Parsons Creek to Freehold Creek...

Parsons Creek to Freehold Creek bushline track

Ruataniwha Conservation Park, Mackenzie Basin


Time: 2 hr one way

Access is via the Parsons Creek entrance on Lake Ohau Road (approximately 54 km from Twizel). The walk starts with a moderate climb through the Parsons Creek beech forest margin before heading out into open grass and shrublands. The track crosses Sawyers Creek and meanders along ancient moraines before entering Freehold Creek Bush. There are bridges over the creeks en route. This is one of the best short walks in the basin to see mistletoe/pirirangi, which is normally in flower during late November/December. The track ends at the bush line with mountain views and a wide variety of alpine plants.

Note: A marked route continues on to Lake Dumbell – care is needed as this is an alpine route.

Getting there

The Mackenzie Basin is situated in the centre of New Zealand's South Island. It features mountains, lakes, rivers, beech forest remnants and rolling tussock country.

All of the walking tracks described here are easy to access from main roads, and offer fantastic views of the Mackenzie high country.

Some of these walks include easements through private farmland. Please respect the landowners’ rights by keeping to the marked easements. These are well-signposted and marked by orange poles. Please ensure all public access gates for walkers are closed.


Feature Value Info


South IslandMount Cook - MacKenzieTwizel


  • Walking
  • Free


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