We did the first bit up to Luxmore hut because it was the middle of winter so unfortunately the avalanche risk prevented any further safe passage at that time of year.
Our day started with meeting the Water Taxi across the lake Te Anau. Unfortunately the boat driver didn’t recognise us at the marina, so we had to go to catch him at the boat ramp in the town. Nevertheless it was nice to save an hour or more of walking around the lake and start closer to our endpoint.
The view of lake Te Anau from the track was obscured by a sea of fog that didn’t lift completely until the next day.
Once we started from the drop off point it was almost immediately uphill all the way to the hut. Difficulty was low as the track is very well established, wide and well maintained. As you near the top of the bush line there are some fairly steep sections and a bluff of large rocks but of course there were stairs.
Reaching the top of the bush line we were immediately greeted with recently fallen snow but since the weather was clear this was delightful. It was only a couple more kilometers before we spied the Luxmore Hut in time for lunch.
After a hearty lunch and a cup of tea we went up the hill to the start of the avalanche danger zone and made a snowman. The snow in parts was a couple of feet deep and was hard going with boots and no snow shoes.
A decent sunset and beautiful dawn gives these scenes some interesting hues.