. Turn right here and Te Araroa's next section, the Lake Hill Track, starts at the stile about 900m down on the right hand side of the road. 


Lake Hill Track - 3.5km / 1¼
hr

The Lake Hill Track provides access to a section of the Lake Coleridge foreshore and joins Homestead Rd with Coleridge Intake Rd. In the process it follows a narrow strip of public land which adjoins private property.

Walkers are asked to keep strictly to the marked route and to respect the property rights of the adjoining land owners. This includes giving way to stock and farm operations, and adhering to the ’no dogs, camping or fires’ conditions of access.
 
The track starts on Homestead Rd at a stile, which is 900m from the junction with Harper and Lyndon Roads. Travel is in the direction of Lake Coleridge and is initially easy and through farm land where stock are likely to be grazing.
After about 700m the marked route passes through a tussock section as it crosses a wetland fringe. Conditions may be damp underfoot here.
Beyond the wetland, the route joins the edge of a farm track then veers to the left on a foot track as it approaches the lake shore. There is a short climb and descent to avoid a bluff and then about half a kilometre of level lakeside walking before the foot track crosses another farm track.
From the far side of the farm track the marked route ascends away from the lake. After a short climb the gradient eases and the track continues to follow poles towards Coleridge-Intake Rd. On its way to the road the track joins and then departs from a farm track. Trampers need to be vigilant to follow the markers to ensure they stay on the legal route.
The track ends on Coleridge-Intake Rd at the stile next to the farm gate. This is about 1.3km below the intersection with Algidus Rd.

Walk south up Coleridge-Intake Rd (away from the lake) from the Lake Hill Track trailhead towards the Algidus Rd intersection. Continue through the intersection on Coleridge-Intake Rd. Beyond the cattle stop the road and surrounding land is owned by Trust Power. Continue on the road as it enters pine forest and veers to the right. This is a 3km walk.
 

Arboretum Track - 900m / 20min

The track starts on Coleridge Intake Rd on the Rakaia River side of the Algidus Rd intersection and on Trust Power owned land. This is on the right as Coleridge-Intake Rd makes its first hair pin turn to the left. Look out for markers here and a track that has been cut through broom.  This formed track quickly opens up and for a few metres follows the penstock pipes down towards the power station before turning left to enter pine forest.
Lower down the track leaves the forest, turns right, and descends directly through open country. It enters the Arboretum at a gate on the left and follows a well formed path passing a number of sign posted specimen trees along the way. The track end is through the memorial gate marking the exit from the Arboretum to Hummocks Rd. 

The Arboretum comprises a site of approximately 2ha and was established from 1933 by Harry Hart, who served as superintendent of the Lake Coleridge Power Station for 30 years until 1954. It now contains one of New Zealand’s best mature conifer collections including examples of at least two thirds of the world’s pine species.
Click HERE for an information poster about the Lake Coleridge area.
Lake Coleridge Lodge can be found a short distance down Hummocks Rd on the left. With a spa and sauna the Lodge offers some luxury for walkers with good quality dinner, bed, and breakfast packages or alternatively a guest kitchen. Free wifi internet, supply package storage and laundry are offered to Te Araroa guests. Transport between the Lodge, Methven and the Clent Hills Track on the south side of the Rakaia River can be booked for an additional charge. For more information visit their website -www.lakecoleridgelodge.co.nz/activities/te-araroa-national-walkway
To get around the Rakaia River, turn left on Coleridge Rd, then right on ZigZag Rd to Rakaia Gorge (24km from Lake Coleridge).
Across the second bridge is Rakaia Gorge Campground.
Otherwise continue on Coleridge Rd and turn right at SH72, then turn left at SH77 for the town of Methven (40.5km from Lake Coleridge).

