When is the best time to hike the Kepler Track?

The Kepler Track leads hikers on a journey of discovery through ancient silver beech-forests and up to the spectacular panoramic view-point of Mt Luxmore.

Located in the pristine alpine landscapes of Fiordland National Park, in New Zealand’s lower South Island, the Kepler Track is one of New Zealand’s nine Great Walks. The Kepler Track leads hikers on a journey of discovery through ancient silver beech-forests, past vast limestone cliffs, and up to the spectacular panoramic view-point of Mt Luxmore.

Great Walks season

Like many of New Zealand’s Great Walks, there is an ideal time to embark on your journey. One of the best times to experience the Kepler Track is during the Great Walks New Zealand season. This season runs from late October to late April; through New Zealand’s spring, summer and autumn.

A relative ‘youngster’ of Fiordland’s Great Walks (the track was custom-built in 1988) the Kepler Track offers well-maintained and easily accessible walkways and trails. Hiking the track in the Great Walks season, complete with warmer temperatures, makes the hike a more enjoyable experience.

The flora and fauna of the Kepler Track flourishes during this time of year. The sandy shores of Brod Bay, which forms part of the track, is another highlight during the warmer months – a dip in the lake is a welcome reward after hours of hiking.

Hiking the Kepler Track during this time of year also makes the trip a little easier, with plenty of regular transport options to get you to the start and end of the track. One thing to be aware of during the high season is the booking of huts. The Kepler Track can be busy with hikers during the warmer months, so it is advisable to book a Department of Conservation (DOC) hut or campsite well in advance if you are undertaking the full walk 3-4 day walk.

Off-peak Great Walks season

The Kepler Track is also open to hikers during the winter months. You’ll have the track pretty much to yourself and the feeling of wilderness is one-of-a-kind, but be prepared for snow and changeable, cooler weather.

The snow transforms the spectacular alpine scenery of the Fiordland region, so only experienced and well-equipped hikers are advised to embark on the Kepler Track outside the main Great Walks season. DOC provide regular track updates to keep you informed of track conditions and any safety issues.

Is a guided day hike right for you?

If you are limited on time or would prefer not to hike the 60km (37mi) full track, a guided day tour is a great option.

Exploring the Kepler Track with Trips & Tramps

Keen to experience the Kepler Track without the hassle? Trips and Tramps offer fully guided day tours of this stunning Great Walk. From a half-day fully guided tour, giving you an introduction to the beauty of the Fiordland region and all its hidden gems, to a luxurious heli-hike, soaring above hidden lakes and beech-forests before arriving at Mt Luxmore Hut complete with unbridled panoramic views, Trips & Tramps can help you enjoy an unforgettable Kepler Track experience at any time of year. 

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