Lake Daniells

Lewis Pass National Reserve

  • 4 hr – 6 hr return via same track
  • Easy

Lake Daniells is a tranquil, shallow lake west of Lewis Pass. The walk in is along easy, well-maintained tracks through beech forest.

The Sluice Box • By matthew. Licence: C.
Lake Daniells: Key information
Walking time
1 – 2 days
4 hr – 6 hr
Return via same track
Return via same track
No bookings — open access
No — open access
Lake Daniells: Find it
Marble Hill Camping Area, 5km east of Springs Junction, SH7
450m – 570m
Altitude change 120m

The track is in very good condition, following the courses of the Alfred River and Frazer Stream along a gentle incline all the way to the lake. The scenery and the ease of walking make it very popular, and there is the possibility of being overrun by large numbers of young children. So, while the hut is large, if you believe tramping is about getting away from other people, you may want to continue on to the Thompson's Flat Hut. It is an extra hour's walk each way and the track is muddy, but it is highly worthwhile.

Alpine Tarn • By bernieq. Licence: cc by-nc-sa.


The track begins at at a camping area 4km east of Springs Junction on State Highway 7. Public transport is regular over this route. Turn off the highway onto a short road and drive several hundred metres to its terminus near the Maruia River.

Marble Hill Camping Area - Manson-Nicholls Memorial Hut: 2 hr, easy

From the shelter, the track enters the trees and soon crosses the Maruia River over a deep, narrow gorge called the Sluice Box. From here on, the track runs through beech forest at a distance alongside the Alfred River. Eventually the river bends away to a valley on the right and the track continues along Frazer Stream.

Marble Hill Camping Area • (DOC).

The track passes just a few metres from the end of the lake, but you may never notice if you miss the glints of light penetrating the lake-side foliage. The hut is situated farther along, where a tiny jetty juts out into the shallow waters. Camping is possible on the grass surrounding the hut or a little further along the lake in the open forest.

If you are continuing on and forfeiting the crowded comforts of the Manson-Nicholls Hut for the peaceful, squalid delight of Thompson's Flat Hut you have another hour's walk.

Manson Nicholls Memorial Hut • Serviced Hut (DOC). Capacity: 20.

Manson-Nicholls Memorial Hut-Thompson's Flat Hut: 1 hr, easy

The track continues easily around the lake, then crosses a very low and very muddy saddle into the open space of Thompson's Flat. Avoid cutting across the marshy flat directly to the hut, but keep to the solid perimeter. A river runs by outside the hut and there are Chiloglottis cornuta and Corybas orchids on the beech hillside nearby.

ID 221

About this track

Added 1 June 2001 by matthewmatthew. 4 revisions, most recently 18 January 2009 by ledgeledge.
284 views in the past year (24 per month).