Roaring Meg Pack Track

Image: DOC

Introduction

Three tracks are on and around the uplands of the Pisa Conservation Area which lies between Wanaka and Cromwell.

Track overview

Walking and tramping

Advanced: Tramping track

Mountain biking

Advanced: Grade 4

About this track

Description

Roaring Meg Pack Track starts from Tuhoy's Gully car park. You can go on to walk the Circuit Track or Cardrona-Cromwell Pack Track. 

Roaring Meg Pack Track

Time: Tuohys Gully Car park - Meg Hut 2 hr (6.5 km) | Tuohys Gully Car park - Roaring Meg Car park 5-6 hr (19 km)

From the Tuohys Gully car park an access track climbs steadily up the gully to the 1140 m Tuohys Saddle. Nearing the saddle the marked track forks - the left fork descends to Meg Hut. Following the right fork, the main Roaring Meg Pack Track follows an easy-grade track down to Miners Hut, a privately owned musterers hut. The track goes sideways through some steep sections as it follows the gorge of the Roaring Meg/Te Wai a Korokio.

Mountain bikes, firearms and dogs are not permitted on the track from the conservation boundary to the Roaring Meg Power Station as this crosses a privately owned working farm - access through this section is for walkers and trampers only.

The farm track from the conservation boundary to above the Meg Dam is not well marked. Follow the road down to the Roaring Meg Recreation Reserve, opposite the power station on SH6 in the Kawarau Gorge.

Circuit Track

Time: 4-5 hr (14 km)

This provides the opportunity to explore part of the Pisa Range and finish where you started. Follow the Roaring Meg Pack Track from the Tuohys Gully car park to Tuohys Saddle. Take the track on the left to Meg Hut and follow the Roaring Meg Stream down to Miners Hut (private). This will involve a number of river crossings. The return journey is via an easy ascent to Tuohys Saddle, then the descent to the car park.

Cardrona-Cromwell Pack Track

Time: Meg Hut to Lowburn (Swann Road) 6.5 – 8.5 hr (17.5 km)

Meg Hut - Deep Creek Hut 3-4 hr (8 km)

From Meg Hut the poled track climbs through the Pisa Conservation Area’s golden tussock grasslands before traversing along one of the areas many prominent ridgelines. After passing through sections of an old water race the track descends a 4WD road to Deep Creek Hut.

Time: Deep Creek Hut to Lowburn (Swann Road) 3.5 to 4.5 hr (9.5 km)

The section of track from Deep Creek Hut through Lowburn Station to Swann Road travels through private property on a working farm, to ensure continued access through this section please respect the landowner’s access conditions and remain on the marked track.

From Deep Creek Hut, follow the farm road up to the ridge. Signage on a farm gate indicates the start of access through Lowburn Station. The poled route follows the ridge on a farm road for a short distance before dropping steeply down a fence line to an old cattle track. The route sidles along the cattle track until it intersects and again follows a farm road down to the valley floor and the ruins of an old stone cottage. Here you cross the Low Burn for one last uphill climb before crossing through farm paddock to the stile on Swann Road.

Getting there

Access to the tracks is from Tuohys Gully car park which is off the lower section of the Waiorau Snowfarm Road, 22 km from Wanaka on the Cardrona Valley Road.

Track restrictions

Roaring Meg Pack Track: The section from the Roaring Meg Power Station to the conservation boundary crosses a private working farm. To ensure continued access through this section visitors must respect the landowner's conditions: no dogs, mountain bikes or firearms are permitted.

Access via the Waiorau Snow Farm road

If you're not paying to use their facilities, using the Snow Farm access road to reach the Pisa Conservation Area incurs a fee:

  • $30 during winter (June – August) and paid at the Snow Farm Lodge office.
  • $20 during summer (September – May) and paid at the security box in the main carpark.

Southern Hemisphere Proving Ground operates year-round, so be aware of machinery and vehicles operating in the car park at all times.

Access roads to the north are used for vehicle testing – extreme care is required. Photographs near and entry to this testing area is not permitted.

Foot access to the Pisa Conservation Area is via an easement marked with orange marker poles from the DOC sign.

Foot access is not permitted on the Snow Farm road.

Know before you go

  • In summer, very hot and dry conditions are common. Carrying an adequate supply of both drinking water and sun protection is essential.
  • In winter, mountaineering experience is required along with knowledge of avalanche conditions.
  • Firearms are not permitted on easements through private property including transportation in vehicles. Entry with a firearm is permitted via the Crown Saddle Car Park.

Dog access
Dogs are allowed in the conservation area but entry/exit is restricted to the Crown Saddle Carpark access. All other entry points are via easements through private property and require landowner permission to enter with a dog including transporting them in vehicles.

Adverse weather: The weather can change rapidly in New Zealand. Hypothermia is a real risk even in summer. Be prepared by having warm, windproof clothing and the appropriate footwear. Whiteout conditions caused by snow or low cloud may be present.

Be avalanche alert: This area has terrain that can produce avalanches that cross the track, usually from May into November. View avalanche information.

Private property: This track crosses private land. Respect the landowner's livestock and property: stay on the marked track until you reach the conservation land, leave gates as you find them and use stiles where provided. Livestock can be unpredictable – keep your distance at all times/go around if necessary. 

No camping until the conservation area boundary.

Before you go into the outdoors, tell someone your plans and leave a date to raise the alarm if you haven't returned. To do this, use the New Zealand Outdoors Intentions process on the AdventureSmart website. It is endorsed by New Zealand's search and rescue agencies and provides three simple options to tell someone you trust the details about your trip.

Contacts

Tititea / Mount Aspiring National Park Visitor Centre
Phone:   +64 3 443 7660
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Email:   mtaspiringvc@doc.govt.nz
Address:   Ardmore Street
Wanaka 9305
Postal Address:   PO Box 93
Wanaka 9343
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