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Jollie Brook Circuit, Lake Sumner Forest Park

Fording Jollie Brook Stream
Lake Sumner Forest Park
Gabriel Hut, four bunks; Jollie Brook Hut, seven bunks; Cold Stream Hut, six bunks
Sisters Stream car park, Lake Sumner Road
BV23, BU23
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This is a perfect track for novice trampers, or those who haven’t been tramping in a while and who want an easy and enjoyable multiday walk.

Starting at the Sisters car park, a leisurely stroll leads through the wide open Hurunui Valley, up and over river terraces to the cosy four-bunk Gabriel Hut.

Lake Sumner is a further 30-minutes from the hut. Good camping is available here if the hut does not appeal.

To continue the circuit, head back to Gabriel Hut and to the track junction heading to Jollie Brook. A nice amble through the trees next to the tinkling sound of Gabriel Stream eventually leads to Gabriel Saddle.

The track threads its way along Jollie Brook Stream flowing low and steady at first, but eventually gathering momentum and depth requiring a crossing on a swingbridge to reach Jollie Brook Hut, established in 1972.

The forest track opens up along grassy flats next to Jollie Brook Stream. There are numerous crossings required, zigzagging across the river.

Before long, the junction to Cold Stream Hut is reached. Either head to the hut or camp under some shady trees next to Jollie Brook.

Zigzag down the Jollie Brook once more. The valley gradually narrows into a gorge, but it’s an easy jaunt through it before reaching the wide open spaces of the river flats. Cross the Jollie Brook several more times before reaching the Hurunui River.

Bush bash your way along an overgrown track alongside the Hurunui until the familiar site of the swingbridge leading to the Sisters car park – a full circuit completed.

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