Stag Saddle Ridge Alternate
The Stag Saddle Ridge Alternate is a short but worthy alternate of the Te Araroa. It provides amazing views of Lake Tekapo and the surrounding peaks.
About the Route.
The route goes from just after Camp Stream Hut to Stag Saddle proper. You will leave the Te Araroa at Stag Saddle if you are walking Southbound and join again just before Camp Stream Hut. You will do the opposite if you are walking Northbound. This route is off the maintained trail and does require a bit of navigation to get onto the ridge itself. Once on the ridge, there is a use trail from the many people who have walked it. You can use Michael Deckebach's website for more information and maps.
Things to Consider.
We did the Stag Saddle Ridge Alternate and loved it. The views were awesome and we were glad to not be walking down in the tussock filled valley. Many people we met who had done this alternate were amazed that the official TA does not walk on this ridgeline. All of the positive reviews led us to try it too. If you have the chance we recommend it!