Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023

Beginner - Intermediate

Save Trail Save

I've done it Done

Sweet Sinclair Summit

Akaroa, Canterbury

Submitted by Stephanie Berry

Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023

Beginner - Intermediate

Save Trail Save

I've done it Done


Grunt Factor: 13 ?

Gnarl Factor: 16 ?








Login as a VIP to see driving directions, distance and time.

Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible

Out and Back

Very hilly

Native bush

Open farmlands

Open tussock/grasslands

Open ridges/tops


Run Makeup


Farm Road / 4WD Track

Untracked / Route only

Average Uphill Gradient: +9.6%

Average Downhill Gradient: -9.6%


Login as a VIP to see the trailhead information.

Estimated Times to Run







This is 99% easy to navigate. Simply follow the marked 4wd track Te Ara Pataka as it zig zags its way up towards Mt Sinclair.

Approx 1.4kms in you will meet the junction with the track coming up from Montgomery Reserve. Hop over the stile and continue your climb. You will pass through the amazing Totara graveyard and then into regenerating bush. Take some moments to soak in the amazing views out across Lake Forysth and to imagine the amazing Totaras as they would have been when standing.

At about 3.8kms you will cross yet another stile and Pegasus Bay will come into full view. Another 300 metres along the track at 4.1kms (ish) you need to keep an eye out for a tall dead tree on your right. Directly opposite this is on your left is an old not so obvious 4wd track. You need to head up this a climb through the fence. Approx 100m up this track you need to veer right and start making your way through the bushes and spear grass to the summit. There is a track but it isn't very obvious.

It's about another 200m to the summit. Soak in the amazing views out to Lake Ellesmere to the south, the Southern Alps to the west, Akaroa Harbour to the east and the magnificence of Pegasus Bay, the Kaikouras and beyond to the North. When you've refueled then turn around and retrace your steps back the way you came.

This trail includes the peak Mount Sinclair (Banks Peninsula).

Native reserves, Totara graveyard ... the remains of giant Totara trees that were felled over 100 years ago and still lie where they fell. A reminder of humans' destructive power and the strength of Totara as a timber.

If you know of any public toilets near the trail start or on the route, please login and then let us know so we can update this section.

Enough parking for half a dozen cars.

21 km

16 minutes




Keep an eye out for that dead tree on your right. If in doubt just head to the summit ... the wild deer make tracks through the bushes all the time so as long as you head in the right direction you'll get there eventually.

Generally good.

Short-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map

No water available

Closed during lambing. Check the DOC website for specific dates.

Trail Legend


Sonia Panapa

has completed Sweet Sinclair Summit once in the last year.

Learn about Trail Legends.

You and Sweet Sinclair Summit

As a VIP member you can record private notes for this trail, see all of your times and more.

Register Now

Already have an account? Login now

Trail Reviews

Spaniard Grass - you are not my friend! :-)

Mike McManaway

August 1, 2021

I always enjoy the views on this stretch of the hills. Have been curious about the Pettigrews Rd track as I have only gone down the “normal” track through Montgomery Reserve with the giant totara. Turns out Pettigrews Rd track is just a gentle grassy farm track. While I’m not a huge fan of farm tracks (which most of this run is), I did enjoy the gentle incline - easy to run up and fun to zoom down!

Matt Halverson

February 6, 2021

This trail has big views all around. I took about 25 photos along the way of valleys, Totoroa graveyard, cloud covered trig point, low evening cloud below the trail path. A visual feast for sure. Really appreciated the detailed description that helped me find the turning point to go up to the trip at 4.1km point, thanks Stephanie.

John OConnell

November 26, 2020

Login to submit a review

Trail Running Community

Find people who are interested in or have completed this trail run.

You must register or login to view this feature.

Register Now

Overlapping Trails

These overlap with this trail to some degree. You may wish to combine them but please note that to qualify for FKTs on these runs you should record a separate activity for each.

Mt Fitzgerald & Mt Sinclair

Mt Fitzgerald & Mt Sinclair

Length: 14.8km

Level: Intermediate

Summit Walkway

Summit Walkway

Length: 34.0km

Level: Intermediate

Montgomery Park Reserve

Montgomery Park Reserve

Length: 12.0km

Level: Intermediate

Banks Peninsula Ultra Beer Run

Banks Peninsula Ultra Beer Run

Length: 50.0km

Level: Experienced

Other trails nearby
Child's Play

Child's Play

Length: 7.5km

Level: Beginner

Moa Point Loop

Moa Point Loop

Length: 4.9km

Level: Beginner

Otepatotu “Place of the Fairies”

Otepatotu “Place of the Fairies”

Length: 2.0km

Level: Beginner

Woodills Womble

Woodills Womble

Length: 7.0km

Level: Beginner

Find more trails and peaks nearby