Lake Dunstan Trail – Cromwell to Clyde (Under Construction)

The Trail

The trail will follow the true right of Lake Dunstan from Pisa Moorings to Bannockburn, and then through the gorge to the Dunstan Arm Rowing Club, near Clyde. Work started in June. 2019… Once completed, the trail will form part of 536km of new trails connecting Cromwell to other Central Otago, Queenstown and Wanaka trails.

The 54km, yet-to-be-completed trail is part of the $26million New Zealand Cycle Trail Project, funded by the Government, the Central Lakes Trust and the Otago Community Trust.

Central Otago Queenstown Trail Network Trust chairman Stephen Jeffery is pleased with progress, which was being made at two different parts.


One contractor, Wilson & Keen, started north of Pisa Moorings and will go to the Bannockburn Bridge and then to Cornish Point, just south of Cromwell.

A second contractor, M3, has started at Cornish Point and in Clyde.

Those two contractors are doing the bulk of the trail construction. A third contractor, Cliff Care, is doing some trail construction, along with rock scaling and clip-on bridge work.


Cliff Care has started drilling holes on various sections of the trail where the bluff bridges will extend out above the lake at points where it has been identified as the most practical solution.

Once completed, the trail will form part of 536km of new trails connecting Cromwell to other Central Otago, Queenstown and Wanaka trails.




Check out and ride the first completed section of this trail

This easy Central Otago bike ride is suitable for the whole family. Sidling along the shoreline of Lake Dunstan from Old Cromwell Town up to Lowburn and return. Expect a flat and smooth trail with some sandy sections which follows a single or 4WD track.

Starting at Old Cromwell Town, head north beside Lake Dunstan passing under Cromwell Bridge, otherwise known as Deadmans Point, before meandering along the shoreline through McNulty Inlet and heading along the lake to finish at the Lowburn Collie Club.

From here, cross over the main highway skirting the Lowburn Peninsula inlet and on to the relocated Lowburn hall and church. This is worth a visit. Read the plaques taken from the Lowburn Bridge now housed in the hall that tell the story about this 1930’s concrete Bridge still in existence under the lake today. Now follow the track around the inlet to the lake for the final section past the 45th Parallel marker and to the Collie Club.
Dappled shade from the extensive tree plantings will be a welcome relief on a hot summer’s day. But don’t be surprised by the strong north-westerly winds that blow down the lake – which is all the more reason to take a moment to marvel at the treeless vistas mixed in with the ordered symmetry of the nearby vineyards and orchards along the way.

On the return, if you have the time take the additional 9 km loop up Lowburn Valley Road, into Heaney Road, and back on to the track at the lake via Burn Cottage Road. This mix of gravel and sealed roads will be like a pleasant rural escape bursting with colour from the nearby Central Otago vineyards and orchards particularly in spring and autumn.

Of course your experience is not complete without a stop at the roadside orchard stalls for your fresh fruit in season. On your return, call into one of the winery cellar doors or make sure you treat yourself to a leisurely coffee and stroll around Old Cromwell Town.

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