Added by Katie Pellicore
Distance: 14.3 km (8.9 miles) roundtripElevation gain: 1400 m (4,600 ft)Duration: 6-8 hoursUnbeatable panoramic views of the Alps and Lake WakatipuChallenging winter route
In the summer, Ben Lomond is an easy rated track flooded with tourists. In the winter, the hike gets a complete makeover by the soft blankets of snow, especially closer to the peak. Although the snow makes the route significantly more challenging, the views afforded are phenomenal and the trail itself is quite an adventure.
Starting from the Gondola car park in Queenstown, the trail ascends quickly up through the forest. After you reach the top of the Gondola, the trailhead levels off and becomes more moderate until you reach the saddle. As you approach the saddle, there is a stunning view of the Alps ahead and Lake Wakatipu behind you. There is also a nice bench for soaking in the views.
Beyond the saddle, the trail is no longer marked in the winter - approaching the summit requires a fair amount of scrambling through rocks and snow. Ice axes or crampons could be used here if you're more uncomfortable with scrambling. The approach to the summit is very steep and the snow is quite deep. Even if you cannot reach the exact peak of the track, the panoramas are unbeatable. The slope is at a perfect angle for sliding down, if you are so inclined, to speed up the pace.
- Warm layers
- Food + water
- Hiking shoes
- Hat + sunglasses
- Ice axe/crampons (optional)
Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.
Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More
ReviewsLeave a Review
Have you done this adventure? Have something to add? You could be the first to leave a review!
More Adventures Nearby
Backpack to the Waimak Falls Hut
New Zealand / Arthur's Pass Village
Begin this two night (one night option) tramping trip from the Bealey Bridge over the Waimakariri River – approximately 8 kilometers south of Arthur’s Pass.
Hike the Ridge Walking Track
New Zealand / Ridge Trailhead
The trail for this hike starts next to the bathrooms that are about 150m down the road (south) from the Whakapapa Visitor Center.