Experience the joy of finding little-known, hidden places, in the wilderness zone between Reefton on the West Coast, and Lewis Pass in the Southern Alps.

The Victoria Forest Park is a seldom-visited mountainous expanse that has the honour of being the largest forest park in the country. The park contains some of our finest beech forests and fascinating mining relics of the historic Reefton quartz gold workings. There are heaps of activities to cater for all tastes, including walks along old mining trails, tramps over steep tussock ridges, hunting for chamois and red deer, fishing for rainbow and brown trout, gold panning, camping, 4WD trips and horse-trekking.

Reefton is a suitable place to begin your explorations of the park. This pleasant town got its name from the gold-bearing quartz reefs in the area. It is the centre of some great walking country leading up towards the Lewis Pass. Reefton installed electric street lighting in 1888 before the rest of New Zealand.

Bus Pass New Zealand

The Big River Track beginning 11 km south of Reefton gives access to a wealth of historic mining sites, and attractive wilderness areas. The massive poppet head structure over the Big River Mine is still standing, and highlights the laborious task of lifting ore from the deep mine shafts, to be crushed by stamper batteries.

Lake Stream is a pleasant jaunt into the isolated sub-alpine environment of Victoria Forest Park. The track starts 11 km west of Springs Junction, plunging into charming moss-draped beech forest and up to a tiny bivouac nestled against the bush-edge. Lake Cristabel is a 2-3 day tramp leading to a magnificent blue gem of a lake, with views over the entire Victoria Range. The most accessible peak in the park is Mt Haast, which can be climbed in a day from the Inangahua Bridge.

Our biggest forest park has stunning views, wonderful grassy flats and green canopies in valleys like Lake Stream. Climbing to the rugged ridge tops is a serious business as the route scrambles over bluffs and razorback ridges.

It’s a big challenge to conquer the big park.

By | 2016-11-26T18:59:29+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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