Otago region

Looking up stream towards the Rats Nest, Greenstone Valley.

Looking up stream towards the Rats Nest, Greenstone Valley

Otago region map.

The Caples and Greenstone Valleys are linked by McKellar Saddle, a sub-alpine pass, to make a moderate four day round trip. It is a moderately demanding tramp with some days averaging 6-7 hours of walking. A reasonable degree of fitness is required.

The Greenstone Valley is a wide, open valley with tussock flats and beech forest. In comparison, the Caples Valley is a narrower valley filled with forest interspersed with grassy clearings. Either of these tracks can be linked with the Routeburn Track, or they can be walked as a one way track starting or finishing either at the Divide or the Greenstone Shelter.

The grassy river flats of the Caples and Greenstone Valleys are private farmland. Please respect this, and stay on the tracks which follow the forest edge. Do not disturb stock. The forest is a Stewardship Area managed by the Department of Conservation. Fiordland National Park begins at the southern end of Lake McKellar.

The superb diversity of natural features in this area is recognised internationally with the establishment of the Te Wāhipounamu-South West New Zealand World Heritage Area. 

View the Greenstone Caples Track brochure (PDF, 1900K).

Great Walk/Easier tramping track Great Walk/Easier tramping track


4 days

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Follow the Outdoor Safety Code:
1. Plan your trip
2. Tell someone
3. Be aware of the weather
4. Know your limits
5. Take sufficient supplies

Alerts for Otago places


Whakatipu-wai-Māori / Queenstown Visitor Centre
Phone:      +64 3 442 7935
Address:   50 Stanley Street
Email:   queenstownvc@doc.govt.nz
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