A challenging but rewarding 16 km hike the Isthmus Peak Track is located near Lake Wanaka, New Zealand. Starting from Stewart Creek carpark, off the SH6, the trail head is north of the Lake Hāwea township and just a 30-minute drive from Wanaka.
The track is suitable for fit hikers or experienced mountain bikers, offering far-reaching views from start to finish as it heads uphill for the first 2 – 4 hours. Don’t let the false peaks fool you, you know you’re there when you see the pole on the top of Isthmus Peak at 1385 m.
A fairly exposed trail for the most part, hikers should be equipped with sun protection as well as layers for changeable inclement weather, even in summer.
From the car park the path takes you up onto a skyline ridge that runs in between Lake Wanaka and Lake Hawea. (Some of these sections will need to be walked if on a mountain bike.)
Upon the ridgeline follow the signs for the Isthmus Peak track on the right, whilst to the left you can visit the conservation area ad a series of unnamed peaks by taking the Glen Dene Ridge track.
Enjoy vistas of both Lake Wanaka and Lake Hawea and the beautifully rugged Southern Alps or ‘Kā Tiritiri o te Moana’.
Based on our data, the trail is graded as difficult. For information on how we grade trails, please click here
. Also, check our latest community posts for trail updates.
This trail can be completed in approx 5 – 7 hours. Caution is advised on trail times as this depends on multiple variables. For more info, click here