Location: On the Caples track, starting at the Glenorchy end, from Lake Wakatipu.
Access: Fairly flat, but varying sorts of tracks – we made up a lot of “We’re going on a bear hunt” with the various things we saw – “uh-oh, rocks …” It took us 5 hours to walk in as he’d been so buzzing with excitement the night before he went to sleep far too late so wasn’t as switched on as he should have been when it came to foot placement etc so had a few stumbles and was cautious, but he carried his own pack (all his gear minus his sleeping bag) pretty much the whole 9km!
Hut: The hut was fantastic and we were very surprised to find that despite it being the best weather in AGES and being on the Te Araroa Trail, there were only 5 others there (only 2 when we arrived, despite me hurrying him along all day to ensure we got a bed!). There is a warden and flush toilets, loads of space, two bunkrooms. Can’t comment on the fireplace as we didn’t need to use it. 24 bunks, serviced hut (adults $15, youth, $7.50).
Good to note: We did the walk out in about 4 hours, as we simply couldn’t stop as when we did we were swarmed by sandflies – that would be the only downside to the trip. Take a good repellent!! (Ed: on Te Araroa so more likely to be busy during TA season).
Visited by: Lisa Desiree Geerlofs Grace and son in Jan 2020.