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5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike

Days
5

Pricing From
$1995

Difficulty

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Overview

Join us for an epic 5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike from Nelson in New Zealand. Your journey takes you on ‘The Old Ghost Road,’ a historic track that has sprung back to life from the remains of roads and settlements during the gold rushes. Surrounded by the mountains and valleys of the South Island’s West Coast, the track cuts through the Lyell range and follows the Mokihinui River. While the beginning and end points of the track followed mining settlements and roads from the 19th century Gold Rush, the middle of the track was completed in 2015 thanks to a determined group of volunteers.

If you are looking for a more invigorating hike than ‘Heaphy Track’ and ‘Abel Tasman’ but less demanding than the ‘Nelson Lakes’ walks, The Old Ghost Road provides that transition between the two especially for returning customers or first timers who want more adventure. 

Tour Grading: D

  • This trek is for active trampers - age is no barrier but it is a challenging five-day walk.
  • The accommodation is Department of Conservation huts - these are comfortable but must be shared with other walkers.
  • Guests must carry their own pack containing clothing, bedding and some group food or equipment.
  • Guides carry most of the food and cooking utensils.

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

5 Day Old Ghost Road Hike, Nelson, New Zealand

Itinerary

Open All
Day 1Nelson to Lyell Saddle Hut 18km, 4-6 hours

Early pick up at accommodation in Nelson and travel by minivan to Lyell Carpark (beginning of the track) for a final briefing and the start of your walk. We begin with a steady grade on the old benched track climbing to the Lyell Saddle hut (885 metres above sea level). Beech forest dominates this track as we ascend through the clouds to emerge at the hut with beautiful views over the valleys.

Day 2Lyell Saddle Hut to Ghost Lake Hut12km, 3-5 hours

6 km of graded climbing through cloud forest up to the tussock tops of the Lyell Range. Then it’s 6 km of relatively level open-tops travel to ‘Ghost Lake’ and the stunning Ghost Lake Hut. Unparalleled views of pure South Island majesty are yours with every stride. we will be spending lots of time exploring the tops today as we have  a shorter day and this section is particularly amazing.

Day 3Ghost Lake Hut to Stern Valley Hut13km, 3-4 hours

Two sharp descents and ridge travel mark this day and it’s predominantly downhill (800 metres of altitude loss) all the way to Stern Valley Hut.  Prepare yourself for the Dr Seuss-like ‘Skyline Steps’ at the end of Skyline Ridge. we will continue to wind our way down to stern valley for a delicious dinner and a well deserved bed

Day 4Stern Valley Hut to Specimen Point Hut25km, 7-8 hours

With various destination options this day (including intermediate but more basic hut sites at Goat Creek and Mokihinui Forks), it’s on up Earnest Valley (north branch of Stern Creek) and through the strange but gorgeous open meadows of its catchment. At the twin lakes (Lake Grim and Lake Cheerful), the track switches back into climb mode through the ‘Boneyard’ heading for ‘Solemn Saddle’ and then leads on down through ‘The Hanging Judge’ into the headwaters of the Goat Creek catchment. Scrub and grass covered valleys form the way until the final couple of kilometres through bush to the historic Goat Creek Hut. Stern Creek Hut to Goat Creek Hut 14 km; 3-4 hours. From Goat Creek Hut it’s 8 km of flat walking down through the beautiful podocarp forest of the Mokihinui River South Branch to the Mokihinui Forks Hut (2 -3 hours). Then just a further 3 km, 1 – 1.5 hours down to the Specimen Point Hut settlement at the head of the mighty Mokihinui River Gorge.

Day 5Specimen Point Hut to Welcome Bay/Seddonville17km, 4-6 hours

Undulating walking as The Old Ghost Road picks up the old miners’ track hugging the true left bank of the mighty Mokihinui River gorge with stunning river views. Our van meets us at the Rough and Tumble Lodge from where we transfer you back to Nelson, with stops for lunch and afternoon tea on the way home.

Arrive back in Nelson at approximately 7 pm on Day 5.

COST PER PERSON

October 2017 - April 2018

  • NZ$1,995

Gear Hire

  • Backpack: NZ$50 per item
  • Sleeping bag: NZ$50 per item
  • Rain Jacket: NZ$50 per item
  • Hiking pole: NZ$20 per pair

Itinerary

Open All
Day 1Nelson to Lyell Saddle Hut 18km, 4-6 hours

Early pick up at accommodation in Nelson and travel by minivan to Lyell Carpark (beginning of the track) for a final briefing and the start of your walk. We begin with a steady grade on the old benched track climbing to the Lyell Saddle hut (885 metres above sea level). Beech forest dominates this track as we ascend through the clouds to emerge at the hut with beautiful views over the valleys.

Day 2Lyell Saddle Hut to Ghost Lake Hut12km, 3-5 hours

6 km of graded climbing through cloud forest up to the tussock tops of the Lyell Range. Then it’s 6 km of relatively level open-tops travel to ‘Ghost Lake’ and the stunning Ghost Lake Hut. Unparalleled views of pure South Island majesty are yours with every stride. we will be spending lots of time exploring the tops today as we have  a shorter day and this section is particularly amazing.

Day 3Ghost Lake Hut to Stern Valley Hut13km, 3-4 hours

Two sharp descents and ridge travel mark this day and it’s predominantly downhill (800 metres of altitude loss) all the way to Stern Valley Hut.  Prepare yourself for the Dr Seuss-like ‘Skyline Steps’ at the end of Skyline Ridge. we will continue to wind our way down to stern valley for a delicious dinner and a well deserved bed

Day 4Stern Valley Hut to Specimen Point Hut25km, 7-8 hours

With various destination options this day (including intermediate but more basic hut sites at Goat Creek and Mokihinui Forks), it’s on up Earnest Valley (north branch of Stern Creek) and through the strange but gorgeous open meadows of its catchment. At the twin lakes (Lake Grim and Lake Cheerful), the track switches back into climb mode through the ‘Boneyard’ heading for ‘Solemn Saddle’ and then leads on down through ‘The Hanging Judge’ into the headwaters of the Goat Creek catchment. Scrub and grass covered valleys form the way until the final couple of kilometres through bush to the historic Goat Creek Hut. Stern Creek Hut to Goat Creek Hut 14 km; 3-4 hours. From Goat Creek Hut it’s 8 km of flat walking down through the beautiful podocarp forest of the Mokihinui River South Branch to the Mokihinui Forks Hut (2 -3 hours). Then just a further 3 km, 1 – 1.5 hours down to the Specimen Point Hut settlement at the head of the mighty Mokihinui River Gorge.

Day 5Specimen Point Hut to Welcome Bay/Seddonville17km, 4-6 hours

Undulating walking as The Old Ghost Road picks up the old miners’ track hugging the true left bank of the mighty Mokihinui River gorge with stunning river views. Our van meets us at the Rough and Tumble Lodge from where we transfer you back to Nelson, with stops for lunch and afternoon tea on the way home.

Arrive back in Nelson at approximately 7 pm on Day 5.

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