Copland Track is a very popular hiking and tramping track in the South Island of New Zealand. This popular tramp gives a glimpse of Westland’s spectacular forest, river and mountain scenery, with natural hot pools at Welcome Flat an added attraction.
Note: True left and true right refer to the side of the valley or river when facing and looking downstream.
Warning: When Rough Creek is running high, all unbridged side creeks on the walk will also be running high and you will not be able to cross them safely. Do not start the walk in these conditions. There is a flooded bridge across Rough Creek for emergency use to exit the valley (located 45 minutes upstream from the car park).
Cross Rough Creek to the orange marker on the other side then follow the well-formed path through the forest. The track is marked across open areas and river crossings by orange triangle markers. From the confluence of the Karangarua River to Architect Creek, the track alternates mostly between boulder hopping on the rocky riverbed and forest tracks, with occasional grassy clearings. Architect Creek is considered to be roughly halfway to Welcome Flat.
Warning: There are two active landslide areas to be crossed on the track to Welcome Flat Hut. The landslide areas are approximately 30 minutes upstream of Architect Creek and on the true left of Shiels Creek. Both are signposted. Due to unstable slopes, you will need to take particular care during and just after heavy rain.