Peak Hill lies between the Rakaia river gorge and Lake Coleridge. Access if off Algidus road and is sign posted by DOC.
The DOC track is relatively new and, as such, is more of a route. It requires an average fitness as a lot of height is gained in a short period.
Up until early 2005 Peak Hill was private land and two small paddocks still need to be crossed before you reach the actual beginning. A sign indicates the true start and from here on it’s straight up.
Alpine tussock and spaniards, small slips and stones are all negotiated during the climb. Short stops to catch your breath are rewarded with spectacular views of Mt Hutt, the Rakaia River and Lake Coleridge. These views gain momentum with every step taken and the 400m gained in a short time pales before them. When the top of the shorter section of the hill is reached the gradient lessens and the wind increases. The top is very exposed and leads on to another section of steep climbing along the ridge and finishes at the summit of Peak Hill. This, again, is exceeded by the views that now include the Rakaia gorge.
The return trip is back down the same route and care needs to be taken to ensure that it is done standing and not sitting.
Further information can be found in Pat Barrett's book 'Canterbury Foothills and Forests - A walking and tramping guide'.