Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023

Beginner - Intermediate

I've done it Done

Save Trail Save

Cromwell Gorge and Cairnmuir Loop

Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023

Beginner - Intermediate

I've done it Done

Save Trail Save

Notice More info

Grunt Factor: 35

Gnarl Factor: 16





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

Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible


Very hilly


Open farmlands

Open tussock/grasslands

Open ridges/tops

Run Makeup


Gravel Road

Farm Road / 4WD Track

Untracked / Route only

Average Uphill Gradient: +13.6%

Average Downhill Gradient: -12.0%


Login as a VIP to see the trailhead information.

Estimated Times to Run







Starting at the DOC carpark, head up the 4WD track, at about 1.5km you'll come to a wee saddle - the DOC track heads up the hill to the right (this is where you'll come out), but stick to the road and head down to the left. You'll come to a gate at the next saddle and go through this and stay on this track for the next 8km or so as you weave in and out of the gullies on your way down the lake. You'll eventually get to the bluffs, at this point follow the track up the hill. This is the big climb, pretty simple to follow the track, just plod your way up! At the top, go through the gate and head down the DOC track back to the carpark. There are signposts and yellow markers on your way down.

Cairnmuir Slip - large reinforcements to stop the hillside from sliding into the lake and busting the Clyde Dam... Central Otago views.

There is a parking area just off Cornish Point Rd. Small, but nice and clear, never had any security issues.

11 km

13 minutes


Name: Al Hamilton - Cairnmuir Station
Telephone: 0274791858



Waterproof leggings, Thermal leggings, Windproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map.

Very little, especially in summer.

Snow on tops at times, very windy and exposed often on the tops.

You and Cromwell Gorge and Cairnmuir Loop

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

Think it's worth noting that half of this track is on private land and is marked as such. There are no entry signs at the split point from the DoC track and at the bottom of the bluffs.

Kirsten Matheson

January 11, 2023

3 stars only because I got lost! Somehow lost the track going up from the bluff. Managed to pick up random farm track taking me down to Paterson Road. Thankfully I was prepared , I was out there for awhile!

Rebecca Sinclair

August 2, 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.

Cairnmuir Hill

Cairnmuir Hill

Length: 26.7km

Level: Intermediate

Cairnmuir to Clyde

Cairnmuir to Clyde

Length: 26.9km

Level: Beginner - Intermediate

Other trails nearby
Bannockburn Tailings Track

Bannockburn Tailings Track

Length: 5.0km

Level: Beginner

Mt Difficulty Loop

Mt Difficulty Loop

Length: 28.3km

Level: Intermediate

Grandview Ridge Track

Grandview Ridge Track

Length: 38.0km

Level: Intermediate

Aurora and Kanuka Loops

Aurora and Kanuka Loops

Length: 16.0km

Level: Intermediate

Find more trails and peaks nearby