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The Great Rides and Cycle Trails of New Zealand

Lake Hayes Track

Regional Ride

Queenstown, South Island

This lovely single track around the Lake has been an eternal favourite of locals and visitors for ever. 

The track is probably best in early morning or later in the afternoon because of it's popularity with walkers - particularly in the weekends.  There are a few narrow sections where there is a significant drop off at the edge of the pathway down to the lake but it is not technical and can be handled by any ability of rider or age.

A short section on a narrow board walk through the swamp end of the lake can be challenging for absolute beginners.  There are a couple of very short steepish climbs on the north-east side of the lake and a slightly longer but less steep climb on the south-west side.  It is recommended that the easiest way to ride the track is clockwise. 

Despite it's brown colour (due increased algae bloom in recent years) Lake Hayes is perfectly safe for swimming and is a very popular swimming spot with locals during the summer months when it is significantly warmer than the other lakes in the region.  On calm days the Lake generates wonderful reflections of the Remarkable Ranges and in autumn when the leaves are changing colour their is an extremely romantic feeling. 

Lake Hayes is a short 6 kilometer ride to Arrowtown either along the roads or over the steep zig-zag hill into Millbrook Resort (see the Arrowtown to Queenstown route explained).


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