Enroute to Arthur's Pass

Well renowned with outdoor enthusiasts highlights of the area include limestone outcrops, great areas for family picnics and stunning views of the Waimakariri River, Craigieburn and Torlesse Ranges. Special care must be taken if entering the cave at Cave Stream. Walkers must be well equipped with torches and batteries, wool or propylene clothing, strong footwear and spare clothes to change into. Walkers should also check weather conditions and river levels before entering the cave.

Bridge Hill Walk

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Time to complete: 20 minutes return 
Starting point:
 Park at the locked gate on the road to the Environment Centre and walk down the road/ Turn right at the junction near the Environment Centre and right again when you reach the junction at the Forest Park boundary.

Key highlights:

  • Enjoy panoramic views of Castle Hill Basin and the Torlesse Range from this track.

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Camp Saddle

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Time to complete: 2 hours one way 
Starting point:
 At the locked gate on the Broken River ski field road.

Key highlights:

  • Magnificent scenic views
  • Interesting botanical specimens including celmisia, gentians and edelweiss

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Castle Hill Limestone Reserve

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Time to complete: As long or as short as you like! 
Starting point:
 State Highway 73, 50 km before Arthur's Pass (when travelling from Christchurch). Castle Hill Limestone Reserve/Kura Tawhiti is clearly marked on the left in the Cave Stream Scenic Reserve area. 

Key highlights:

  • Incredibly unique large limestone formations
  • Breath-taking scenery and mountain views
  • A great walk for all ages and abilities

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Cave Stream

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Time to complete: 1 hour 
Starting point:
 Cave Stream Reserve, SH73 between the Broken River bridge and Craigieburn Forest Park entrance

Key highlights:

  • A must do walk through limestone water-grooved rocks in an underground cave
  • Stunning views of nearby mountains
  • The limestone formations nearby were used in the filming of The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.

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Craigieburn Valley Track

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Time to complete: 4 hours return 
Starting point: 
On the Craigieburn Ski Field Road. 1.5 km from the main highway. Park at locked gate on Craigieburn ski field road and walk up road to start. The track can also be accessed by walking over Lyndon Saddle via the Mistletoe or Lyndon Saddle Tracks.

Key highlights:

  • Walk through mountain beech forest and alpine tussocks
  • The return trip can be made via the ski field road

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Dracophyllum Flat Track

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Time to complete: 1.5 hours return 
Starting point:
 From the Broken River Ski Field Road just before Jacks Pass

Key highlights: 

  • A popular picnic site
  • View native tussock, small herbs and ground cover plants on the track
  • Cross over Broken River via a pole bridge

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Helicopter Hill

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Time to complete: 4 hours return 
Starting point:
 Craigieburn picnic shelter

Key highlights:

  • The track climbs from the Lyndon Saddle along a steep ridge with open screes between beech forest
  • Enjoy spectacular views of the Craigieburn and Torlesse ranges and limestone formations

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Hogs Back Track

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Time to complete: 2.5 hours one way 
Starting point: Behind Castle Hill Village on the road to the Thomas Bush and St Andrews Lodge or from Texas Flat on the Cheeseman Ski Field Road

Key highlights:

  • Walk the track from either end
  • Walk through beech forest and across the Hogs Back Creek

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Hut Creek Walk

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Time to complete: 1 hour return 
Starting point: At the Environmental Education Centre off State Highway 73, about 1.5 hours drive from Christchurch. Park at the locked gate on the road to the Environmental Centre and walk down the road to the centre car park.

Key highlights: 

  • Walk through an area that was used for trial planting from 1956 - mid 1970's

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Lyndon Saddle

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Time to complete: 3.5 hours return
Starting point: Craigieburn picnic shelter

Key highlights:

  • Cross Cave Stream and grassy terraces
  • View regenerating beech forest and low glacial terraces

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Mistletoe Track

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Time to complete: 3 hours return 
Starting point:
 Craigieburn Picnic Shelter

Key highlights:

  • Crosses Cave Stream and grassy terraces.

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Nature Trail

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Time to complete: 20 minutes return 
Starting point:
 At the Environment Education Centre off SH 73, about 1.5 hours drive from Christchurch. Park at the locked gate on the road to the Environment Centre and walk down the road to the Centre. Also accessible from the Link track.

Key highlights:

  • View the different stages of beech tree life
  • Native mistletoe (pikirangi) producing blazing red flowers in summer
  • Listen for native birds including rifleman, bellbird, tomtit and grey warbler

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Sidle 73 Track

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Time to complete: 1 hour return
Starting point: Craigieburn picnic shelter

Key highlights:

  • A popular family walk
  • This is also a mountain biking track

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