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Fern Burn Hut, Motatapu Station

Fern Burn Hut has 12 bunks and a crew of feral possums. Photo: Hazel Phillips
Motatapu Station
2.5-3hr to the hut
Fern Burn car park on Motatapu Road, Glendhu Bay
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Fern Burn Hut.Motatapu Station (gpx, yo 21 KB)
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An overnight trip from Wanaka to the 12-bunk Fern Burn Hut offers a slice of this Otago high country station.

The walk in is easy going as the gradient isn’t tough, although at times the track is cut into the mountainside high above Fern Burn. The surrounding terrain is mostly riparian shrubland and grassy flats.

Halfway up the track, you hit the 4144ha Stack Conservation Area, by way of an extremely pretty stream winding its way through the forest – a combination of mountain, silver and red beech. Fern Burn is the ideal spot to stop for lunch.

Soon you’ll hit tussock country, with views up and down the sharp valley, and before long there’s just one tiny stream crossing before a final grunt up to the hut.

Note: Fern Burn Hut has no heating, due to the almost complete absence of firewood nearby, and there may be a family of possums to keep you company.