Toni Ellis, Fiordland District Office
This year marks 125 years since the Milford Track began drawing thousands of tourists from all parts of the world. To celebrate, a special heritage focused walk of the four-day 53.5km journey is scheduled—departing 31 October 2013.
The idea was hatched by local DOC Ranger, Ken Bradley, who wanted to gather track personalities together to tramp the four days in period costume, highlighting the unique and colourful history of the track.
From there the concept grew, with spaces being opened up to the public as a fundraiser for the restoration of Beech Hut; the official opening of the new Sutherland Falls Track being included; and the Minister of Conservation, Hon Nick Smith, confirming his attendance.
Those lucky enough to secure a spot on the walk can expect to be transported back in time by five expert guides—all specialists on the Milford Track. Their stories and experiences will bring the track to life, detailing history, culture and current biodiversity work in the area.
Many enjoy the Milford Track as a personal and physical challenge; while others enjoy witnessing the results brought about by the ongoing protection and regeneration of New Zealand’s native biodiversity. Heritage is yet another layer that contributes to the unique character and charm that makes the Milford Track Great Walk ‘The finest walk in the world’.