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Mount Fox Route, West Coast

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Mount Fox RouteIntermediate

Submitted by Isaac Walker

Info Info
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Trail Information





West Coast

Fox Glacier

Front country - easily accessible

Out and Back


Native bush
Open tussock/grasslands
Open ridges/tops


5:00 (Slow)
3:30 (Moderate)
2:00 (Fast)



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From the trail head basically follow the DOC orange triangle markers and then the blue/orange poles above the treeline. This is a tough, very steep trail and it pays to keep an eye on the markers throughout the entire route - especially in the dark or bad conditions. The track starts off relatively easy but then quickly climbs up very sharply. The majority of the trail is under a tree canopy and has a lot of slippery rocks and hundreds of tree roots to conquer. There are very steep sections which require plenty of scrambling and some actual climbing skills up old creek beds and tree root systems. If it is or has been raining (quite likely on the west coast) then chances are these tree roots will be very slippery and there will be large bog/mud patches. Just keep an eye on the markers and you will be fine.

At around the 3km mark you will start to climb out the treeline and through an alpine tussock area. You will pass a trig point at 1021m to further climb to higher alpine tussock grassland with scattered small tarns. The summit is at 1345m in this flatter grassland area where the Doc sign is. If it is clear you will apparently get amazing views down onto Fox Glacier and the surrounding Southern Alps. Be prepared for sudden weather changes and snow storms. And be careful on the return route as the tree roots can be treacherous.

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Features of interest

Brilliant views of Fox Glacier and Southern Alps on a clear day.

Make Up of Run

Technical Single Track: 90%

Moderate Single Track: 10%

Route Data


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  • Access

    Track starts 3 km south of the township of Fox Glacier at the Thirsty Culvert sign/Welcome to Fox Glacier sign. It is signposted on the eastern side of the road.

    Small carpark directly across road from start of track. Parking for at least 5 cars.

    3 km

    5 minutes



  • Staying Safe


    Follow the markers!!! If in doubt back-track and look for the markers again. There is no mistakes on this route.

    Very patchy.

    Waterproof 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 blanket, Cellphone, Map, Headtorch and spare batteries, Crampons / microspikes (for winter conditions), Gaiters.

    No water available - carry all water.

    Very, very muddy and slippery after rain. In winter the route may become impassable due to snow and storms.

    Slippery roots, slippery moss covered rocks, shin-deep mud, very uneven ground, tussock covered tracks.

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