This is a big walk to the peak of Ben Ohau via the Greta Stream Track

The starting point of the hike is about 22 km from Twizel, on Glen Lyon Road on the northern shore of Lake Ōhau. Park in the Greta Track Trailhead car park.

Once you reach the car park, you’ll notice an abandoned musterer’s hut called Back Hut, which dates back to the 1890s.

The ascent begins immediately, with a 5 km climb up the western side of Ben Ōhau/Ruataniwha Peak. For the ultimate challenge, you’ll have to leave the trail behind and navigate your way to the peak, which stands at 1522 meters.

Once you have passed the forest, there is no shade from here on out.

The track continues to climb steeply as it zigzags up the mountainside. At almost 1000 meters of elevation gain, this walk is not for the faint of heart. But it most definitely makes the views from the top all the more rewarding.

When you have made it to 1370 meters, you will reach a saddle where a fence link crosses the track. This is technically the end of the walk, the peak as they say.

However, if you want to reach the summit, there is another 152 meters to climb for a maximum elevation of 1522 meters. This final stretch leaves the road behind and takes you through scree and tussock slopes. 

The summit of Ben Ohau is the perfect place to take in the views of the entire Mackenzie basin, as it offers uninterrupted views in every direction.

In winter and in westerly wind conditions walkers should be prepared for very cold temperatures—after all, ‘O hau’ means wind.

Ben Ōhau & Greta Stream Walk (1)

Quick Facts about this walk

  • Location: Twizel, South Island, New Zealand
  • Time needed: 6 to 7 hour walk
  • Distance: 16 km loop
  • Difficulty: Hard
  • Bikes allowed: Yes you can take your bike as the track is mostly road.
  • Route: Loop
  • Elevation: 933 m or deviate from the track to climb to the true summit at 1522 m.
  • Toilets: No
  • Dogs: Dogs on leash only
  • Mobile Coverage: Yes, very good

Summary points about this walk

Map track of the walk

See more of my walks in Twizel