We took a punt on this place. We’d seen some favourable comments on our trusty NZMCA app but also saw that it was 39km down an unsealed, no exit road off an already long Te Anau to Queenstown road. Would getting off the beaten track be worth it? It definitely was! We were rewarded with the most incredible lake and mountain views and an expansive area to choose a patch to set up for the night. We were practically neighbour-free!
Peter Jackson must have also considered it a gem, using it for many scenes in the first Lord of the Rings movie- The Fellowship of the Ring. Was it serendipity that when we switched on our TV- this movie was playing?? We saw people enjoying the lake fishing, kayaking and boating and others tramping around the various tracks from here. We mountain biked one track along the forest fringed lake edge, looking for film familiar places, humming the LoTR then tune as we went! The boys on the look out for wizards, hobbits and Orcs!
- head for the North (2nd Lake down the track) rather than South Lake- much more scenic and spacious.
- Remember it’s a DOC site so expect nothing more than long-drop loos!
- Expect everything on the exterior of your vehicle to get dusty on the road in- very dusty!
- Don’t tell too many people about this place. It’s “my precious”- to use Gandalf’s words, “keep it secret, keep it safe!”