Fabulous views over Lake Wanaka are a highlight of this walk up Roys Peak. Just expect to be joined by a few hundred others in peak season!
Roys Peak has become a favourite destination for Instagrammers, attracted by the prospect of epic views over Lake Wanaka. The views are really excellent, but as a hike it can be lack lustre, as at least half of it is through unattractive pasture, and it’s along a vehicle trail the whole way. Still, on a clear day it’s worth joining the crowds of walkers making their way either to the summit, or else to that particular spot about two thirds of the way up where you get a picture of yourself or your friend backed by the best bit of Lake Wanaka.
I’ve done this walk three times in ten years, and I’ve seen the car park expand significantly during that time, but there were still people parking well up the road on the day I took these shots. Amongst the walkers are a good portion who have probably never set foot on a mountain before, some who play music out loud (you suck), people dressed in jeans, some wearing coats on the way up in the summer sun, and people carrying babies (respect).
All in all not the experience I look for in my hiking, but if you walk it out of season and maybe get up there early, then you might be able to enjoy the mountain with a few less people. And it was nice to see a variety of people enjoying the great outdoors.
No track notes required, but here’s a link to DOC info. There’s a 1200m height gain, although it’s a very steady ascent on a vehicle track.