This is the site of the original Turk – the first ever built. In 2020 it was upgraded to a fully insulated and double-glazed model that is fully consented (unlike the original which had none of these benefits). The site has excellent cellphone reception and amazing views overlooking the Wakatipu basin. The Turk is useful as both a day shelter and also for overnight stays. It isn’t part of the traverse, it’s an outlier that is well worth a visit on its own.
You will notice in the photos there have been two versions of this Turk, one with the windows to the left of the door and the new one with the windows on the other side.
The artwork in the Turk is by Linde Lanjouw.
Access (with reference to the map below)
The Mountain Turk Club is only responsible for the Turks and immediate vicinity. The Club is not responsible for the routes to access the Turks that are described below – there are no officially formed tracks or markers, so you must be able to navigate by map and/or GPS. Make sure you are realistic in your ambitions, have suitable equipment for alpine travel.
- Either walk up Tobins Track from Arrowtown or drive along the Glencoe Road until the abrupt right angle bend (don’t block the gates) where the Bracken Saddle track starts. Walk beside some paddocks, cross one to find a water race and continue through the picturesque little gorge to Bracken Saddle. From here continue along the 4wd track to Crown Peak where you might be able to see the Turk in the distance. Continue along the the 4wd track towards Mt Sale then drop down to the Turk. 3-4 hours
- This is the fastest route to the Turk but better to do in descent since people have got a bit confused when crossing the stream at 920 metres. To descend, head north from the Turk descending a little to cross the stream draining Mt Sale then descend gentle basins losing sight of the Turk around 1350 metres. Cross the stream and climb up the other side to join an old water race that leads back to route. 2-4 hours
- From the Crown Saddle car park climb over Mt Scott and continue to Crown Peak and route 1. This is a wonderfully scenic traverse and when there is enough snow in winter is probably New Zealand’s premier one day ski traverse when combined with route 2. 2-4 hours
- From Cardrona traverse the ridge to Mt Sale. This is quite up and down and can be skied in winter but being north facing the snow melts off quickly. 3-4 hours
- There is an old wagon trail through the first kilometre of Coal Creek. Then head up to the ridge going more to the north resulting in a bit less climbing. 2-4 hours