IntroductionClimb steeply up to Carroll Hut for good views (on fine days) down the Taramakau River to the West Coast.
The track climbs steeply through rātā/kāmahi forest and subalpine scrub. This leads on to tussock grasslands surrounding Carroll Hut on Kelly Range. On fine days there are good views from the saddle behind the hut, looking down the Taramakau River to the West Coast.
The track starts at Kellys Creek, 3 km north of Otira village on SH73.
Carroll Tops to Taipo Valley access washed out
Access to the Taipo Valley from the Carroll tops has been washed out in the lower sections of Seven Mile Stream, with the river cutting into the bank.
Travel now requires crossing Seven Mile Stream, which is uncrossable at high flows.
Walking above the bush line
What to take
Take a compass and map and know how to use them. Conditions can change rapidly and you may need these for navigation if visibility deteriorates unexpectedly.
Do not proceed above the bush line on to the open tops unless you have sturdy footwear, a waterproof parka and spare warm clothing including warm headwear and gloves.
Check the Arthur's Pass National Park weather forecast before you go. Walking above the bush line is recommended only in good weather conditions as you need good visibility to find your way. Above the bush line you are very exposed to the severity of the mountain weather.
If it is raining, stormy or there is low cloud around the mountains, there will probably be no views above the bush line, and conditions will be unpleasant at best and dangerous at worst.
When snow covers the ground, routes will be less obvious and there may also be a danger of avalanches and ice - mountaineering equipment is recommended and you will need to have the skills to assess avalanche risk.
Routes above the bush line are not marked and are recommended for experienced alpine trampers or mountaineers only.