Christchurch - Canterbury


  • Variety of walking and biking tracks
  • Picnic sites
  • Superb views at hill summit



Enjoy the sheltered forest valleys and rocky tussock slopes of this alpine park. Follow a short nature trail or stretch out along a four-hour hike.

This conservation park has something for everyone. The variety of vegetation is matched by the range of walking and biking tracks. It is a place of extremes.

Sheltered valleys and lower hills are clothed almost entirely in mountain beech, while forces of erosion have crumbled the mountain tops to create Craigieburn’s characteristic rock scree slopes and fields.Most of the walks are centred on a small corner of the large park, which is close to State Highway 73.

Amenities here include picnic sites, a shelter, camping areas and the Environmental Education Centre. Two ski field roads give access to the upper valley basins.

For experienced mountain bikers, the roads to the ski fields and a number of the walking tracks provide quite a challenge. The roads and trails can be combined to form an exciting two to four-hour ride.

Short walks range from a 20-minute nature walk to a three to four-hour walk to the summit of a hill offering superb views of the Craigieburn and Torlesse Ranges and the limestone landscape of Castle Hill Basin. The walks pass through experimental plantings of pine from the 1960s and 70s, extensive native beech forests and, on the higher slopes, beautiful mountain tussock and herb fields.

Above the tussock the harsh winter conditions have created rocky scree fields. Dracophyllum Flat Walk, one to two hours return, leads to a popular picnic spot. The track leaves Jacks Pass and gradually descends to Broken River, which is crossed on a pole bridge. Five minutes up through mountain beech, the track opens out onto a sheltered clearing. This beautiful spot is covered by red-brown Dracophyllum, native tussock and a host of small herbs and ground covering plants.

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