HikeSouth: 4 day/3 night Milford Track Walk - Freedom Plus
Milford Track – Freedom Plus
Cruise across Lake Te Anau to the start of your walk, winding along the Clinton Valley, across the Mackinnon Pass, descending the Arthur River Valley to infamous Sandfly Point and finally emerging into majestical Milford Sound.There's a postcard shot around every corner on this world-famous track.
- From Lake Te Anau to Milford Sound
- A moderate to high level of fitness is required.
The Freedom Plus package includes 1 nights bunk room accommodation in Te Anau, 3 nights on the trail, shuttle from Te Anau to Te Anau Downs, boat from Te Anau Downs to the start of the track at Glade Wharf, boat from Sandfly Point to Milford Sound, cruise on Milford Sound and shuttle from Milford Sound to Te Anau.
What to Bring:
First thing is make sure you have well worn good fitting boots or tramping shoes.
Suggested list of what to bring;
Pair of shorts, trousers.
Thick woolen or fleece top.
Thermal long johns and shirt.
Socks, underwear and handkerchief.
Small towel or flannel.
Warm hat and light gloves.
Waterproof coat with hood.
Favourite boots or walking shoes.
Pair of light shoes or sandals.
Pack with waterproof liner.
Small personal torch, water bottle.
Personal medicine, toilet bag
Insect repellent, sunblock.
Camera and film.
Some people like gaiters and others use walking sticks.
Freedom Walk customers need to add a sleeping bag and kitchen equipment to the list above except on the Tuatapere Hump Ridge Track where the huts have a full compliment of cooking and kitchen equipment available. Gas cookers are also provided on the Milford, Routeburn and Kepler tracks.
Accommodation in Te Anau at a backpackers is included in this package.
Clinton, Mintaro and Dumpling Huts are public DOC Great Walk huts. Bookings are essential during summer. There is no power but there is lighting and heating in the main kitchen / dining area, flush toilets are in an outside ablution block, gas cooking facilities are provided during summer months. Bunk rooms have communal sleeping with mattresses provided.
A moderate level of fitness is required for most of our walks. To enjoy the walk customers need to be able to walk for 4 - 7 hours over 12 – 21 km ( 7 – 13 miles ) for 3 to 5 days. The tracks are a mixture of natural bush and mountain tracks. Customers need to carry their own pack from hut to hut which is likely to be 8 to 15 kg.
Children aged 17 and under and must be accompanied by an adult. Multi day tracks are not typically recommended for children under 10.
DAY 1: Arrive in Te Anau Stay the night at Lakefront Backpackers in Te Anau. Collect your Great Walks pass and trail map from Department of Conservation (DoC) office, Lakefront Drive Te Anau.
DAY 2: Te Anau, Te Anau Downs, Clinton Hut
Walk 1 - 1.5 hours / 5km ( 3 m )
Bus from DoC office at 9.45am to Te Anau Downs boat harbour, and catch a launch to the northern end of Lake Te Anau. From the wharf walk past the historic Glade House, cross the emerald green Clinton River by swing bridge then up the Clinton Valley to Clinton Hut.
DAY 3: Clinton Hut, Mintaro Hut
Walk 5 – 6 hours, 16.5 km (9.9 m )
A gradual climb follows the Clinton River, Beech forest gets more luxuriant the further you go and the valley walls climb steeper and higher. Soon after Hirere Falls you may get your first view of Mackinnon Pass and the Pompolona ice field.
Passing the turn off to the Pompolona Hut for guided walkers it is a short climb before descending to a swing bridge with a 40 minute walk through bush for your second night on the Milford Track at Mintaro Hut.
DAY 4: Mintaro Hut, Dumpling Hut
Walk 6 - 7 hours, 14 km ( 8.4 m )
The most challenging day, but also the most rewarding. Climbing a series of zig zags as the valley floor drops away beneath your feet your reach Mackinnon's memorial cairn. Some excellent views of Lake Mintaro and Clinton Canyon.
Look out from 12 second drop to the Arthur Valley beneath you before commencing the final climb to the highest point of the track and the Pass Day Shelter ( 1069 metres ). Many say the nearby toilet has some of the best views in Fiordland!
The track to Dumpling Hut drops steadily down over rocky, uneven terrain with spectacular views of towering rock cliffs, glacial streams, moss covered forest, a cascading waterfall section and have your first view of Sutherland Falls. The side trip ( 1.5 hour round trip) to the mighty Sutherland Falls is well worth the effort. From the turn off the Dumpling Hut is about 20 minutes along the track.
DAY 5: Dumpling Hut, Sandfly Point
Walk 5 to 6 hours, 18 km ( 10.8 m )
Follow the Arthur River as it gently descends to Milford Sound. Walk through beech forest to the historic Boatshed. From here cross the river by swing bridge and carry on to MacKay Falls, Bell Rock, Poseidon Creek and Giant Gate Falls - a good stop for lunch with toilets and shelter. The final stretch of the track follows tranquil Lake Ada to Sandfly Point. From here you catch the launch at 2pm to Milford Sound for the 3pm Crusie on Milford Sound then coach back to Te Anau.,
Please note. The Milford Track has several creeks that can be prone to flooding and it crosses many avalanche paths. Care must be taken in inclement weather
Departure Dates: From late October to April we have regular departures that depend on availability and schedule of services. Great Walks season is from 26th October 2009 to 26th April 2010 and 27th October 2010 to 26th April 2011
Te Anau has daily shuttle services from Queenstown and Invercargill. We are happy to help with transport arrangements.
Transport sectors for the Milford Track Freedom Plus:
- Bus from DoC Te Anau to Te Anau Downs - 27km, 1/2 hour trip - Departs from Fiordland National Park Visitor Centre at 9.45am.
- Boat Te Anau Downs to Glade Wharf - 1 1/2 hour trip - Departs from Te Anau Downs Wharf daily at 10.30am.
- Boat Sandfly Point to Milford Sound - 20 minute trip - Departs from Sandfly Point Wharf daily at 2.00pm.
- Boat Cruise on Milford Sound - 1 hour 40 minute trip Departs from Milford Sound Visitor Centre at 3.00pm
- Bus Milford Sound to Te Anau - 120km, 2 hour trip - Departs from Milford Sound Visitor Centre daily at 5.00pm