The booking system for this period (huts/campsites booking system) is different to the booking system for the period when the track is fully open (Great Walks booking system). Liz Carlson, of the popular travel blog Young Adventuress, recently walked the Milford Track and has some exclusive, what you should know before you go, insights to share with us…. View current conditions on the MacKinnon Pass webcam. From 27 October 2020 to 29 November 2020, the section between Dumpling Hut and Sandfly Point is closed due to signficant storm damage. From May to late October, it can be cold and wet, with ice, snow and short daylight hours - only go if you have alpine, river crossing and navigation skills. You’ll also see the impressive Mackay Falls and the fascinating Bell Rock – an enormous boulder that has been hollowed out over time by the powerful waterfalls and then turned upside down. The Milford Track is known worldwide as one of the most iconic and majestic walks in the world, and walking it is a once in a lifetime opportunity for most people. The Ice Fields above feed numerous waterfalls on rock faces all around the valley. Apparently a hose was used to displace the fuel from the tanks of one of the tour vessels, and various government officials claimed it appeared to be an act of ecoterrorism motivated by rising numbers of tourists to the park, though more details did not become known. As a fiord, Milford Sound was formed by a process of glaciation over millions of years. We recommend you plan your trip early so you can nab those ideal dates. See the DOC Milford Track Brochure for further details on the terrain covered each day. Suggested Itinerary These must be booked well in advance; they can be booked in any order. The Great Walk Season runs from late October until late April every summer. Time: 6–7 hrDistance: 14 kmClimb to Mackinnon Pass and the memorial to explorer Quintin McKinnon, with exceptional views of Lake Mintaro and the Clinton Canyon along the way. Work on the Homer Tunnel began in 1935 but difficult conditions and interruption by the Second World War delayed its completion until 1954. The Milford Track can only be walked in one direction over 3 nights and 4 days, with one night in each hut (to maintain a limit imposed by the 'Fiordland National Park management plan' of 40 overnight walkers entering the track on any one day). The drive to Milford Sound itself passes through unspoiled mountain landscapes before entering the 1.2 km (0.75 mi) Homer Tunnel which emerges into rain-forest-carpeted canyons that descend to the sound. Under the water the mountains continue to depths of up to 265 m. Te Anau - Milford Highway map and factsheet (PDF, 3,281K). Huts have bunks, mattresses, heating, toilets, basic cooking facilities, solar-powered lighting and cold running water. Milford Sound / Piopiotahi is a fiord in the south west of New Zealand's South Island within Fiordland National Park, Piopiotahi (Milford Sound) Marine Reserve, and the Te Wahipounamu World Heritage site. In the same year, the low watershed saddle between the Hollyford River and the Cleddau River was discovered, where the Homer Tunnel was to be developed about sixty years later to provide road access.. The road from Te Anau to Milford Sound is where all of the beauty begins. for whom New Zealand is their primary place of established residence. Milford Road from Te Anau to Milford Sound is one of New Zealand's most scenic drives. The nearest town with facilities is Te Anau, and there are limited facilities at Milford Sound/Piopiotahi. Due to a natural phenomenon called 'deep water emergence,' deep-water animals such as black coral can be viewed in the shallow waters surrounding the observatory. Bookings are essential, as only 90 people can start the walk each day and places frequently book out. Ce fjord de Nouvelle-Zélande est le plus connu et surement le plus impressionnant. Always stick to the track and look out for your fellow hikers. Milford comes to life when it rains and water tumbles off surrounding cliffs creating hundreds of spontaneous waterfalls. Part of this amazing journey is getting to the start. Biodiversity inventory and monitoring toolbox, Intermediate: Great Walk/Easier tramping track, 27 Oct 20 to 29 Nov 20 (Great Walks season), 30 Nov 20 to 30 Apr 21 (Great Walks season), create an account on the huts/campsites system, Check the Fiordland National Park weather forecast, View current conditions on the MacKinnon Pass webcam, Know before you go on the Mintaro Hut page, New Zealand Avalanche Advisory for Fiordland, Avalanche Terrain Exposure Scale (ATES) for Fiordland, Clinton Valley avalanche paths (JPG, 1,742K), Arthur Valley avalanche paths (JPG, 1,703K), Te Rua-o-te-moko / Fiordland National Park Visitor Centre, Milford Track walking guide – collect with your tickets at the Fiordland National Park Visitor Centre, Track is well marked and signposted, but some sections are steep and rough, Cold temperatures, snow, strong winds and heavy rain can occur anytime, DOC manages avalanche risk to a low level and walkers may be flown (at their cost) over dangerous sections. Piopiotahi (Milford Sound) Marine Reserve, TripAdvisor 2008 Travelers' Choice Destinations Award, "Milford Sound, South Island, New Zealand", "New Zealand National Climate Summary–The year 2004", "The Humpback Whale Migration – Fiordland Marine Guardians", "Southern right whale sightings on the rise", "Stirling Falls, Southland – NZ Topo Map", Fiords – Underwater rock walls and basins, "Police probe Milford diesel spill 'terrorism, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Milford_Sound_/_Piopiotahi&oldid=976472758, Tourist attractions in Southland, New Zealand, Articles using infobox body of water without alt, Articles using infobox body of water without image bathymetry, All Wikipedia articles written in New Zealand English, Articles with unsourced statements from May 2016, Articles with unsourced statements from November 2012, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 3 September 2020, at 03:41.  Penguins are also common within the sound, which is a breeding site for the Fiordland penguin and has subsequently been identified as an Important Bird Area by BirdLife International. Mountain climbing peaks - the Darran Mountains, accessed via the Gertrude Saddle and the Hollyford Valley, are well known for their exciting mountain climbing opportunities. All would reduce the current round-trip duration (which has to travel via Te Anau), thus allowing tourism to be spread out over more of the day. The impressive falls drop 580 m in 3 leaps from Lake Quill. Transport arrangements can be affected by bad weather. A 10% discount is available to members, staff and instructors of the following organisations, who also hold a valid 12 month Backcountry Hut Pass: NZ Mountain Safety Council; NZ Federated Mountain Clubs; NZ Deer Stalkers Association; NZ Land Search and Rescue (LandSAR); Scouts New Zealand; GirlGuiding NZ. Food should be lightweight, tasty, nutritious and provide you with much-needed fuel! From Milford Sound, it is a 2-hour drive (93km) to Te Anau Downs, 2 ½ hours (120km) to Te Anau and 5 hours to Queenstown (297 km). In the Great Walks season (27 October 2020 – 30 April 2021): Best time to walk the track - there are more facilities and fewer hazards. Camping is not permitted on the Milford Track. Climb to Mackinnon Pass and the memorial to explorer Quintin McKinnon, with exceptional views of Lake Mintaro and the Clinton Canyon along the way. Milford Sound was initially overlooked by European explorers, because its narrow entry did not appear to lead into such large interior bays.