Goat Hill via Barrack Creek Route, Arthur’s Pass NZ
Magnificent views on an adventurous route up through lush West Coast forest & along a rocky alpine ridge to Goat Hill (1656m) in Arthur’s Pass National Park near Otira.
This somewhat adventurous climb up the Barrack Creek Route to Goat Hill (1656m) was our first walk on the West Coast side of Arthur’s Pass National Park. The views are really spectacular, and include Mt Rolleston and numerous other peaks, the Otira River, Deception Valley, and the attractive Barrack Creek Valley. Also, the vegetation is different enough to add interest for someone used to the plants back east. The route is quite rough in sections, both through the forest and up towards the summit, and requires some scrambling. If you are okay with this then it will only add to the adventure. All in all a very satisfying day tramp that we’ll be sure to repeat. And you’ll probably have the place to yourself.
I recommend this walk in fine weather and when dry underfoot. Track notes at the end.
Goat Hill via Barrack Creek Route: The Scenery
The route starts at the side of the road just before the Otira River Bridge. You follow a grassy vehicle track through a fence and onto the bouldery Barrack Creek bed. Walk upstream for maybe 5 minutes or so and keep your eyes out for an orange marker on the northern side where you enter the forest. (There’s a scramble required just to get out of the creek bed).
It’s a sometimes steep & rough but nevertheless well marked track through the forest, then alpine scrub to the bushline. There is some scrambling required through the forest pretty much from the get go. And the track markers get less frequent in the heath vegetation higher up, but there are a few small cairns around and we never felt like we would lose the track. From the bushline you follow the increasingly rocky ridge with more scrambling to reach the summit.