Exploring Mt Aspiring National Park is an unforgettable experience with striking landscape formations and bush lines. Mt. Aspiring is located to the South West of Mt. Aspiring National Park. It has a World Heritage status. The wilderness of Mt Aspiring has attracted many outdoor lovers over the years. Outdoor activities like hiking, bouldering, climbing, fishing and cycling are the main targets for many to visit the untouched place. In Wanaka, Mt. Aspiring National Park is well signposted and it is easy to find the way.
On the way out of Wanaka, the Top 10 Holiday Park is just located next to the road and is a very nice place with a great view to Lake Wanaka and the surrounding Mountain. At Glendhu Bay, there is a typical Kiwi Style Camping Ground which is very busy through the summer month. By Kiwi Campers the privilege of this camp site is to have direct access to the lake and has a boat ramp to lunch the boat into Lake Wanaka. Just a few kilometers away from Glendhu bay is a turn off to west Wanaka Rd, if you take this road it will lead you to West Wanaka Station. There is a DOC car park the perfect start to explore the west side of Lake Wanaka, this location is a good place for fishing in the pristine waters.
To travel from Wanaka to Raspberry Creek is a good day encounter with enough time for a rewarding picnic beside the slow flowing river Matukituki. As we are back to the Wanaka, we take a right turn at Mt Aspiring road towards the mountains. From this part of the road is the road into Treble Cone which is already visible to the left. The first attraction is Diamond Lake, a small lake imbedded into a harmonic landscape, and toitoi.
On the last meter on tarmac is the turn off to Treble Cone. The road is in a good shape to drive up to the Cornet Peak ski lift, on top is a starting point for hang glider on warm days is a very rewarding thermal wind which gives the hang glider a good lift into higher levels. Standing at the car park of Ski lift is an awesome panoramic view to Dunstan Mountains, Lake Wanaka and East of Otago.
Back to the Wanaka, we take a left turn at Mt. Aspiring Road and a yellow signpost signals the start of the Gravel Road for next 40km, the gravel is very loose some times and many pumps are on the drive way which can make the driving exhausting by too less speed. However, the braided river valleys, native bush land, alpine meadows with relaxing sheep’s and cows rewarding the drive into the dramatic Southern Alps.
Short after Mt Aspiring Station is the first Ford Crossing usually it look more dramatic than it is very settled underground and easy to drive through, from that point the scenery get better and better, the road follow the braided river valley, with many romantic places to camp or just having a rewarding picnic beside the relaxing flowing river. At the end of Wanaka Mt Aspiring Road is the Raspberry Creek’s car park, with toilet facility. From there, it starts up the day with a walk into the national park. It takes around 3hours for a return trip. For more adventurous individual, you may start the multi day hike back to Glenorchy. Remember not to litter the countryside and to take all the rubbish back with you out, and leave only your foot prints behind. This is for the effort of protecting the beauty of our nature for our Children.
For more information about activities please refer to DOC office in Wanaka and to find out more about the latest updates about the area.
Department of Conservation
Lake Wanaka Area
Office PO Box 93
Ph +64 3 443 7660 Fax + 64 3 443 8777