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Fiordland Tramping Trip

Trip code: FT2022/1
Expedition Rating: Extreme Travel
Leaving: 06 Nov 2022 Starts: Te Anau
Returning: 15 Nov 2022 Ends: Te Anau

Hiking, Birding, Swimming , Kayaking , Birding, Photography, Botany, History, Cetacean watching

Both the George Sound and the Dusky Bay tracks in Fiordland traverse some amazingly beautiful river valleys and alpine country. They require a reasonable standard of fitness and experience. Logistically they are challenging and this limits the number of people hiking these tracks but this expedition provides the necessary transport and the support in the Fiords for you to be able to complete both the trips. 


 Note: This is a tramp for experienced persons with a good standard of fitness and experience in route finding and alpine traverses. All participants will be asked to provide a brief resume detailing their experience prior to their booking being accepted.  DoC do not maintain or promote either of these routes.  You can expect severe and extreme weather events during the tramp, participants must be prepared for that with good quality equipment. (see suggested Mountain Safety gear list on our website).


This is not a “guided walk”, rather it is fully supported.  We will have an experienced person to accompany you and assist with route finding and logistics. He/she will also carry Iridium phone for weather forecasts and emergency contact with Strannik if necessary. We will provide detailed maps and notes for the route. Participants are required to provide their own quality specialist equipment including tent, sleeping bag, cooker etc GPS and emergency locator beacon.

Day 1 Te Anau to Lake Hankinson Hut

You will meet in Te Anau (time and place to be advised). Prior to going to Te Anau you will have been asked to courier spare clothes and equipment not needed on this first leg of the trip to Strannik Ocean Voyages and these will be on board for you when you arrive in George Sound.  You are also expected to provide food for the first 3 days (George Sound Track)

You will be transferred by to Te Anau Downs and from there across to the head of  Middle Fiord on Lake Te Anau.  The track from the Middle Fiord of Lake Te Anau to Lake Hankinson is signposted from the beach and takes 15 minutes. It is not possible to walk around Lake Hankinson so the concessionaire will transport you up the Lake to the Lake Hankinson Hut where you will stay overnight. 


Day 2  Lake Hankinson Hut to Henry Saddle. 

Est. 7 Hours 

It is about a 2.5 hour walk to Lake Thomson Hut from the Lake Hankinson Hut.  It is five minutes from the hut to the first three-wire crossing; then one hour to the second three-wire crossing. From the second crossing the route follows around the north side of Lake Thomson to its head, and from there across the Wapiti River flats to reach the hut. 

From Thomson Hut the route continues up the valley, to Henry Pass (830m), taking around 4½ hours. The route around Deadwood Lagoon is very boggy and can be flooded after heavy rain.  We plan to camp (tents) on the east side of the Henry Pass.   


Day 3 Henry Pass to George Sound. 

Est. 5 – 6 hours

From Henry Pass the route drops steeply to the valley floor, then follows Katherine Creek to Lake Katherine, taking around four hours. It is necessary to wade into the lake in one place. Safety chains are provided in some areas around Lake Katherine from there it descends to the George Sound Hut. Strannik will be waiting for you on your arrival at George Sound. Enjoy a hot shower and clean clothes and a sumptuous dinner. You will have earned it. 


Day 4 -6  George Sound – Dusky Sound 


Cruise from George Sound south to Dusky Sound .. enjoy a day exploring some of the historic sites in Dusky Sound, before starting the Dusky Bay Track on Day 7. 


Day 7 Supper Cove to Loch Maree

6 – 8 Hours.


The track starts at the Supper Cove hut on a small terrace just south of the Hilda Burn.  We will check the tides, if possible we will run you up the Seaforth River by Zodiac to “the landing” which will eliminate a rough section of the track.  The next section of the track follows the track cut by the West Coast miners in 1903.  The track then climbs steadily to the Lock Maree Hut. 


Day 8 Loch Maree Hut to Kintail Hut 

6-8 Hours


From Loch Maree Hut the track heads along the Seaforth River to Deadwood Creek. This section is rough underfoot and prone to flooding and can be difficult in wet weather.  From Deadwood Creek to the Kenneth Burn the track gets easier as it passes through several clearings. After crossing the Kenneth Burn  the track climbs through a gorge to the outlet of Gair Loch. From here the track follows up the Seaforth River to the head of Gear Loch and the Kintail Hut 


Day 9  Kintail Hut to Upper Spey Hut

5-7 hours 

From the hut re cross the Seaforth River and follow the markers up the true right of the Kintail Stream. The steep climb to the Centre Pass traverses forest and herb fields and some spectacular views of Geair Loch.  From Centre Pass the track is marked by snow poles as it descends steeply through tussockkand and alpine shrubland to the head of the Warren Burn and the Upper Sprey Hut.   


Day 10 Upper Spey Hut to Wilmot Pass Road – West Arm Manapouri – Te Anau. 

4-5 hours tramping 


From the Hut the track cross’s a large swampy clearing and descends to a walk wire over the Spey River. It then follows the true left of the River through beech and ribbon wood forest to the Dashwood Stream. From here it is a short walk to the Wilmot Pass Road. It is a further 45 min walk to West Arm where you will be met and Transferred across Lake Manapouri  by boat to Manapouri and onto Te Anau where you trip ends.  



$3200.00 NZDpp
There are 4 Double/Twin cabins available on Strannik. "Discovery" and "Resolution" could be twin share (2 lower berths) or it can be configured as a large double bed (it is your choice). "Karluk" and "Endurance" have a bunk-bed with a double lower berth and a top bunk. There is a 3% discount for the top bunk. It is easy to access and does have storm boards if required. All cabins have a private bathroom with a toilet and shower.

Price Includes:

All meals both on Strannik and food provided for the Dusky Bay Track.  Accommodation on board Strannik (4 nights), remainder in Huts/tents. Hut pass’s provided where required.  Complimentary wine and soft drinks (limited selection available), Internet access for Email if required while on board.

Trip Info

Proposed expedition leader: Rodney Russ
Visas required: New Zealand

Requirements may vary depending on what passport you are travelling with. It is your responsibility to check to ensure you are compliant.

Trip Map

Map for trip: Fiordland Tramping Trip

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