Grave Talbot Track is a hard return walk of 7.2 km, it’ll take you around 4 hours allowing for time to take photos of the stunning views at the top.

The Grave Talbot Track is unknown by most and rarely used. You will likely not run into anyone else while on this walk. However, it is recommended not to tramp this track alone not because of its unpopularity, but also because of the hazards (see below). 

Even for experienced trampers, this walk is a challenge—but the views at the top make it an all the more worth it. 

The beginning of this walk is a simple stroll along the Gulliver River. To keep it easy, some will only do this section of the walk. Furthermore, it is usually the only part of the track that can be done all year round. The upper part is only recommended during summer and autumn (due to avalanche risks). 

Walk with the large rimu and beech trees that line the river and provide a canopy above you. Slowly the track will turn into alpine scrublands as you keep climbing. 

This walk then follows the Esperance River and leads to the Esperance River Grasslands at the base of the rock walls below Mt McPherson. On a clear day, the top of this walk offers unparalleled views of some of the tallest mountains in Fiordland National Park.

Must do while in Milford Sound

The Grave Talbot Track is located right off the main road to Milford Sound. While in Milford Sound, take a 2 hour boat trip it really is spectacular and well worth it. If you’d rather someone else drive while you soak up the scenery (it’s a long drive of 118km from Te Anau) then take a bus tour which includes the cruise and a walk, which leaves from Te Anau.

Quick Facts about this walk

  • Location: Milford Sound, South Island, New Zealand
  • Time needed: 3-4 hour walk
  • Distance: 7.2 km
  • Difficulty: Hard
  • Hazards: Risk of an avalanche during spring and winter. 
  • Bikes allowed: No
  • Route: Return
  • Elevation: 600 m
  • Wet Feet: The track can get extremely muddy.
  • Toilets: No
  • Dogs: No
  • Mobile Coverage: Unknown
  • Last Updated: May 2020

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