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Ross Creek Reservoir Track

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If you’re looking to immerse yourself in nature without necessarily putting your body through an extensive workout, the Ross Creek Reservoir Track is for you. Located a short 15-minute drive from Dunedin’s city center, the track runs the length of the man-made lake of the reservoir. The track has two trailheads. However, as it is a loop track, you can’t miss anything along the way, no matter where you choose to start. You will be able to see the 2 dams that hold the reservoir together, as well as the Valve Tower that sits on the lake. The Valve Tower is not accessible to the public, but it remains a picturesque site with the water and forest in the background.

Though the reservoir is not technically a reserve, it is treated as such. Thus, the native bush of the area has been allowed to take over the region, without much interference from human affairs. For this same reason, you’ll find that parts of the tracks do not allow you to roam freely into the forest, i.e. there are fences in the way. This keeps the bush safe while also making the track family-friendly. 

This track is easy and accessible for all ages.

Quick Facts

        • Location: Dunedin, South Island, New Zealand
        • Time needed: 45-minute walk
        • Distance: 3.9 km
        • Difficulty: Easy
        • Bikes allowed: No
        • Route: Loop
        • Elevation: 116m
        • Wet Feet: Yes, when there has been enough rain, crossing the creek can result in wet feet.
        • Toilets: No
        • Dogs: Yes, on a leash
        • Mobile Coverage: Unknown
        • Last Updated: April, 2020
  • Track Highlights

    The track allows you to immerse yourself in nature while being just a short drive away from the city. You get a little bit of everything as you walk through the trees and lounge along the riverbank. The scenery is breathtaking and the air is clear. It is easy to get lost in the sound of birds and rushing water.

  • Track Quality

    The track is maintained by the Dunedin City Council to ensure the safety and upkeep of the reservoir.

  • Hazards


  • Transport

    You can start the walk from either the Ross Creek Reservoir Forest Walk on Burma Road or Ross Creek Access on Rockside Road. Both trailheads are about a 20 minute walk from the nearest bus station. The first trailhead can be reached by bus route 50 and the second by bus route 3.

  • Water


  • Driving Instructions

    From Central Dunedin to  Ross Creek Reservoir Forest walk trailhead: Make your way out of town towards Stuart Street/Taheri Road. Continue straight for 1.7km until you get to Wakari Road. Then, turn right and continue straight. After 2.2km, turn right onto Burma Road. After 170m, you will see a small car park on your left with the sign “Ross Creek Reservoir.”

    From Central Dunedin to Ross Creek Access Rockside Road: Head North on SH1 towards Queens Gardens. After 2.7km, turn left onto Duke Street/Malvern Street. Continue Straight for 1.2km then turn left onto Rockside Road. After 800m, you will see the trailhead on your left, next to the entrance to a driveway. There does not seem to be a car park nearby.

  • Shops or Restaurants nearby


  • Area & Track History

    Ross Creek Reservoir is one of the oldest artificial lakes in New Zealand. The water supply reservoir was opened in 1867 and is still in use today. The reservoir is named after the Ross Creek from which it receives its water.

    Sections of the track have been closed off for reparations throughout the years.

  • Camping

    No camping on the track

Map of Ross Creek Reservoir Track Route

Our original photos of Ross Creek Reservoir Track

These photos were taken with Garry’s GoPro Hero 4. I lighten them up a bit before uploading. Please don’t copy them they are our copyright, thanks.


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Contact info

Ross Creek Reservoir, Otago 9010, New Zealand

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