 

Note: Map is indicative only
Extra Info

Accommodation en route

The Bealey Hotel - SH 73 12858 West Coast Rd, Arthur's Pass - P: 03 318 9277 - which is 12 km east of Arthur’s Pass and 150 km west of Christchurch, offers backpacker and motel type accommodation, a restaurant and bar. Trampers can organize transport from here with most operators passing on their way to Arthur’s Pass or Christchurch.
Arthurs Pass Eco Lodge - Host Helen Nugteren - P: 027 675 1511 - E: helen@arthurspassecolodge.co.nz - Located on the end of Bealey Spur - run by Helen Nugteren who is also a keen tramper and often joins walkers out on Te Araroa. The Lodge offers bed and breakfast, delicious dinners and packed lunches on request. Bookings essential
DOC Bealey Hut - 6 bunks - is a five minute walk beyond the car park at Cora Lynn Rd, up the track and on the right hand side 
DOC Hamilton Hut - (20 bunks) -  a modern 20 bunk hut complete with wood stove and radio link through to the Arthur’s Pass Visitors Centre.
Harper River Campsite - P: Tel: 03 318 5700 - E: helen.stanger@trustpower.co.nz - campsite close to the shore of Lake Coleridge is available near the tiny settlement of Harper Village at the inland head of the lake. To find it, drive through Harper Village and over the bridge across the Harper Canal, then turn left down towards the lake. You’ll find the campsite down this road on the left. The sheltered campsite includes tap water (untreated well water) and an environmental toilet, but with no other services in Harper Village users need to be self-sufficient.
 
Accommodation at Lake Coleridge - click HERE for an information poster about the Lake Coleridge area
Lake Coleridge Lodge can be found a short distance down Hummocks Rd on the left. With a spa and sauna the Lodge offers some luxury for walkers with good quality dinner, bed, and breakfast packages or alternatively a guest kitchen. Free wifi internet, supply package storage and laundry are offered to Te Araroa guests. Transport between the Lodge, Methven and the Clent Hills Track on the south side of the Rakaia River can be booked for an additional charge. For more information visit their website - www.lakecoleridgelodge.co.nz/activities/te-araroa-national-walkway
The only other accommodation in the village is a B&B - http://www.lakecoleridgenz.info/listing.php?id=70&l=lake_coleridge_village_homestay - bookings essential.  
Note: There is no camping near Lake Coleridge Village. The only official campgrounds in the Lake Coleridge area are at Harper Village (free) and Rakaia Gorge (small charge). There are no areas where Freedom Camping is legally permitted between these two campgrounds and with increasing numbers of walkers enjoying Te Araroa, landowners are becoming more likely to move people on who are camping illegally. If you are solely camping you need to plan your journey to use the official campgrounds. 
 
Rakaia Gorge Society Camping Ground - 6686 Arundel Rakaia Gorge Rd - P: 03 302 9353 - The campground has tent sites, a sheltered cooking area, showers, toilets and water.

Methven

General information
Methven I-SITE Visitors Centre - 160 Main St, Methven - P: 03 302 8955 - E: methven@i-site.org
 
Getting there/away
Methven Travel - 93 Main St , Methven- P: 0800 684 888 for shuttles to/from Christchurch
 
Accommodation
Mt Hutt Bunkhouse and Cottage BBH - 8 Lambard St, Methven - P: 03 302 9122 or 0273 464 968                                                      
Alpenhorn Chalet, 44 Allen St, Methven - P: 03 3028779 - E: info@alpenhorn.co.nz 
Methven Lodge and B&B, 182 Main St, Methven - P: 03 3029047 - E: info@methvenlodge.co.nz
Snow Denn Lodge
, 6 Bank St, Methven - P: 03 3028999 - E: info@snowdenn.co.nz - special Te Araroa rate $20 dorm rooms and 10% off private rooms
 
Resupply
Topnotch Four Square Supermarket -  33/37 McMillian St, Methven - P: 03 302 8114
Supervalue Supermarket - The Mall, Methven P: 03 302 8050
 

 

Requirements
  • Keep to the track
  • Respect private land please do not attempt to enter the Glenthorne Station farming areas
  • No litter
  • No dogs
  • No horses
  • No firearms
  • No bikes
  • Wear hi-viz clothing/pack cover and don't use headphones
Environment
  • Take all rubbish with you
  • Use toilets provided at huts
  • Bury toilet waste well away from water
  • Conservation Area - No domestic animals allowed (i.e. includes dogs, cats or birds)
Amenities
(Start)
  • Full range of amenities (limited) at Arthur's Pass
  • Car park
  • Toilets
  • Shop at Arthur's Pass
  • Accommodation at Bealey Hut a short distance up the track
Amenities
(On Route)
  • No amenities
  • Basic camp site at Harper Village
  • Accommodation Huts
Amenities
(End)
  • No amenities
  • Carpark
  • Picnic area
  • Toilets
Closest Town(s)
Arthur's Pass
Managed by
DOC
Contact
DOC