Incredible Ridgeline Track with Stunning Views

The Kepler Track is incredibly scenic, specifically the section between Luxmore Hut and Iris Burn. The trail is right along the ridgeline and is unexplainably aesthetic. I could not recommend this track enough! We started our trip at the Kepler Track Car Park late in the evening, and headed in to Brod Bay Campsite for the night. We arrived just as the sun was setting after about an hour of easy walking. The next morning was the start of our long day. We went from Brod Bay all the way to Iris Burn in a single day, stopping by the Luxmore Hut for a lunch break, and tagging the summit of Mount Luxmore, which is well worth the short detour from the track. The section between Forest Burn Shelter and just beyond Hanging Valley Shelter is my favorite part of the track. You hike along a stunning ridgeline most of the time. Just make sure to account for the added time due to your jaw dragging on the ground behind you! Not too long after the Hanging Valley Shelter, the track drops back into the fern and moss covered forests with endless switchbacks. After the long day, this was definitely the most mind-numbing part of the hike. We just wanted to get to camp and get some rest! Our last day we hiked from the Iris Burn Campsite to the Rainbow Reach Carpark. We opted to walk about 10 minutes out to the main road and hitched a ride back to the Kepler Track Car Park rather than do the last section of track, primarily because of a tight itinerary. Overall, an amazing track, and well worth the status of one of New Zealand's "Great Walks."

Beautiful scenery that makes for a great overnight trip. Could be done as a day hike as well, but waking up to the sunrise coming up over Rogers Lake is well worth bringing the gear to camp. Could also potentially make for a great way to tick off James Peak. Camp near Rogers Lake, wake up early, head up to the summit of James Peak, then come back down, and either stick around for another night, or scoop up your stuff and head out.

Great hike with lots of beautiful places to camp near both Lower and Upper Chicago Lakes. Upper Chicago Lake is above treeline, and can get very windy. There is tree cover just below Upper Chicago Lake with good views over Lower Chicago Lake. Great as a day hike, or relaxed overnight trip.