Roberts Point Walking Track, Franz Josef

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Roberts Point Track was the first track up the Franz Josef Glacier Valley.

It’s a bit of a hike at 11k round trip, about a 5 hour walk. The views are stunning at the end, you’ll look right over Franz Josef Glacier. DOC say this is hard walk, but I didn’t find it that hard. It’s a long continuous uphill hike with sections of large rocks to navigate around. The rocks can be quite slippery on a rainy day. If you use common sense you’ll have no problems. I did the Roberts Point Track walk for the second time at the age of 65. I found it very enjoyable with a great workout. I met lots of people on this walk. was worried watching hikers start out in the late afternoon and wondering how they would get back down in the dark. Please do this walk in the morning not afternoon, you don’t want to walk around big rocks in the dark.

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Quick Facts about this walk

  • Location: Franz Josef, South Island NZ
  • Distance: 11 kms
  • Time needed: 5 Hours Return
  • Difficulty: Medium to Hard
  • Wheelchair Access: No
  • Route: Double back
  • Elevation: 600m
  • Wet Feet: Yes
  • Toilets: No
  • Dogs: No
  • Mobile Coverage: No
  • Last Updated: Feb, 2020

We’ve partnered with Macpac outdoor walking & hiking gear to bring you the very best products designed exclusively for our New Zealand climate. They’ll ship for FREE within NZ on orders over $100 (if under $100 it’s only $5). Worldwide international shipping is available except to the USA. Bulky orders will be $20.

Summary points about this walk

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Points of interest along the walk​

Point 1: Start of Roberts Point Track

Drive over the Waiho River bridge turn left on to the Franz Josef Glaser road. At 3.3km pull into the carpark on your right. The Roberts Point Track is across the road. From there just follow the signs to Roberts Point Track, in 15 minutes you will be looking at the Waiho River Swing bridge. In another 50 mins you will be at a tricky climb down to the river bed, there is one small creek to cross or jump across before the tricky piece.

Point 2: The Waiho River Swing bridge

Within fifteen minutes you will walk past Peters pools turn off and be standing at the first of three swing bridges to cross for the day.

Point 3: Hendes Hut

40 mins and you should be at Hendes Hut. I was surprised to see this swing bridge, I don’t think it was here in 2010 the last time I did this walk. The walk up to Hendes Hut was interesting, a lot of rocks to step over.

Point 4: Rope Creek Swing Bridge

The minute you leave Hendes Hut you will be stunned when you see the Gallery, going down the Gallery steps is amazing. After the Gallery, it’s a short 15 minutes walk to Rope Creek Swing Bridge.

Point 5: Robert’s Point Lookout

45 minutes to Roberts Point from Rope Creek Swing Bridge. I could look down to the Waiho river and see the tourist walking up to the Franz Josef Glacier lookout. On my last walk here in 2010 there was only cold rock to sit on not a new wooden deck with comfortable seating and Franz Josef Glacier was right down below me. Today the glacier was around one thousand mitres away.

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What sort of walking and hiking gear will you need

We’ve partnered with Macpac outdoor walking & hiking gear to bring you the very best products designed exclusively for our New Zealand climate. They’ll ship for FREE within NZ on orders over $100 (if under $100 it’s only $5). Worldwide international shipping is available except to the USA. Bulky orders will be $20.

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