Siberia Experience
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Your trip departs from Makarora, a scenic 45 min drive north of Wanaka around the shores of Lake Hawea & Wanaka. After checking in with Southern Alps Air (at our desk in the Wonderland Lodge – 5944 Haast Pass-Makarora Road) you will meet your pilot and have a trip briefing before take off.

1. Fly – 25 mins
(Extended Glacier Flight – 50 mins)

You will be flying with Buttercup – our famous yellow plane. She is perfectly suited for mountain flying and loves her job! Every passenger has a window seat to fully appreciate unobstructed views of the UNESCO World Heritage scenery of Aspiring National Park.

Your scenic flight will take you in over the Aspiring National Park into the remote Siberia Valley. Get close up views of towering mountain peaks on either side of you.
See glaciers, cascading waterfalls, hidden lakes, pristine mountain tarns and the icy caps of the Southern Alps. View the peaks of the misnamed Mt Dreadful & Mt Awful. Put simply – this is a breath taking scenic flight!

Your experienced pilot will provide personal commentary during your flight. One last turn and we are on approach to land on a grassy strip in the middle of the mountains in the remote and stunning Siberia Valley.

2. Walk – 2.5-3hrs

Step out of Buttercup onto the valley floor and feel the raw power of nature as you gaze skyward to the tops of the towering peaks that surround you.
Your pilot will accompany you to the stream crossing at the beginning of the track and explain about the walk and conditions on the day. Then they will wave goodbye and take off again, leaving you to enjoy the peaceful beauty that surrounds you.

Start by crossing the shallow Siberia Stream (you may wish to bring walking sandals) before walking south through native beech forest and starting to climb out of the Siberia Valley. This takes you up to the highest point of the Track. Bird song is all around you and you will feel a long way from the crowds, absorbed into a remote wilderness.

The next portion of the track zig zags down into the Wilkin Valley. From here you have the experience of walking along the grassy valley floor, following the river and surrounded by towering mountain peaks.
Finally, at the rendezvous point on the Wilkin River(clearly marked) you will pick up your Jet boat for the final portion of your trip.

Please note:

The walk from Siberia Valley to the Wilkin Valley is described as a Freedom Walk and it is unguided.
When taking part in this activity, you are responsible for your safety and wellbeing. Some parts have steep drop offs on the side so please be cautious at all times. Your pilot will have given you an oral briefing on the track and conditions and you have an opportunity to ask any last minute questions.

The Siberia Experience Track Sections

The track is 7km in length and takes 2.5-3hrs to complete.
• Section 1 is 3km to the highest point of the track
• Section 2 is a 2.5km downhill zig-zag track into the Wilkin Valley
• The last section (Section 3) is 1.5km along the river valley to the jet boat pick up point (which is clearly marked).

3. The Jet Boat Safari

Rendezvous at the Wilkin River for a thrilling & uniquely scenic 30 min jet boat journey. We will give you a pickup time from the jet boat company prior to departing from Makarora.

Speed down the icy braided rivers of the Wilkin and Makarora Rivers. The waters of both rivers are glacial blue and the scenery around you is spectacular. This is a very kiwi jet boat trip – far from the crowds.

Finally you will arrive back at Makarora – with memories and photos of an adventure that few will experience. This is a great way to discover the remote wilderness of New Zealand, all within a half day trip.


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