- Waianakarua Scenic Reserve
- Staircase Hut (free, six bunks)
- From Mount Misery Rd, off Herbert Hampden Rd. This hut is privately owned by the New Zealand Deer Stalkers Association. Users should contact the Palmerston Branch.
- Notes & Map
- Staircase Hut (pdf, )
- GPX File
- Staircase Hut (gpx, yo )
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This little-known hunter’s hut in Waianakarua Scenic Reserve is a good getaway for those wanting a wilderness trip but not prepared to drive for hours out of Dunedin to get it.
From the forestry road car park, follow a well-defined track through tall kanuka forest.
Only twenty minutes from the road, you will reach a steep-sided gorge through which the Waianakarua River Middle Branch runs.
Head upstream for about 500m until reaching an old totara with a marker attached.
Take the spur above the river to Pt473 and on to Pt499.
At this point the trail emerges from manuka and kanuka scrub onto tussocky slopes.
Continue along the tops and descend ‘Staircase Spur’ to the hut.