Browning Hut

Browning Hut
Mount Richmond Forest Park


Browning Hut is located on Browning Track, which doubles as Te Araroa Trail, in Mt Richmond Forest Park. The hut is great for overnight trips from Hacket car park, and a convenient stopover on multi-day tramps along the Mt Richmond section of Te Araroa Trail. Browning Track climbs through mixed beech-podocarp forest and is located only short respective distances from Hacket Hut and Totara Saddle, the latter being where Browning Track, Pelorus Track and Rocks Hut Track converge.

Browning Hut is the third-closest hut to Nelson City and is also the fourth hut on the Mt Richmond section of the Te Araroa Trail.

 

Map Viewer

 Trail Access

Hacket track begins at Hacket car park, 8 km up Aniseed Valley Road and 25 min drive from Richmond (see Access tab above). There are toilets at the car park and a bridge across the Roding River, beneath which there is a great swimming hole to cool off in during summer.

Several companies offer drop-off, pick-up and car relocation services to and from Hacket car park.

 

 Trail Descriptions
 Hacket car park to Browning Hut
Distances:  8.1 km one way from Hacket car park  3.4 km one way from Hacket Hut Time Required:  3 hr one way from Hacket car park  1 hr one way from Hacket Hut
Trail Type:  4WD road/Walking track/Tramping track Physical Difficulty:  Moderate   
Uses:  Walking and trail running Dog Access:  Permit required for Mt Richmond Forest Park; see Nelson DOC office
Start Elevation:  120 m (Hacket car park) Finish Elevation:  480 m (Browning Hut)
Distances:  8.1 km one way from Hacket car park  3.4 km one way from Hacket Hut
Time Required:  3 hr one way from Hacket car park  1 hr one way from Hacket Hut
Trail Type:  4WD road/Walking track/Tramping track
Physical Difficulty:  Moderate   
Uses:  Walking and trail running
Start Elevation:  120 m (Hacket car park)
Finish Elevation:  810 m (Browning Hut)

Beginning at Hacket car park, the track bridges Roding River and heads east up Hacket Valley, following the true right of Hacket Creek through plantation forest. A suspension bridge crosses the creek and the road becomes a walking track as it continues on the true left. The track enters the Dun Mountain ophiolite (mineral) belt (the boundary of Mt Richmond Forest Park) where the surrounding vegetation becomes stunted scrub dominated by manuka, with celery pine and lancewood and outcrops of ultramafic rock rich in chromite, olivine and serpentine. Soon the scrub of the mineral belt is replaced by douglas fir plantation, which continues for the rest of the distance to the fork with Browning Track.

Turn left at the fork and cross Hacket Creek and Browning Creek soon after. Browning Creek is crossed again and Browning Track reaches a junction with Te Araroa Trail. Turn left to get to Browning Hut; turning right will take you to Hacket Hut, 1.3 km away. From here to the hut, Browning Track doubles as Te Araroa Trail. The track crosses Browning Creek again, and heads through native forest, deviating from Browning Creek and instead climbing in and out of the unnamed creek gully. You will reach a section where you will need to clamber over car-size boulders have crashed down into the creek gully. The remainder of the distance to the hut passes through attractive native forest that contains hard beech, rimu, totara, celery pine and kahikatea.

Browning Hut is located on the edge of a clearing, 25 m away from Browning Creek, the hut’s water source. Do not be surprised to find the hut at full capacity, given its position on the increasingly popular Te Araroa Trail.

 

Browning Hut
Hut Type:  Standard Hut Capacity:  8 bunks Bookings:  Not required; first in, first served Fee:  1 Standard Hut ticket
Facilities:  Woodburner, mattresses. Some space for tents outside. Water source is exterior rain tank. Altitude:  480 m

 

 

 Rocks Hut to Browning Hut
Length:  10.7 km one way Time Required:  5-6 hr
Trail Type:  Tramping track Physical Difficulty:  Moderate   
Uses:  Walking and trail running Direction:  Either
Start Elevation:  810 m (Rocks Hut) Finish Elevation:  480 m (Browning Hut)
Distances:  10.7 km one way
Time Required:  5-6 hr
Trail Type:  Tramping track
Physical Difficulty:  Moderate   
Uses:  Walking and trail running
Start Elevation:  810 m (Rocks Hut)
Finish Elevation:  480 m (Browning Hut)

From Rocks Hut, Te Araroa Trail undulates through beech forest along a broad ridge on the fringe of the Dun Mountain mineral belt, and traverses a series of small knobs along the way. After 2-3 hr the track emerges into an area of scrub and tussock, which allow good views of the Richmond Ranges. The track descends steeply to Totara Saddle and converges with Pelorus Track. From here Te Araroa Trail doubles as Browning Track, and it is a relatively short descent to Browning Hut.

 

 Roebuck Hut to Browning Hut (Pelorus Track)
Length:  8.7 km one way Time Required:  3-4 hr
Trail Type:  Tramping track Physical Difficulty:  Moderate   
Uses:  Walking Direction:  Either
Start Elevation:  200 m (Roebuck Hut) Finish Elevation:  480 m (Browning Hut)
Distances:  8.7 km one way
Time Required:  3-4 hr
Trail Type:  Tramping track
Physical Difficulty:  Moderate   
Uses:  Walking
Start Elevation:  200 m (Roebuck Hut)
Finish Elevation:  480 m (Browning Hut)

From Roebuck Hut, Pelorus Track climbs steeply up a ridge between the respective valleys of Mates Creek and Roebuck Creek, and then sidles the beech-forested hillside for several kilometres, on the southern side of Roebuck Creek. The track gradually climbs toward Totara Saddle, where it connects with Te Araroa Trail and Browning Track. From here Te Araroa Trail doubles as Browning Track, and it is a relatively short descent to Browning Hut.

 

 Beyond Browning Hut
Browning Hut to… Distance and Time
Roebuck Hut 8.7 km, 3-4 hr
Rocks Hut 10.7 km, 5-6 hr
Hacket Hut 3.4 km, 1 hr
Starveall Hut 8.9 km, 5-6 hr
Browning Hut to…
Roebuck Hut:   8.7 km, 3-4 hr
Rocks Hut:   10.7 km, 5-6 hr
Hacket Hut:   3.4 km, 1 hr
Starveall Hut:   8.9 km, 5-6 hr

Comments are closed.