Last Updated: 23rd Apr 2024

Intermediate - Experienced

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I've done it Done

Brow Peak Mini Mission

Arrowtown, Otago

Submitted by Mat Tyrrell

Last Updated: 23rd Apr 2024

Intermediate - Experienced

Save Trail Save

I've done it Done

Open

Grunt Factor: 59 ?

Gnarl Factor: 95 ?

21.0km

1610m

1610m

1450m

  

  

  

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Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible

Loop

Mountainous

Open tussock/grasslands

Open ridges/tops

Run Makeup

15%
10%
75%

Moderate Single Track

Technical Single Track

Untracked / Route only

Average Uphill Gradient: +16.4%

Average Downhill Gradient: -13.6%

Trailhead

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Estimated Times to Run

6:00

Slow

4:00

Moderate

2:30

Fast

Starting from Arrowtown you actually have a choice of clockwise or anticlockwise around the Sawpit Gully track - anti is steep but shorter, clockwise is still reasonably steep but some undulating track too, a bit longer, more varied views if you're not local. You are heading to the turnoff for Big Hill (is signposted off the Sawpit Gully trail).
From here follow the obvious trail and head up a steepish short (15m) climb - from here the Big Hill (obvious trail) heads right, you want to head left along a less distinct track. This quickly points up and you follow the goat track roughly heading towards an obvious big rock. Take plenty of chances to catch your breath and catch the view behind you! This is a technicalish and steep climb of around 4km and 800m elevation. You are heading towards an obvious ridgeline - once there the view north opens up to amazing backcountry.
From here you are following the undulating ridgeline west for around 6km, there isn't much of a distinct trail to follow but there is the odd cairn and warratah. Be careful around some of the small bluffs, if unsure take the north side as it is generally less exposed than the south. This is a time consuming part of the run as navigating the tussocks can take a while, and there are some serious climbs left especially as you near Coronet Peak ski area.
Once Coronet Peak ski area becomes visible (from the top of the last climb), you will see the ski boundary fence below you and a clear trail (Corrotown MTB trail/Slip Saddle) - you should be able to follow a ridgeline around to it.
Once there, the trail is clearly visible as it is a well used bike trail - please give way to any bikes heading down there as it is STEEP and many riders would not be able to stop or give way to you through no fault of their own. It is very slippy if wet or frosts have been evident - you will not stay upright on the first 100m or so - be warned! It is however not exposed so the worst you get is a muddy bum :)
This trail ends at a viewpoint looking out to the East, with the well trodden Bush Creek trail heading back to Arrowtown to the West, There are numerous small creek crossings here but is is mostly downhill and an easy 6km back to Arrowtown through some amazing valley terrain.

Route can be done in reverse, and Slip Saddle/Corrotown is probably easier done up rather than down!

Not advised in strong wind, low visibility or snow due to exposure on the ridgeline.

This trail includes the peak Brow Peak.

The view of the Wakatipu!

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.

Heaps of free parking here or in the main (also free) Arrowtown tourist parks. All safe, it's Arrowtown!

1 km

3 minutes

Unknown

No

Hard.

As noted in the description, just near Coronet Peak but that was just me trying to find an easy way across.

Generally good.

Thermal leggings, Lightweight fleece top, Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Personal Locator Beacon (PLB), Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Survival bag, Cellphone, Compass, Map, Headtorch and spare batteries

None for the initial 15km or so, but Bush Creek is fast flowing and not farmland (as far as I know!).

Slip Saddle is pretty tricky when wet or there has been frosts (is South facing so does not get sun for a good portion of the year).
Bush Creek never gets dangerous to cross so should be fine.
Would not recommend route in snow or strong winds due to exposure.

Exposure on the south side of the ridgeline, but common sense really.

Arrowtown Bakery
1 Buckingham St (the main street)
Pies. Pies. Pies. And pastries if that's your thing. But pies.

The Fork & Tap
51 Buckingham Street
Beer. Great choice of local breweries.

Trail Legend

John Iseli

John Iseli

has completed Brow Peak Mini Mission once in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

I have done this route 3 times and I think it is definately better in reverse for two main reasons. First, it means you go up Bush Creek and Slip Saddle/coronet first, where you might meet fast decending bikes - the fact you are going up means you stand a sporting chance of seeing them before they hit you! Second, the ridge section view is much better as you will be looking away from the commercialisation of Coronet Peak. Either way, it is a superb outing.

Stephen Dunnett

February 27

Exceptional loop, big climb rewarded with big views. Technical downhill

Arron Perriam

March 5, 2022

Wow- Got everything! The best Arrowtown trail of my trip for sure.

Mike McManaway

January 1, 2022

Awesome adventure, the rain came pouring down just as I got off the ridgeline so the descent from Coronet was more of a slide than a run! The single track across the ridge is epic and the views amazing. I also loved the cruisy finish along Bush Creek to the end.

Issy Whitaker

April 14, 2021

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