Rees – Dart Track
See spectacular mountain scenery, forest and alpine vegetation, glacier-fed rivers and the Dart Glacier on this 4-5 day hike covering 70kms.
Huts: first come first served
Muddy Creek to park boundary
12km, 4 – 5 hours
Take the vehicle track from Muddy Creek and follow the marker poles across the boggy section beyond Arthurs Creek. A side trip to the Kea Basin begins on the other side of the Rees River north of the picturesque Lennox Falls. Continue up the grassy flats to the swing bridge on the national park boundary. This track crosses private land. Please respect the landowner’s property and leave all gates as you find them.
Park boundary to Shelter Rock Hut
7km, 2 – 3 hours
Warning: Avalanche paths between the upper bushline and Shelter Rock Hut can make travel hazardous from late autumn to early summer.
There is a marked track through the bush and a swing bridge crossing to the west bank of Rees River. The track continues through beech forest past Clarke Slip to the bush edge. Above the bush, the track crosses several gullies that are avalanche paths. Take care crossing these gullies in spring and early summer when late snow may still pose a risk. Half an hour up from the bush edge, cross a bridge to the river’s east bank to reach the 22-bunk Shelter Rock Hut.
Shelter Rock Hut to Dart Hut
10kms, 4 – 6 hr
Warning: The upper Snowy Creek bridge is removed each winter and is returned when the snow clears, which can be as late as December. This creek can be hazardous so extreme care must be taken if crossing it. Avalanche paths between the bushline and Dart Hut can make travel hazardous from late autumn to early summer.
The track between Shelter Rock Hut and Dart Hut is narrow with a number of steep drop-offs, particularly in the upper Snowy Creek. Follow the true left of Rees River as the track goes through scrub then rises about 100 m above the river. The track sidles into the tussock-filled upper basin and follows the river’s bed. On the final steep climb to the 1471 m Rees Saddle, there is a lightly marked track close to the bluff on the left. From the saddle, follow the orange markers as the track drops and passes tarns to a tussock bench well above Snowy Creek. From here, the track traverses steep slopes that can be dangerous when wet or snow covered. A bridge crosses upper Snowy Creek, (see above) and the track sidles across broken slopes before descending sharply. The 32-bunk Dart Hut is on Snowy Creek’s true left and can be reached via a swing bridge.
Dart Hut to Daleys Flat
18kms, 5 – 7 hours
From Dart Hut, it is an easy 2- to 3-hour sidle and descent through beech forest to Cattle Flat. A faint track marked by metal poles leads across the 4 kilometres of Cattle Flat, crossing terraces and gullies and is followed by a well marked track through beech forest to 20-bunk Daleys Flat Hut.
Daleys Flat to Chinamans carpark
16kms, 5.5 – 7.5 hours
From Daley’s Flat Hut, walk through beech forest for the first hour. After passing the recently formed lake over Dredge Flat, follow the new track leading up through native forest high above the Dart River. This part of the track has been realigned after landslides had forced a long term closure. These new sections are narrow and sometimes steep and require a higher level of backcountry skills than before. After descending to Suveryors Flat the track stays close to the river, then climbs over Chinamans Bluff and eases out to Chinamans Flat and the carpark.
Chinamans road end to Paradise
6kms, 2 hours
A fine-weather road leads to Paradise, crossing Chinamans Flat, forests and Dans Paddock before entering forests again and descending to farmland at Mill Flat. During heavy rain, the road floods, preventing vehicle access beyond Paradise. Trampers may need to walk to Paradise to meet transport.