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Musters Mountain Pack Trail, New Zealand

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Category: New Zealand South Island


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The Musters Mountain Pack Trail is for any globetrotter that wants to get off-the-beaten track and ride through some seriously spectacular High Country in NZ’s South Island.

Your guide, John Wall, has put together the ultimate 6 night, 5 day itinerary that begins in the charming, gold mining town of Saint Bathans. With a introduction ride through the historic township and past the Vulcan Hotel (yep – it’s haunted) and around the iconic Blue Lake, you’ll be ready to head for the hills the following day.

And that’s exactly what you do, with a team of pack horses, you’ll be summiting mountains that reach 6,000 feet above sea level (that’s crazy high) and gain a true appreciation for the farmers that farm this harsh, distant region. That’s the special part of this ride, the High Country Stations that you’ll be riding through aren’t open to the public. Nor is this remote, dramatic moon-scape accessible unless you’re on a seriously sure-footed horse.

Of a night time you’ll stay in rustic, musterer’s huts, steeped in history and charm, that have housed generations of musterer’s. This pack horse trip epitomises the New Zealand High Country culture. Traditionally pack horse trips can be slow going, but we’ve specifically worked with your guide John Wall to include days within the itinerary where you can have a good trot and canter when the terrain allows. Need I say more!


time in saddle: on average between 6 to 7 hours a day

breed of horses: Station-bred stock horses that have all been home-bred and educated by John Wall and his son Hamish.

pace: walking, with limited opportunities to trot or canter

riding ability: suitable for intermediate to experienced riders

weight limit: 110 kgs * please contact us if you’re above this weight.

accommodation: Boutique, historic cottage on day one in the township of St Bathan’s, day 2, 3 & 4 guests stay in High Country mutterer’s huts that are rustic and cosy. On day 5 guests stay in the shearer’s quarter’s at Dunstan Downs.

seasons: December to March

group size: Minimum of six guests and a maximum of ten guests.

ride length: Five days riding, five nights accommodation

2017/18 departure dates:

Stay tuned for more 2017/18 departure dates to be released!

2017 ride prices:

$3,480 NZD per person, based on twin-share on day eight.

*Single supplement is available on a request for an extra charge.

*This price includes transfers to and from Queenstown airport or accommodation.

*Price includes wine at dinner.


Accepted payment is by credit card only. There is a 2% surcharge on all credit card payments. Since you’ll be paying in a foreign currency, in this case NZD, we believe paying via credit card is the most cost effective and easiest option for you.

Why is the price quoted in NZ dollars?

With our overseas riding destinations (rides other than in Australia), the currency is dictated by our partner in that country which in this case is New Zealand. Therefore due to fluctuating exchange rates we have to quote in the same currency.


We recommend flying into Queenstown the day before the ride begins, so you’re ready for a pick-up from your hotel on day 1 of your ride. Please don’t book your return flights until after 4pm on the final day, so there is no rush getting back into town. Please remember transfers are only included on the first and final day of your ride.


Want to check out other rides run by John Wall and Angie Leckey in New Zealand? Click here to see the Twin Lakes Pack Trail itinerary, and here to look at the Lake Hawea and Hunter River Ride.

Discover the backbone to the Muster’s Mountain Trail, your guides John Wall and Angie Leckey here.

Flying in and out of Queenstown? Check out our blog post here about the best way to spend your day in this beautiful city.

To gain a true appreciation of the blow-your-socks-off landscape that you’ll encounter on this pack horse trip, you MUST watch this video.

Lisa Read

"Brilliant ride, be prepared for steep mountain climbs, stunning scenery, big horses, a real adventure."

Musters Mountain Pack Trail 10/01/2017

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