Invincible Mine Track, near Glenorchy NZ

The Invincible Mine Track passes through nice forest scenery and provides excellent views up the Rees Valley on its way to an old gold mining site.

The Invincible Mine Track is a good easy-to-moderate walk through beech forest and manuka trees to an old gold mine. There are excellent views up the Rees Valley from the mine. I originally chose this as a warm up walk before we hit the longer trails, and it served that purpose nicely.  Continue reading “Invincible Mine Track, near Glenorchy NZ”

Glenorchy Walkway, Glenorchy NZ

An easy circuit walk through a wetland near the town of Glenorchy, at the very picturesque northern end of Lake Wakatipu.

Glenorchy Walkway is a flat and relatively short circuit walk through a wetland near the town of Glenorchy, at the northern end of Lake Wakatipu. It’s a spectacular area, and this walk is a good option if you want to stretch your legs surrounded by many high mountains. The track is constructed the whole way, and entirely flat, so you don’t need any special gear. Continue reading “Glenorchy Walkway, Glenorchy NZ”

Wollangambe Track, Mt Wilson, Wollemi National Park NSW

Starting in the Upper Blue Mountains hamlet of Mt Wilson, the Wollangambe Track drops down through the ancient scenery of Wollemi National Park to the Wollangambe River.

This walk starts at the very small village of Mt Wilson located off Bells Line of Road in the Upper Blue Mountains. It enters the rather ancient landscape of Wollemi National Park, dropping down to the Wollangambe River, where you can do some canyoning (if that’s your thing). You return the same way, climbing back out of the valley. Continue reading “Wollangambe Track, Mt Wilson, Wollemi National Park NSW”

Isthmus Peak Track, Otago NZ

Two lakes for the price of one on the Isthmus Peak Track, with excellent views of both Lake Wanaka and Lake Hawea on this somewhat similar walk to the now super famous Roys Peak Track.

The Isthmus Peak Track is a much less crowded alternative to the now super famous Roys Peak Track, although I’ve heard it’s getting more popular. There are excellent views of both Lake Wanaka and Lake Hawea, and a good portion of the walk is on high ground in a conservation area. 

Continue reading “Isthmus Peak Track, Otago NZ”

Glacier Burn Track, near Glenorchy NZ

A pleasant walk through attractive beech forest to good views of a glacial valley and up to the Humboldt Mountains near Mt Bonpland.

The Glacier Burn Track crosses the Glacier Burn early on, and then climbs up through attractive beech forest to good views of a glacial valley and up to the Humboldt Mountains near Mt Bonpland. Continue reading “Glacier Burn Track, near Glenorchy NZ”

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park near Wanaka

Access to close up views of the spectacular Rob Roy Glacier for only moderate effort on this popular walk in Mt Aspiring National Park near Wanaka.

The Rob Roy Glacier Track was one of the first walks we did in New Zealand, and provides access to excellent views of the Roy Roy Glacier. There are impressive waterfalls along the way, as well as picturesque scenes in the West Matukituki Valley. The drive in is also nice, so there’s lots to recommend this walk. 

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
On the drive in.

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Matukituki River West Branch on the drive in.

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park

Nevertheless, friends who walked this with us in 2014 preferred the Routeburn Track to Flats Hut. But the views at the end of this walk are pretty spectacular, so I think it’s worth doing for those alone. It’s a fairly popular track so consider doing it on a weekday or out of season.  Track notes at the end.

Rob Roy Glacier Track: The Scenery

We did this walk in 2008, 2012 and 2014, so I’ve included pictures from each of those occasions. Don’t be confused by the apparent change of weather conditions.

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
The trusty Landcruiser at the start. Apparently there have been thefts at this car park, so they recommend you take your valuables with you.

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Crossing the Matukituki River West Branch.
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Matukituki River West Branch
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Matukituki River West Branch

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
We had friends with us in 2014.
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Sophia having a rest.
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
West Matukituki Valley.

