Otutu Hut is located on the mid-western boundary of the Kaweka Forest Park in the area known as the “Manson Country”. The Manson area was originally grazed by sheep in the 1860’s and the surrounding country-side subjected to large fires that devastated the native vegetation.
At 1280 metres, Otutu Hut is positioned at the edge of the beech forest adjacent to a large area of open tussock. Built in 1971, this hut’s original standard design was recently upgraded to include a large, covered veranda. Although relatively sheltered from the strong westerly winds common to this area, the hut can experience a wide range of climatic conditions including brief snowfalls during cold southerly weather and heavy winter frosts.
The helipad is located 30 metres immediately uphill from the hut. Flight availability and costs can be obtained from helicopter concessionaires in the central North Island.
From Manson Hut a marked track heads north climbing up to Mt Manson (1448 metres altitude). The track turns west before crossing Manson Creek to arrive at Otutu Hut.
From Rocks Ahead Hut the track steeply ascends up onto Spion Kop where a poled route leads west to reach a track junction with the route from Manson Hut. From here, the track swings right and drops into the beech forest and semi-circles around to Otutu Hut. It passes over an open sub-alpine area with extensive views across to the national park.
Caution is advised when travelling in this area, especially the open tops, when poor visibility is often accompanied by high winds and cold temperatures.
Please Note: Otutu Hut no longer has a northerly access to the Ngaruroro River from Ngaawapurua Hut. This track was closed in 2002.
Tramping routes are either to Rocks Ahead Hut in the east or to Manson Hut and onto to Kiwi Mouth Hut in the south.
NZTopo50 map sheet: BJ37
Grid/NZTM2000 coordinates: E1878898, N5647878
Before you go, buy 1 Standard Hut Ticket (blue for adults, yellow for youth) for each night's stay. Put this in the honesty box at the hut. Or buy a Backcountry Hut Pass that gives unlimited use at most Standard and Serviced huts for a 6 or 12 month period.