This short steady climb up a now bush-covered ice-scraped rock offers the most impressive views of the glacier and the Waiho River.
Information panels at the viewpoint show dramatic photos of the glacial retreat, making it one of the best places to appreciate the power of the glacier.
Sentinel Rock emerged from beneath the glacier in 1865 and is an example of how the glacial ice ground the hard schist bedrock into a Roche moutonnee or ‘rock sheep’.
Since 1909 the glacier has retreated over 3 km and plants have progressively colonised where a veneer of rubble has been dumped over bedrock in the valley.
Drive or walk south a short distance from the Franz Josef Waiau township across the Waiho River bridge and turn left onto the Glacier Access Road or Te Ara a Waiau.
Drive or walk for approximately 4 km to the car park at the end of the road.
Auckland and parts of the Waikato are at Level 3. DOC huts and campsites are closed in these regions. The rest of New Zealand is at Level 2.