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Some sense of scale in this shot.
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
A 261m drop on this waterfall.
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
The 261m high waterfall unofficially named Bridal Veil Falls. (A lot of waterfalls have that name it seems).
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Bridal Veil Falls (in 2008).
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Rob Roy Glacier
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
A close up of the glacier.
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Sophia backed by the glacier.

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Lots of waterfalls running off the glacier.
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
This kea looks like it is posing for a portrait painting.
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Kea close up.

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
I want what you’re having.
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Warm, lush colours.
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
Different colours in 2008.
Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
On the way back.

Track Notes

Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring National Park
An obvious track the whole way.

The DOC website has basic information on the walk. It’s about an hour from Wanaka, and over 2 hours from Queenstown. There’s a few streams to ford on the drive in so they recommend a four wheel drive if there’s been heavy rain (or maybe snow melt?).

Hamilton Island Circuit, Whitsunday Islands, Queensland

A circuit around Hamilton Island, taking in the high point, Passage Peak, where there are views over other islands in the Whitsundays archipelago.

I’m not usually one for tropical holidays but I really enjoyed a few days on Hamilton Island in the Whitsundays, back in 2014. Apart from lazing about in the hotel pool we did a shortish bushwalk around the island taking in a couple of beaches and the high point Passage Peak, where there are views over nearby islands.

There are a few track options which you can view on the Hamilton Island website. The walks are not very long but they could still be tiring in hot weather.

Hamilton Island Circuit: The Scenery

Hamilton Island Circuit
Looking back towards the resort.

Hamilton Island Circuit Hamilton Island Circuit Hamilton Island Circuit

Hamilton Island Circuit
From the high point of the island, Passage Peak (234m).

Hamilton Island Circuit Hamilton Island Circuit

Hamilton Island Circuit
One of the beaches we stopped at to have a swim. Didn’t realise at the time that the potentially deadly irukandji jelly fish may have been in these waters.

Hamilton Island Circuit

Hamilton Island Circuit
Mangroves

Hamilton Island Circuit
The lorikeets were so tame you could get photos like this just with a camera phone.

Duffers Saddle to the Old Woman Range, Central Otago NZ

Easy access to an arid alpine plateau on the Old Woman Range in Central Otago, with many tors & views of nearby mountains.

I realised the other day that I hadn’t posted all of my NZ walks to date. This is the walk I missed: A longish but mostly flat walk to the tops of the Old Woman Range, an arid alpine plateau near Cromwell in Central Otago. There were many tors along the way, and views of nearby mountains. Continue reading “Duffers Saddle to the Old Woman Range, Central Otago NZ”

Mutawintji National Park Circuit, NSW

There’s proper outback scenery on this circuit walk in Mutawintji National Park, about 160km outside of Broken Hill in far western NSW.

In 2009 we took a road trip to the Australian outback for the first time, stopping for a night each in Cobar and White Cliffs on our way to Broken Hill in far western NSW. Before we got to Broken Hill we stopped to do a walk in Mutawintji National Park. This was probably our first taste of proper outback scenery, (although we had done a walk in fairly arid woodland on our way from Cobar to Wilcannia). This circuit walk takes in many rocky sections in that red ochre colour the outback is famous for. Tree cover is sparse and the trees fairly stunted, and surrounding the area are flat arid plains.

Continue reading “Mutawintji National Park Circuit, NSW”

Ngiyampaa walking track, Mount Grenfell Historic Site, NSW

The Ngiyampaa walking track takes you through mallee woodland to a trig point on Mt Grenfell for views over this typically flat section of western NSW.

Not a bad walk if you are driving out west along the Barrier Highway from Sydney to Broken Hill, as we were in September 2009. The Ngiyampaa walking track climbs through mallee woodlands to a trig point on Mount Grenfell, for views over flat-as-a-pancake woodland for as far as the eye can see. Continue reading “Ngiyampaa walking track, Mount Grenfell Historic Site, NSW”