|This Central Otago walk follows the Clutha River on the true right bank between Alexandra and Clyde. Although graded as ‘easy’ it is 12.8km and will take 3-4 hours to complete. It is a popular walking and cycle track, with sections suitable for pushchairs or wheelchairs. The track stays within 20 meters of the river and mostly in the shade of large willow trees. A fantastic walk or bike with the kids for a day out and especially good in the height of summer when shade is appreciated. There are numerous spots to stop and picnic or just enjoy the ambiance.
From the Alexandra end the track is signposted 300 meters along Earnscleugh Road from SH8. Here there is a car park and Information Kiosk, the first of several you will see explaining features of the track and landscape. Access is also possible from the Alexandra Bridge along the riverside track. The only exit from the track by vehicle is at Marshall Road, approx. 1-1.5 hours from the Alexandra end.
The track follows the river upstream through the historic Earnscleugh Tailings. This area was extensively dredged in the early 1900’s and yielded many tons of gold. It was hard, noisy work and a complete contrast to the peacefulness of today. As dredge technology improved the gravel heaps altered their appearance and these changes can clearly be seen. There are some artifacts remaining scattered about and these should not be touched as the area is regarded as an ‘outside museum’. The Tailings are protected and are on conservation land.
The track ends at the Clyde Bridge from which you can explore the township at Clyde or make your way back to Alexandra via the Otago Central Rail Trail.