Length: from 6.0 up to 8.0 days
Distance: 92.0 km (44.3 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Moderate terrain
Altitude: 311m to 1610m. Gain: 4386m. Loss: 3924m . Gradient: 5 deg (Moderate)
Skills: Occasional scrambles (3/7) - Occasional rivers (3/6)


Distance: 0.7 km (0.3 DOC hours) - Surfaced walkway - Easy terrain
Altitude: 327m to 363m. Gain: 18m. Loss: 36m . Gradient: 5 deg (Flat)
Skills:
GPX info source: Drawn on map

A short nature walk that leads from the busy Blue Pools car park down to the Makarora Rver and crosses on a swing bridge. A signpost points northwestwards for the Blue River Track and southwest for the Blue Pools and the Blue-Young Link Track. Can be busy with tourists.

Created by: Yarmoss on 2015-07-27. Experienced: 2010-01-22

Distance: 5.3 km (1.5 DOC hours) - Benched track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 311m to 415m. Gain: 143m. Loss: 174m . Gradient: 3 deg (Gentle)
Skills:
GPX info source: Drawn on map

A good quality track built in about 2009 runs down the true right of the Makarora from the Blue Pools to the Young River. After pushing your way through the tourists on the Blue Pools Bridge follow the track down through bush and then across the edge of the Rainy Flats.Its on down through bush to climb up and over a small hill to reach the start of the Young Track where in 2010 there was a small shelter and a radio for contacting the Wilkin River jet boat company.

Created by: Yarmoss on 2015-07-27. Experienced: 2010-01-22

Distance: 9.4 km (4.0 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 314m to 432m. Gain: 206m. Loss: 114m . Gradient: 2 deg (Gentle)
Skills: - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

A good quality track heads up the true left of the Young through bush and grass flats to the Young North branch. A bridge across the north branch is nearly a kilometer upstream, under normal flows to save time you can ford the north branch from the flats and connect with the track on the other side. The camp site is a short distance up the true right of the north branch.

Note: few if any of the side streams are bridged. Under normal conditions they are fine to cross but usually involve wet boots. They could prove problematic after rain.

Created by: Yarmoss on 2015-07-27. Experienced: 2010-02-24

From Young North Branch Camp Site to Young Hut via Young Track
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Distance: 5.7 km (3.0 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 397m to 731m. Gain: 374m. Loss: 49m . Gradient: 4 deg (Moderate)
Skills: - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

From the swing bridge follow the track down to the south branch of the Young and climb up the hill. The track crosses a semi active slip where care is requited, and then climb up above a gorge. Its on through bush and over a large wooden bridge across Stag Creek to eventually reach Young Hut. Some flats on the opposite side of the river on the way to the hut look like they would make nice camp spots if the hut is full and conditions are good.

Created by: Yarmoss on 2015-07-27. Experienced: 2010-02-24

From Young Hut to Siberia Hut via Gillespie Pass
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Distance: 10.7 km (7.0 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Moderate terrain
Altitude: 618m to 1610m. Gain: 919m. Loss: 1030m . Gradient: 11 deg (Moderate)
Skills: Alpine weather (2/7) - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

From Young Hut follow the track as it climbs relentlessly up through bush and then alpine scrub to reach the upper flats in the valley head. Cross on the foot bridge and follow markers up to where the markers begin the steep 500m climb to Point 1574. As you can see from the map the track doesn't actually cross Gillespie Pass proper anymore (it used to). There's a fantastic view from Point 1574. The track then climbs even high up onto Peak 1629 before beginning the long knee jangling descent down into Gillespie Stream. There's usually snow patches up here into April although with the foot traffic the Gillespie Pass Circuit gets there's always a good trail across them. Down by Gillespie Stream there are small flats with good sheltered camp spots. The track carries on down above a gorge and then drops down zig zags through bush to the extensive flats of the Siberia Stream. Follow markers and the obvious ground trail though knee high grass down valley to eventually reach the Siberia Hut.

The route as described here takes about 7 hours. Fit parties can save a day over the whole Gillespie Pass Circuit by going up to Crucible Lake on the same day as crossing Gillespie Pass. Doing this adds about 3 hours making for a 10+ hour day if you are travelling right down to Siberia Hut. If you do this then I suggest carrying a tent as during the busy summer months Siberia Hut will almost certainly be full to over capacity by the time you get there. There is good camping outside the hut, but the whole Siberia is great for camping in. Camping up in the Crucible Lake valley is not permitted.

