A very prominent snow-capped mountain summit with views forever, towers above the West Coast highway near Porter’s Pass.

Mt Enys (2,195 metres), in the Craigieburn Forest Park, has the singular honour of being the highest foothill summit accessible from a major highway in the South Island. From Porter Heights ski field it is an exhilarating traverse over intermediate peaks to reach the crest of Craigieburn Range and survey the scene. A jumbled sky scape of snowy peaks crowd in, from Mt Rolleston near Arthur’s Pass, to Mt Cook well to the south. Far below is Lake Coleridge and the braided shingle beds of the Rakaia and Wilberforce rivers. Eastward lies the green and brown patchwork of the Canterbury plains merging with the blue of the Pacific Ocean.

Bus Pass New Zealand

Craigieburn Forest Park sprawls over the broad slopes of this eastern foothills range of the Southern Alps, 1 ½ hours drive from Christchurch on S.H.73. The park offers a range of short walks, climbing, tramping, hunting and camping with excellent access roads. A system of walking tracks crosses the park, with links to routes up the picturesque Harper, Ryton and Wilberforce valleys. Most trips across the range are possible in an energetic weekend. The Cass-Lagoon Saddle Track is the most popular tramp. It is a moderate 2-3 day traverse of three river valleys and two saddles with excellent huts and grand views. Rock climbing is popular at Castle Hill where immense limestone outcrops have been sculpted by the elements into weird and wonderful forms.

The Range is best known for four club ski fields, which are open to the public during the winter season. Mt Olympus on the western flank is a popular adventure playground with perfect powder slopes. Craigieburn has superb extreme downhill skiing. Broken River has three powder-filled basins and uncrowded slopes, and Mt Cheeseman has uninterrupted views along the entire range.

Take a close look at the Craigieburn Forest Park on your way to Arthur’s Pass. It has impressive mountainous terrain. Describing the range as ‘foothills’ seems an understatement.

The park offers year round pleasure for all outdoor enthusiasts – a park for all seasons.

By | 2015-11-20T16:18:11+00:00 October 7th, 2014|Forest Parks|0 Comments

About the Author:

Danny de Hek
Like most people, I have many passions, goals and dreams. As a self made business professional, my focus is helping my clients, associates and friends, build, strengthen and maintain their success. It would be fair to say I am in the full time business of building relationships and feel my purpose and skill is connecting the right people with the right people. My professional work tends to dominate my personal life, to the horror of my partner and business mentor. They both fully support me yet give me the hard truths when I need to hear this. I am always investing in my personal development to have a fulfilled work/life balance. I enjoy Target Shooting, Hiking & Mountain Biking to clear the brain and to take the guilt away when indulging at a quirky cafe for a cooked breakfast or brunch. My passion for travelling has seen me experience the world on many occasions, my next adventure will be doing the Tibet Rail Journey on the Qinghai-Tibet Railway from Lhasa to Golmud as long as they have Wi-Fi aboard ;-) I have many goals I still wish to achieve but am pretty chuffed that I have accomplished so many of these already.

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