On the way here you will pass Mirror Lakes and Cascade Creek, which are lovely easy stops right next to the highway, or, do as we did, and head a bit further down the road to Milford then take the Hollyford Track turn off for the short walk across the swing bridge to the falls, 10 along the Marian Lake Track. Perfect day trek. It said 3hr for return but we took <2hr for return. The route meanders on the high summit ridge, past beautiful tarns and with many outstanding viewpoints. Birdlife is prolific and tomtits, robins, New Zealand pigeons and bellbirds are commonly seen. Key Summit provides panoramic views over the Humboldt and Darran Mountains. The turnaround point is the Lake Marian Viewpoint, where you can just see Lake Marian perched in a high hanging valley in the Darran Mountains across the Hollyford Valley.

Key Summit is the first major landmark on the famous Routeburn Track - a DoC Great Walk which traverses Harris Saddle on its way to Lake Wakatipu. Some more photos from Fiordland in New Zealand Walkers then head gradually downhill through silver beech forest to the divide on Milford Road. Until this diversion, and for a short time after, the trail is a gently sloping uphill walk under a canopy of trees. Key Summit is an outstanding easy excursion from the Milford Road or a quick side-trip from the Routeburn Track. Park your car at Divide car park to start part of the Routeburn Track about 1-1.5hr first then to Key Summit Track. Moderate 2.5-mile roundtrip hike along the Routeburn Track (one of NZ’s “Great Walks”) - splits near the summit to take the side trail 20 minutes up to Key Summit (sign post at trail fork). On a good day you will get spectacular views over the surrounding valleys and mountains, but on a day of low cloud, as ours started out, you get nothing. They mistook Lake McKerrow for the coast. 3-3.5hrs/3.4km return-easy hike of Key Summit Track is well-maintained and it’s constant uphill walk thus it’s suitable for of all ages. The rain had mostly stopped and the storm clouds were lifting, and we watched the shadows of the cloud clusters fall on the trees and mountains as they were blown away by the brisk wind. The hike itself is not that interesting (though we did see a kaka chewing on a branch on the way. Please take care and stay on the path -- the native vegetation grows in a unique soil environment and must be protected and preserved. They dropped us off and picked us up again but as it is a linear walk - there and back - you can pa, 3-3.5hrs/3.4km return-easy hike of Key Summit Track is well-maintained and it’s constant uphill walk thus it’s suitable for of all ages. Key Summit and View of Lake Marian via Routeburn Track [CLOSED] is a 4.8 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Glenorchy, Otago, New Zealand that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The track then continues on a gradual descent to the Lake Howden Hut, the perfect place to stop for lunch. We walked up to Key Summit as part of an organised day out to Milford Sound with 'Trips and Tramps'. The first half of the walk is on the famed Routeburn Track, beginning at “The Divide” carpark. However there is a pit toilet. Key Summit Track Description The first part of the walk was in the bush, under a beautiful canopy of trees, ferns, and with the small waterfalls tumbling along the sides of banks you’re walking alongside. A sign marks the turn off to Key Summit Track. Hotels near (AKL) Auckland Intl Airport; Hotels near (ZQN) Frankton Airport; All things to do in Milford; Things to do near Key Summit Track. As the trail emerges from the forest, there are outstanding views down the Hollyford Valley as a taste of the more expansive views to come. The Key Summit Track heads uphill from a signed intersection on the Routeburn Track. This last section to the summit is a half hour slog of switchbacks which will be not ,much of a test if you're fit, but a hard slog to the casual walker. The track is well, graded and passes through pleasant forest with limited views. Key Summit Track on the Routeburn Track By Leonie Freeman in collaboration with Department of Conservation Enjoy panoramic views over Fiordland mountains and alpine lakes as well as native vegetation and birdlife on this fantastic, easy half-day walk on … Most of the trail is relatively smooth and wide enough to pass people (which is good, since it’s a popular one). The track up to Key Summit is the most popular substantial day-walk in Fiordland, and justifiably so. Also, as in most places in NZ, dress in layers, as the amount of exposure and wind changes considerably over the course of the trek. It passes a modest waterfall with some nice forest scenery, but it's when it breaks out of the trees that makes or breaks the walk. 3-3.5hrs/3.4km return-easy hike of Key Summit Track is well-maintained and it’s constant uphill walk thus it’s suitable for of all ages. 3-3.5hrs/3.4km return-easy hike of Key Summit Track is well-maintained and it’s constant uphill walk thus it’s suitable for of all ages. You walk about ~40min in birch forest, then turn right up to expose trek to Key Summit, which is another ~20min. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and nature trips and is accessible year-round. In 1863, Government employed prospector Patrick Quirk Caples, travelled up from the Dart Valley along a route roughly following today’s track. Most of the way up is wooded, which we appreciated because it was raining, and we passed a stunning waterfall, but overall I wasn't too impressed until we got near the top and then LET ME TELL YOU was it amazing. Biodiversity inventory and monitoring toolbox, Intermediate: Great Walk/Easier tramping track, Te Rua-o-te-moko / Fiordland National Park Visitor Centre. Book your tickets online for Key Summit Track, Milford: See 44 reviews, articles, and 54 photos of Key Summit Track, ranked No.1 on Tripadvisor among 7 attractions in Milford. While most of the great walks of New Zealand are multi-day affairs, the Key Summit hike can be easily accomplished during part or all of a day, and is located on the first section of the Routeburn Track. Detailed maps and GPS navigation for the hike: "Key Summit – Lake Marian Lookout Loop from Routeburn Track" 02:38 h 8.02 km. It was an excellent stop to break up our car trip and stretch our legs, and would probably be suitable for kids over the age of five or six if you were willing to take it slowly and could bring plenty of snacks.

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