Arrowsmith Range – Hakatare Reserve

The Arrowsmith Range is located deep in the Southern Alps surrounded by stunning mountain ranges, alpine glaciers and rolling river beds.

The bike loop starts at Arrowsmith Station; riding anti-clockwise it follows the gravel road adjacent to Lake Heron. It climbs up the valley through farm track and eventually along a ridgeline between the south branch of the Ashburton River and Cameron River.

The ridgeline leads up to the Wild Mans Brother Range. The terrain is reasonably undulating with a steady climb of approximately 10kms. There are superb views into the Cameron Glacier below the Arrowsmith Range.

Then it’s 7km to the South Branch of the Ashburton River and the Wild Man Hut.

Wild Mans Hut sleeps 6 and is equipped with cooking facilities. There is an option to carry on up the South Ashburton River and eventually cross the river to Hakatere Conservation Area.

It’s an hour up and back with further access via foot to the Ashburton Glacier. Leaving the hut after a good lunch the track heads east down the river, along farm track and river bed before entering a narrow gorge and finally bending north returning to the camping ground.


  • Loop track
  • Distance – 43kms
  • Timing – 4-6 hours
  • Lowest Point – 700m ASL
  • Highest Point – 1370m ASL
  • Type of Track:
  • 80% 4WD farm and river track.
  • 10% single track
  • 5% Metalled Road


  • Alpine environment
  • Inside Ride
  • Suitable for adventurous riders with a reasonable level of fitness
  • 90-95% rideable
  • 5% push

Getting there
Turn right from Ashburton Gorge Road on to Hakatere Heron Road and follow all the way to the Lake Heron Camping Ground.

Arrowsmith Station loop is on private property, phone ahead in case of track closures. Phone Sally and Eric - 03 303 9090. $10 fee for track use.

Accommodation – Arrowsmith Lodge sleeps 12 people with full services, including spa, BBQ and all bedding etc. If you wish to book contact the Methven i-SITE 03 302 8955 or come and see us 160 Main Street, Methven.

This information is taken straight from the Chill Adventures Magazine  – new out this summer. It contains biking information on lots of tracks around the South Island.

It is a must have for any mountain biking people. For your free copy please call into the Methven i-SITE – 160 Main Street, Methven, or grab one from all good bike shops around New Zealand.