- Book the huts early on DOC website
- Bring Earplugs for a good nights sleep
We had booked to complete the Routeburn Track the very next day after just completing the Milford Track. It was a decision that meant there was very little time to recover, but we did get to resupply in Te Anau.
We were Dropped off The Divide Shelter to begin our walk. It was the toughest walk to date. Our bodies had not yet fully recovered from the previous hike, and our knees were in pain – we both had ankle support as well. The track itself had a lot of trees and shade, a lot of ups and downs which were hard on the knees.
Our first stop was a hut – we just had our snack and continued our way to Lake Howden Hut – which is where we booked. After a long and painful day – we reached what we though was the hut – unfortunately, that was the private hikers hut and we were quickly disappointed as it looked very nice!. Our actual hut was only 100metres away.
We were so relieved that we had arrived we spend the rest of the afternoon resting in the sun, on the benches and in the kitchen. We were so buggered that as soon as we finished our dinner we went straight to bed! – the sun was still shining and people were still flowing in and out of the hut.
Early rise we swiftly moved through the mountain as the day seemed easier. It appears our rest has certainly assisted in our recovery and our bodies were ready again!
The day was amazing, with open views of the valley with alpine mountain range in the backdrop – it was so vast and we could barely see the end of it. We munched on Whitakers Dark Mint Chocolate while making our way up to Harris Saddle. It was so deliciously naughty.
Harris Saddle provided a lovely resting point for us to nibble on our peanut sandwiches and cheddar cheese crackers. We sat in freezing winds that forced us to put on every layer that we had at hand.
The decline from Harris Saddle was truly amazing! We were in awe of how blue the lake shone in brilliance. We encountered our first ice/snow crossing. This down hill part of the track allowed for beautiful photo opportunities as the mountains in the distance hovered over our heads.
There were gorgeous waterfalls just outside the Routeburn Falls Hut, where Eddy took many videos and time lapses.
We woke up extra early so that we could catch the 10am bus. There was only one other guy in the kitchen and we could only see him with a headlight. The weather had turned from complete sunshine to complete downpour. It wasn’t all an upsetting experience because we got to use our North Face Dryzzle jackets!! So all in all, I can proudly say that we used everything that we brought on the trip. The walk from Routeburn Falls hut to the Routeburn Flats was rather easy, although we faced some steep declines, most of the journey was a smooth path down to the end.
There was a raging gorge that ran parallel to the path at one stage. This gorge was made more ravishing as the rain fuelled its rage.