Last Updated: 19th May 2024


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New Chums Loop

Arrowtown, Otago

Submitted by Mal Law

Last Updated: 19th May 2024


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I've done it Done


Grunt Factor: 12 ?

Gnarl Factor: 26 ?








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Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible


Undulating, some big hills

Dog Friendly

Native bush


Open tussock/grasslands

Run Makeup


Farm Road / 4WD Track

Easy Single Track

Moderate Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +11.8%

Average Downhill Gradient: -14.2%


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Estimated Times to Run







From the car park head downstream on the Queenstown Trail for 1km before turning left to cross the river on a bridge.

On the far side of the bridge head straight on (away from the river) uphill on Tobins Track. This is a steady climb on 4WD track. A little over 1km up the hill keep a very sharp eye out for a single track trail on your left. It leaves the main trail at about an 8 o'clock angle and is marked with a couple of orange triangles on a gate, but was not signposted last time I went this way.

The trail heads uphill through fairly open scrub/grass and affords great views of the surrounding mountains and Lake Hayes. After about 500m the trail levels out a little and you'll see a couple of orange triangles on a pole, leading you off left. This is NOT the way to go. Instead stay right and you'll soon pick up more orange marker poles as the trail tops out and then starts to drop quite steeply into New Chums Gully, eventually crossing the small creek at the bottom.

After crossing this creek and another small one just beyond, a short climb brings you out above the Arrow River, with spectacular views of the bridge that you will soon be using to cross it. A sharp descent takes you to the river, which you now cross by said bridge. On the far side climb a short way and follow the trail as it turns left to follow above the river.

The last few hundred metres follow a still-working old pipeline. You can either wade across the river or head right to pick up a small footbridge a hundred metres upstream. On the far side a left turn takes you back to the start point.

Arrowtown is full of old mining history.
Spectacular autumn colours if you're lucky enough to be doing this around April.

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.

Plenty of parking available in the free all day riverside car park but it gets busy in the summer months so an early start is advisable. Or look for an alternative park.

1 km

2 minutes




Keep a sharp eye out for the left turn off Tobins Track and make sure to stay right at the fork in the trail some 500m beyond this. Otherwise the trail is well signed and easy to follow.

Generally good.

Short-sleeved thermal top, Windproof jacket, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map

No drinking water, so carry your own.

The trail can be icy in winter (Arrowtown doesn't see much sun!) and a bit muddy after heavy rain.

Nothing out of the ordinary.

Trail Legend

Janette Gwilliam

Janette Gwilliam

has completed New Chums Loop 8 times in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

A splendid wee circuit from Arrowtown. The turnoff from Tobins Track is now very clearly marked with bright signs so no chance of missing it.

Mike Steel

February 8, 2022

Wee gem, ran it in terrible conditions with mud, autumn leaves and raining. Only made it better (but slower) in my opinion. Fun times for a short track.

Paul Nicholas

April 27, 2021

A great wee grunt of a loop. Loved the single track but it is over grown in parts. Super handy from Arrowtown with a great finish along the Arrow river.

Thomas Ricketts

January 12, 2021

Lovely loop, great views. Pretty overgrown for a good portion of the single track. Making it less runnable than normal. If I do this loop again I would do the it clockwise as then you would have a lovely runnable descent back to the carpark. And keep the slow section for the climb.

Lauren Mai Anderson

December 28, 2020

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