Distance: 52.8 km (33.5 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Moderate terrain
Altitude: 305m to 1633m. Gain: 3279m. Loss: 3781m . Gradient: 8 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills: Occasional scrambles (3/7) - Occasional rivers (3/6) Winter - Iceaxe/crampons (4/7)


Distance: 14.2 km (9.0 DOC hours) - Tramping track - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 305m to 1458m. Gain: 1258m. Loss: 638m . Gradient: 8 deg (Moderate)
Skills: Alpine weather (2/7) - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

From the car park follow a 4WD track up the hill until a sign points the way to the "Boyd Creek Tops". Follow a well marked track across scrubby terrain and then up through bush all the way to bush line. Cross open tussock tops, keeping high to avoid swampy terrain, to the southern branch of Walker Creek draining the Countess Range tops. Climb up tussock between sub-branches of Walker Creek to reach scree, and ascend to the obvious low point of the range between Winton Peak and Peak 1690. From the top, Peak 1690 can be easily climbed as a side trip by following the ridge south. Descend northeast from the ridge of the Countess Range into the stream valley draining southeastwards from Winton Peak. Follow the stream all the way down into the Upukerora Valley, negotiating scrub at the bottom. Descend the broad, tussock covered valley to find shelter in the tree line 1.5km away if required.

Last updated by: Yarmoss at 2015-06-04 20:27:08. Experienced: 2015-03-01

From Sheltered Campsite, Upukerora River to Saddle north of Pt 1777 via Livingstone Mountains part 1
View
Distance: 0.0 km (2.0 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 925m to 1436m. Gain: 511m. Loss: 0m . Gradient: 30 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills: Alpine weather (2/7) - Occasional rivers (3/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

Multiple routes exist, up spurs onto the Livingstone Range, and down to Forks hut, but the route as traveled here heads north from the tree line campsite to a large stream draining the tops between Peak 1588 and Peak 1777 and then follows this up to where it branches. Climb the ridge line between the branches, initially up tussock then firm scree, all the way up to 1400m. From here begin to angle northeastwards to gain the low saddle on the ridge line of the Livingstone Mountains. The valley draining eastwards towards the Windon Burn appears to be bluffy southeastwards of the lakes shown of the map but a way down might be possible. T

Last updated by: Yarmoss at 2020-01-22 03:48:20. Experienced: 2015-03-02

From Saddle north of Pt 1777 to Forks Hut via Livingstone Mountains part 2
View
Distance: 0.1 km (3.0 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 776m to 1633m. Gain: 128m. Loss: 861m . Gradient: 39 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills: Alpine weather (2/7) - Occasional rivers (3/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

The ridge line of the Livingstone Mountains is broad and easy to follow so head northwards past Peak 1588 (sidle on scree on its eastern side) and follow the ridge line up to the base of Peak 1750. Peak 1750 makes a good side trip and is easily climbed from here. Drop northwards down steep scree and tussock into the valley draining the northern slopes of Peak 1750, and descend down on the true right avoiding numerous Spaniard bushes. Between 900-1000m cross the stream to the true left and descend down tussock slopes into the Windon Burn valley, Forks hut clearly visible on the other side of the river. Look for a crossing point , or make your way down to the 4WD ford and gain the 4WD track on the true left of the Windon Burn. Follow this up to Forks hut.

Last updated by: Yarmoss at 2020-01-22 03:57:30. Experienced: 2019-12-16

From Forks Hut to Eglinton River East Branch Camp spot via Livingstone Mountains
View
Distance: 17.4 km (8.0 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 791m to 1517m. Gain: 973m. Loss: 876m . Gradient: 6 deg (Moderate)
Skills: Occasional scrambles (3/7) - Occasional rivers (3/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

From Forks hut head westwards up the hill behind the huts and head up valley through tussock and occasional scrub. Under normal flows the Windon Burn can be crossed as required to avoid the worst of the terrain, but in general the open valley is pretty easy travel. After rain it not possible to cross the river until north of Pt 1397. A boulder field covered in scrub on the valley floor east of Pt 1557 can be avoided by crossing to the western side of the valley.

The Windon can be followed all the way to the head of the valley, climbing directly up to Pt1553 on decent scree, but a worthwhile route up to the ridge line involves going by the lake and swamp shown on the topomap. Cross a large side stream and climb the spur that comes off Peak 1711 at the 1060m contour and climb up to about 1300m before sidling northwards below the scree shown on the map. You'll soon reach a delightful area of alpine boglands and tarns with firm travel between the water features. Cross the outlet of the largest lake and climb directly northwards up onto the ridge line of the Livingstone Mountains at about Point 1508.

