Brewster Hut

I asked a fellow traveler about his favorite place on the South Island, and he sent me to the Brewster Hut. So I hitched a ride down the curvy road from Wanaka to the west coast, and the young American couple in their camping bus dropped me off at the parking lot for “Fantail Falls”. I had to cross an icy stream, and then it went straight uphill through the forest.


The distance to the hut was less than 3km, but I had to negotiate about 1000m of elevation gain, and with my heavy backpack it proved to be rather challenging. But it was well worth the effort: I found a cozy little hut with a stunning view over an impressive mountain range – and I had it all to myself!

In the morning I got up before sunrise to scale the top behind the cabin, from where the view opened up to an even more incredible panorama.

View from Mount Armstrong

Brewster Glacier/Mt Brewster

Back down I had breakfast on the terrace in the warming sun, then I went to explore Brewster Glacier. I could go all the way up to it and even went inside a cave-like opening to marvel at the mysterious ice-blue light that seeped through the thinner parts of the glacier.

Ice-blue glacier light

Glacier Ice

On the way back it started snowing, and I decided to stay another night at the cabin…

Dramatic weather at Brewster Glacier

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