Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023


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I've done it Done

Salisbury over Arthur

Motueka, Tasman

Submitted by Mike Steel

Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023


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I've done it Done


Grunt Factor: 57

Gnarl Factor: 66








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Trail Map

Type of Run

Back country - remote



Native bush


Open tussock/grasslands

Open ridges/tops


Run Makeup


Easy Single Track

Moderate Single Track

Technical Single Track

Untracked / Route only

Average Uphill Gradient: +16.7%

Average Downhill Gradient: -15.3%


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Estimated Times to Run







This circuit from Flora Saddle car park is a variation on "Arthur and Gordons". It follows the main track over Flora Saddle, which then leads gently downstream beside Flora Stream past the upper Gridiron Hut and Rock Shelters, then swings south-west and climbs gently up beside Balloon Creek, passing the Growler Rock Shelter, and heading towards Salisbury Hut.

Just before the hut, take the sign-posted turn off left which leads up the Gordon's pyramid route along towards Mt Arthur (if you need water - carry on to Salisbury hut, in which case you have the option of heading up onto the Gordon's pyramid route via the Sphinx Valley Cave as marked on the map). As you approach Mt Arthur, leave the trail and strike out directly up the delightful north-east ridge. Watch for hidden potholes! The route up the ride is fairly straightforward, with one short steepish section half-way up. The ridge narrows with a big drop on one side nearer to the top and running up this section is quite exciting. From the summit, it's then an exhilarating downhill run all the way back to the start (via Mt Arthur Hut and Flora Saddle) on the well-marked and popular alpine trail. As a run, this particular circuit works better in the direction described here than in reverse.

Interesting karst landscape up high. Also very cute rock shelters passed on the way in. Wonderful views over the 'tablelands' and out to the coast.

A surprisingly big car park at the end of this steep twisting gravel road.

33 km

42 minutes




Carry a compass and map in case cloud comes in. Start early (if thick cloud comes in on the Gordons Pyramid Route it may be best to stay on the track all the way to the main Mt Arthur trail).


Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Survival blanket, Cellphone, Compass, Map.

Water from streams on the way in and at Salisbury Hut (and Mt Arthur Hut on the way down)

Will be in snow in winter! Best as a spring/summer/autumn run.

Watch for hidden potholes.

Trail Legend

Kate Annan

Kate Annan

has completed Salisbury over Arthur once in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

Awesome loop, tho I chickened out of the off route ridge climb due to winds and scarey looking terrain (I see someone has helpfully marked the turnoff with a wee cairn tho). This is definitely not one for the faint hearted. I would say this was 2/3 runnable and some hands and feet climbing on even the poled route. Made for a stunning overnighter.

Rebecca Sunderland

November 11, 2022

First third of the run is very runnable and there’s lots of cool things to see. Rock shelters and wee waterfalls. Second third of the run is very exposed but utterly beautiful. (Unfortunately the wind was so strong that I didn’t make the Mt Arthur summit). Final third of the run again is very runnable especially the last few kms down from Arthur’s Hut. One of my favourite runs to date, gorgeous views and varying terrain. What’s not to love!

Lauren Mai Anderson

November 14, 2021

Stunning day out! Such a lovely varied run, I especially enjoyed heading up the untracked spur to the summit, and then the sweet downhill from there. The beech forest single track climbing up from the low point was stunning too. Loads of bird life, but no whio today.

Katie Smith

December 29, 2020

Did it in reverse to the route described here. Made sure we had clear morning, could even see Mt Taranaki from the summits! Also saw Whio in the upper Flora Stream! Amazing loop with a great mix of track, terrain and scenery.

Sam Mowat

February 12, 2019

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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.

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