Created by: Yarmoss on 2015-07-27. Experienced: 2010-02-25

From Siberia Hut to Crucible Lake via Crucible Track
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Distance: 6.7 km (2.0 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 623m to 1166m. Gain: 562m. Loss: 29m . Gradient: 5 deg (Moderate)
Skills: Alpine weather (2/7) - Occasional rivers (3/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Follow a well posted and obvious ground trail up the Siberia Valley through often knee high grass. A sign post near the Gillespie Stream points the way to Crucible Lake. The Siberia needs to be forded a a few hundred metres further on which is impassible after rain. Cross to the valley edge where markers climb very steeply up beside the Crucible Stream. The going levels off and its on through bush until the Crucible Stream needs to be forded. This is a surprisingly difficult crossing for a little stream and is probably impassible after rain. Once across to the true right the bush is quickly cleared and its up valley through mixed scrub to climb the moraine to reach Crucible Lake. Its well worth taking the time to walk along the moraine to view the lake from different angles. The lake often holds ice bergs until into autumn.

Created by: Yarmoss on 2015-07-27. Experienced: 2010-02-26

From Siberia Hut to Kerin Forks jet boat catching site via Gillespie Pass Circuit.
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Distance: 6.7 km (1.5 DOC hours) - Benched track - Easy terrain
Altitude: 316m to 618m. Gain: 61m. Loss: 363m . Gradient: 4 deg (Gentle)
Skills:
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Frequented by Siberia Experience guided walkers, this section of track, like others that guided walkers go on, is at Great Walk level. Benched, graveled, wide etc. Follow markers down to the foot of the Siberia Flats and then the highway down through trees above the impressive lower gorge. Zig zags snake down to the flats of the Wilkin.

Created by: Yarmoss on 2015-07-30. Experienced: 2010-01-25

From Kerin Forks Hut to Top Forks Hut via Wilkin Track
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Distance: 14.1 km (4.5 DOC hours) - Benched track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 320m to 613m. Gain: 382m. Loss: 117m . Gradient: 2 deg (Moderate)
Skills: - Occasional rivers (3/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

From Kerin Forks Hut markers lead into the trees and head up valley on a good track. It's steady progress up to Jumboland Flats, but a number of the side streams crossed a long the way potentially become uncrossable after heavy rain. It's 2 hours to Jumboland where there is good camping on both sides of the river. The Wilkin is knee deep and crossable here under normal conditions but has a strong current. Carrying on up river the track climbs up above a gorge before dropping down to the extensive upper flats. The marked track sticks to the true right the whole way up and climbs very steeply up and over Peak 710 over a flood route. It is far easier under normal flows to cross to the true left and go up valley past Peak 710 before crossing back past the hill. The area around the small lakes between Peak 710 and the airstrip shown on this map is full of overgrown boulders (an ancient land slide) and is best avoided by either sticking to the river bank or hard against the northern bush edge. Once past Peak 710 its a short walk around the hill to Top Forks Hut.

Created by: Yarmoss on 2015-08-03. Experienced: 2011-01-01

From Top Forks Hut to Upper Ruth Flat Rock Bivvy via Rabbit Pass Route
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Distance: 14.0 km (10.0 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Moderate terrain
Altitude: 609m to 1579m. Gain: 1124m. Loss: 970m . Gradient: 9 deg (Moderate)
Skills: Occasional scrambles (3/7) - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Note: A crossing of Rabbit Pass involves 2 dangerous climbs, one on the infamous Wilkin waterfall face, the other on the East Matukituki cliff. This route should only be attempted in good conditions. While people do make the crossing south to north, this involves a down-climb of the waterfall face, in my opinion a more daunting prospect then going up it.

From Top Forks Hut markers lead into the bush where a decent track heads up Snow Bridge Gorge. Once out of the trees the track sidles through scrub up the gorge, which in 2010 was fairly overgrown in places. It takes about 3 hours to reach the snow grass flats which stretch from Waterfall Flat. As you make your way up the flats the impressive view of the valley head gets better and better. Theres a small rock biv under an obvious boulder near the head of the valley, a few hundred metres from the start of the Waterfall Route.

