We had a few hours to spare in tiny tiny Te Anau before needing to catch our bus, and so decided to spend some time on another of New Zealand’s Great Walks – the Kepler Track. Rumour has it that this Track is pretty spectacular in its full form; involving a climb up Mount Luxmore, a walk along the Kepler mountain ridge, and a descent into the Iris Burn Valley.
Today, we caught the water taxi from town across Lake Te Anau to get to Brod Bay. We originally planned to walk around to Dock Bay and then back to town via the Control Gates and the Te Anau Wildlife Centre, but the water taxi driver advised us that two fit young ladies (such as ourselves) would finish that route in no time. He suggested that we also spend some time climbing as much of Mount Luxmore that time would permit. So we wouldn’t feel too bad about missing out on spending some quality time at the Wildlife Centre (F wanted to practise wildlife photography), he also taught us a trick for attracting birds in the wild – rubbing some spit on a watch face with a piece of styrofoam. Unfortunately, we didn’t quite make it up past the bush line on Mount Luxmore to see the views of Te Anau, but we found that the bird calling trick worked to an extent as we could hear the birds come closer and closer to us when we tried it out. I think a little more patience and time would have helped bring them right to our feet… Perhaps next time! Overall, the walk was quite pleasant. It was a taster of a very different part of the Fiordland National Park to the Milford Track, and I’d imagine the wow factor begins to really kick in once you pass the bush line. There are many great spots around the bay for camping, fishing, and boating activities – and so close to Te Anau, too! I’m hoping to come back and spend some more time on this Track one day. Sounds like it’ll be pretty worthwhile to finish off.