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Isthmus Peak, Otago

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Isthmus PeakBeginner - Intermediate

Submitted by Mal Law

Info Info
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Trail Information







Front country - easily accessible

Out and Back


Native bush
Open farmlands
Open tussock/grasslands
Open ridges/tops

Beginner - Intermediate

4:30 (Slow)
3:15 (Moderate)
2:00 (Fast)



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This is an easy-to-follow slog up and fun run down route.

From the car park cross the road and follow the poles alongside the road for maybe 100m - these lead you to the start of the track proper which is poled all the way to the summit. En route, you'll skirt a nice remnant stand of native beech and traverse across open farmland before starting the steady, occasionally steep, zig-zag ascent on the farm track.

When you reach 1340m altitude you'll come to an obvious junction with Isthmus Peak signposted right. Follow this trail, now quite rough, as it undulates along the ridge to terminate at the summit of Isthmus Peak. Drink in the stunning views, snap a few shots (not forgetting to post them later on this trail guide!) and head back down the way you came. A great day out with the satisfaction of bagging a significant peak thrown in for good measure!

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Features of interest

Stunning views all the way! They just get better as you get higher.

Make Up of Run

Technical Single Track: 5%

Moderate Single Track: 15%

Easy Single Track: 25%

Farm Road / 4WD Track: 55%

Route Data


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Wild Explorers

I did it!
  • Access

    Start point is the Isthmus Peak trailhead car park on the lake side of Makarora - Lake Hawea Rd (SH6) a few kms south of 'The Neck'

    There is a small car park at the side of the road - room for only 6-8 vehicles and as this track is becoming more popular it'd pay to get there early during the busy summer season

    33 km

    28 minutes



  • Staying Safe


    Make navigation of this route super-easy by using the Capra app on your phone. View on Capra .

    Just follow the poles and signposts - easy.

    Generally good.

    Thermal leggings, Lightweight fleece top, Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Survival blanket, Cellphone, Map, Headtorch and spare batteries.

    There is NO water along the way - take your own and if planning a long day in summer make sure you have plenty of it.

    Typical Otago - can be very hot in summer, very cold any time of year. In winter expect ice and snow, take micro-spikes in case.

    Nothing out of the ordinary

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