The route up the face starts well to the right (north) of the actual waterfall and initially climbs up a grass spur. It then sidles right (north) through bluffs, standing in boot holes kicked into the bank while hanging onto snow grass, before reaching a steep rocky section which you apparently go straight up on. In 2010 this was wet weepy rock following a couple of wet days. A grassy gut to the left (south) of the rock provides an alternative route up. At the top of the gut its a long climbing sidle to the left (south) which takes you to the top of the face, some 130m higher then the actual waterfall. This last sidle is extremely exposed and a slip would be fatal. Once at the top the views out over Waterfall Flat are fair reward.

Drop down scree and rock to the infant Wilkin South branch and follow it southwards. Rock soon gives way to grass and alpine meadows. Pearson Saddle is an easy side trip from the valley floor and makes a great spot for a late lunch. Carrying on through Rabbit Pass the massive East Matukituki cliff drops away on your right as snow poles come into sight. Follow the poles eastwards along the top of the cliff as far as the 1600m contour where a final pole mounted in a cairn marks the start of the descent into the Matukituki. Descend down a steep zig zag though loose scree to reach the top of the cliff. In 2010 a marker lay about 30m below at the foot of a vertical gut. A narrow ledge, covered in loose, crumbly schist rock drops westwards down the bluff at a steep angle. Descend very carefully down the ledge, all the way to the bottom. Going is slow, and frequented with showers of loose rock down the ledge (and onto any party members below you). Like the Wilkin Waterfall face, I wouldn't even dream of attempting this in anything other then ideal conditions. Allow an hour to get down with a party of 2 people, much longer with larger parties simply due to falling rock hazard.

Once down the cliff head westwards down steep scree slopes following snow poles, and then southwards on snow grass until you eventually hit the stream coming down from Rabbit Pass. Best travel is in rock hopping in the stream to avoid scrub and flood damaged terrain. Flat terrain is finally reached down at about 800m. Follow the Matukituki down through grassy flats, crossing as required for the best travel. There's camping all down the length of the valley as far as Ruth Flat. To locate the upper rock biv leave the Matukituki when you reach the stream coming down from between Aspinall Peak and Peak 1828 and look for an overhanging cliff on the true right side of the stream a few dozen metres up from the Matukituki, well hidden by bushes. If you want to push on to Ruth Flat its further hour's easy walk.

Last updated by: Yarmoss at 2015-08-05 19:43:53. Experienced: 2010-04-06

Distance: 14.4 km (9.0 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 363m to 1054m. Gain: 572m. Loss: 980m . Gradient: 6 deg (Moderate)
Skills: Alpine weather (2/7) - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

From the biv cross head back down to the East Matukituki river and follow it down the flats, crossing as required for the best travel, to Ruth Flats as marked on map CA11, about 1 hour from the biv. At the bottom of the flats markers lead into the bush and begins to climb up the hill above the Bledisloe Gorge. The first large stream you encounter coming down from between Peak 1866 and Point 1534 is an impressive rock chocked flood channel which you have to scramble down into and out of. Probably impassible after rain. After passing above some bluffs the track clears the bush and traverses open terrain which stretches down from the Albert Burn Saddle about, about 3 hours from Ruth Flat. The track drops steeply down the hill side, reentering the bush and heads all the way down the Matukituki. In late 2013 there was a large scrub fire around here. I'm not sure if its had an effect on the track or not. Cross the 3 wire bridge over the Matukituki and then cross the flood plain of Junction Flat (good camping spots). A second 3 wire crosses the Kitchener River. The track carries on down river until finally you reach a small clearing with good camping not far up from the Glacier Burn, about 8 hours from Ruth Flat. The car park at Cameron Flat is only about 1.5 hours away if you want to walk straight out.

Created by: Yarmoss on 2015-08-10. Experienced: 2010-04-07

From Lower East Matukituki camp spot to Cameron Flat car park via East Matukituki Track
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Distance: 4.4 km (1.5 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy terrain
Altitude: 323m to 375m. Gain: 25m. Loss: 62m . Gradient: 1 deg (Flat)
Skills: - Occasional rivers (3/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Follow the track to the Glacier Burn which is easily forded, or use the 3 Wire. Markers lead across the flarmland which makes up the lower East Matukituki. I cant remember the exact route but it sticks to fence lines and passes through gates. Please leave all farm gates as you find them. The markers lead onto the main farm road which is followed down to the West Matukituki River. Ford the river (impassible after rain) and cross flood plains to the car park at Cameron Flat. If hitch hiking, your best chance of catching a ride to Wanaka is from midday onwards once everyone starts returning form the popular Rob Roy Glacier walk.

Created by: Yarmoss on 2015-08-10. Experienced: 2010-04-08


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