Red deer, chamois, thar and hares can all be hunted in the Landsborough and Clarke valleys—the true right headwaters of the Haast Valley.


  • Chamois
  • Deer - Red
  • Tahr

Permit requirements

A permit is required to hunt on public conservation land.

This hunting area is covered by an 'open area permit' – get it online or from a DOC office.

Dog access

Dogs with a DOC permit only. More information below or contact the relevant DOC office.

About this hunting block


The Landsborough and Clarke valleys are the true right headwaters of the Haast valley. The area is approached on SH6 from either Haast or Wanaka.

There are three distinct areas to visit; SH6 to Strutt Bluff; upstream of Strutt Bluff and the Clarke valley.

These are large open valleys, mostly beech forest and tussock tops and many grassed river flats. Side streams are mainly steep and gorgy higher up but many have wide boulder fans lower down.

There are two hunting ballot systems for parts of the Landsborough-Clarke valleys. These are balloted upper valley roar blocks for March and April; and an annual balloted thar hunting access system that applies to the Hooker–Landsborough Wildernes Area April to July. For further information on these ballots contact the Haast Visitor Centre.

More information and how to apply for the roar ballot.


Access to the area is via SH6. Turn off onto the Landsborough Valley Road on the east side of the Pleasant Flat Bridge. This 12 km gravel road/track provides 4WD access through retired farmland to Strutt Bluff. Note that this road is infrequently maintained, is often closed with wind fallen trees, has several streams to ford and is not suitable for 2WD vehicles. Travel on foot across Strutt Bluff is very difficult.

The Landsborough valley upstream of Kea Flat is a Wilderness Area and no aircraft landings are permitted except those allocated through the annual Thar Ballot. There are grass airstrips at Harper, Creswicke, Toetoe and Kea Flats; the condition of these can change without notice and are only suitable for experienced bush pilots. Helicopters based at Haast, Wanaka and Karangarua and fix wing planes from Makarora are frequently used to provide access to permitted landing sites.

The Clarke valley is accessed by a difficult river crossing at Strutt Bluff that should only be attempted at low river level. Foot access to the mid valley beyond here is easy with large river flats to cross. The Wilderness Area boundary is at Davies Flat.

Crossing Strutt Bluff on foot is difficult and dangerous and the Landsborough river can be very difficult to cross at most times. There are no bridges in the valley.

Stay safe when crossing rivers

If you plan to cross unbridged rivers, know how to cross safely and be prepared for if you cannot cross.

Do not cross if the river is flooded, you cannot find safe entry and exit points or are unsure it’s safe. Turn back or wait for the river to drop. If in doubt, stay out.

How to cross rivers safely


You do not cross any leased or privately owned land to access this area.


Topo50 maps BY13, BY14, BY15.


Dogs are prohibited in all areas except where authorisation has been granted by DOC. People wishing to take a dog into this area should seek authorisation from the local DOC office.


There is one DOC hut in the valley at Creswicke Flat and a private NZDA hut near the main road.


Red deer can be found throughout the area at any time of the year however spring/summer hunting on the grass flats and the Roar is most popular. The blocks above Strutt Bluff and in the Clarke are balloted during the Roar. The areas below Strutt Bluff are open blocks.

Chamois are found throughout in low numbers. Thar can be encountered in all higher altitude areas but are more common in the upper Landsborough. Hares are found throughout. Possums are controlled by DOC so are usually in low numbers.

Additional information

Check for current pesticide operations that may be in progress where you intend to hunt using the pesticide summary map West Coast pesticide map.

There are stoat trap lines throughout the Landsborough for the protection of mohua (yellowhead). Please do not disturb these traps.

The use of shotguns, shotgun-rifle combos, .22 calibre and rim-fire firearms is prohibited on public conservation land unless stated otherwise.


Awarua/Haast Visitor Centre
Phone +64 3 750 0809
Email haastvc@doc.govt.nz
Address Haast Junction
Corner SH6 and Jackson Bay Road
Haast 7886
Hours See visitor centre hours
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