Tramp: Mount Robert Circuit daywalk, Nelson Lakes

As responsible caring parents, Claire and I respect that Grandparents require us to go elsewhere if they are to maximise their grandchild cuddles. Indeed this is the only reason Claire and I yeeted* the boy at Claire’s folks and took off for a half day walk at St Arnaud; the Mt Robert Circuit.

Mt Robert Circuit, Nelson Lakes 28.12.2023

I don’t often take the time to share half daywalks, but my tramping experiences are slim of late and it’s a great wee loop that has a bit of everything. Particularly on a nice day. It’s like a mini Holdsworth-Jumbo loop, except you park at 850m.

There’s a carpark at the end of Paddy’s track that’s recommended as the ‘carpark for the circuit’. This keeps the top park free for Sabiners etc and puts your short road-walk at the start of the walk instead of the end, so well worth it.

We stroll up the road and mosey up the zip-zag to stunning views.

A lovely view of Claire, and a decent one of Lake Rotoiti, St Arnaud township beyond

Up top, the wind is cool. Always bring at least windbreakers and a puffer if heading beyond the bushline (and always anyway, but particularly…)

This is a well-trodden, heavily sign-posted route; so many inexperienced folks have misjudged this alpine area due to it’s handily high carparks that the authorities have tried to do what they can. So not a lot of tips required here in the blog.

Some fella runs away from us while we have a bite at Relax Shelter.

We force a passing couple to get one of us.

We stick our heads into Bushline Hut. It’s a booked hut, and fully booked. Inside are two fellas and two ~10yr olds. Outside, two babies arrive in backpacks. On the way down, three more kids head up with their mum. There are a few flatish areas to pitch a tent in the stunted beech nearby to escape that family evening pleasure should it be required; but you’re so close to the road-end it seems a destination hut for young families really (in summer at least!)

We hear a bellbird and there’s a bit of old pig rooting sign on the way down.


Too fast for our own good, we graciously provide the grandparents even more precious time by going to the pub.

A great little circuit to whet your appetite and/or remind you about walks on the tops.

* language for comedic effect only, we love our little man and he was placed down gently and got a big cuddle when we got back.

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