Follow the ridge line eastwards and either go up and over Point 1553, or do as I did and sidle under bluffs beneath it, at the head of the valley draining down into the East Eglinton. Sidle northeastwards across a mixture of scree, tussock and talus. Theres a lake at CC09 149 028 at the head of the northern branch of this first side stream which looked like it had good camp sites. Climb up to the ridge line between Point 1417 and Peak 1991 and then drop steeply down into a 2nd, larger valley containing a stream draining the northern slopes of Moffat Peak. Climb northwards out of the valley to the ridge line between Point 1305 and Peak 1731. From CC09 148 045 there is a steep but straight forward descent to the northwest all the way down to the floor of the East Eglinton, initially on rock/clay and then tussock and scrub. Skirt around bush and cross a large tussocky clearing to another steep descent down to a large side stream at the top of the East Eglinton gorge at 800m. Walk up the true left side of the East Eglinton, once clear of the gorge there are exposed camp sites by the river, or continue up the tussock flats for an hour to camp at the bush edge near where the eastern tributary drops into the flats.

Last updated by: Yarmoss at 2020-01-22 03:34:04. Experienced: 2019-12-14

From Eglinton River East Branch Camp spot to North Cascade Creek camp spot via Eglinton River East Branch/Cascade Creek Saddle
View
Distance: 9.5 km (7.0 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Moderate terrain
Altitude: 869m to 1098m. Gain: 109m. Loss: 319m . Gradient: 3 deg (Gentle)
Skills: Alpine weather (2/7) - Occasional rivers (3/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

From your camp spot in the East Eglinton river flats flats make your way to roughly where the eastern tributary joins up with the main wast branch of the Eglinton. Cross to the true right to avoid scrub at the head of the flats and continue up river for about 1km before crossing back to the true left. Continue up valley as the river drops through a gorge at about CC09 135 093. The upper valley is all tussock with numerous thickly scrubbed side creeks but there is decent travel close to the main river.

Eventually reach the low, swampy saddle that separates the East Eglinton from the southern branch of Cascade Creek. Keep to the west side of the valley to avoid swamps and eventually drop down to the thickly scrubbed southern branch of Cascade Creek and cross to its true right side. Sidle around the head of Cascade Creek and make your way up the true left side of the northern branch crossing scrub filled side creeks. A large boulder field at CB09 148 163 is best avoided by crossing to the true right. Carry on up the creek until clear of the boulders and return to the true left. There is camping in the creek bed, the flat ground outside of the creek was swampy in December 2019. To carry on to the Duck/Cascade Saddle follow a spur on the true right up to the obvious low ground at the Duck Creek/Cascade Creek saddle about an hour further on.

Last updated by: Yarmoss at 2020-01-22 19:31:56. Experienced: 2019-12-13

From Duck Creek/Cascade Creek Saddle to McKellar Hut via Duck Creek route/Williamsons Track
View
Distance: 2.4 km (1.5 DOC hours) - Unmarked route, clear - Easy-moderate terrain
Altitude: 630m to 1322m. Gain: 9m. Loss: 692m . Gradient: 17 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills: Alpine weather (2/7) Winter - Iceaxe/crampons (4/7)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

From the low point on the saddle climb eastwards to the broad ridge north of Point 1362. A dry water channel runs down the spur through the tussock, a few metres back from the drop off into Duck Creek. Head down towards the tree line where the water channel enters the trees. Follow as it drops steeply down through the bush. When the gradient slackens off the dry water channel becomes a ground trail which runs parallel to Duck Creek. Follow the trail, past the inlet pipe and water storage tank for Mckellar hut to connect with the Greenstone track at the true right side of the bridge over Duck Creek. McKellar hut is a couple of hundred metres southeastwards down the track.

Last updated by: Yarmoss at 2015-06-04 17:28:37. Experienced: 2015-03-04

From McKellar Hut to Lake Howden Hut via Greenstone Track
View
Distance: 6.4 km (2.0 DOC hours) - Benched track - Easy terrain
Altitude: 630m to 715m. Gain: 182m. Loss: 117m . Gradient: 3 deg (Gentle)
Skills: - Streams (2/6)
GPX info source: Drawn on map

From McKellar Hut follow the well formed Greenstone track northwards past Lake McKellar and the turnoff to the Caples Track. There is an official DOC campsite near Greenstone Saddle with a pit toilet which is the closest "official" place you can camp for free to the Routeburn, 1 hour from Howden Hut. Continue on past Lake Howden to reach Howden Hut at the lake's outlet, on the Routeburn Track.

Last updated by: Bernieq at 2015-07-06 03:15:41. Experienced: 2009-04-10

From Lake Howden Hut to The Divide via Routeburn Track
View
Distance: 2.9 km (1.0 DOC hours) - Surfaced walkway - Easy terrain
Altitude: 527m to 780m. Gain: 109m. Loss: 278m . Gradient: 8 deg (Moderate)
Skills:
GPX info source: Drawn on map

From Howden Hut follow the Routeburn Track up the hill and past the Key Summit turnoff, and down to the car park at the Divide. Simple!

Created by: Yarmoss on 2015-06-07. Experienced: 2015-03-05


Comments: Add
You are not currently signed in. Please register to comment