Transport & Services
Roads and transport
Although not serviced by public transport the Lake Coleridge area is easily accessible by private car or chartered vehicles. Methven i-SITE Visitor Centre can assist with travel plans.
Once in the area the roads can be safely travelled by cars and buses. From Lake Coleridge Village onwards the roads are gravel, but generally kept in good condition.
In inclement winter weather it is wise to check road conditions on www.selwyn.govt.nz. During winter, the Lyndon Road is not maintained so is officially closed and while it can often still be travelled, especially with a 4WD vehicle, you do so at your own risk.
Retail and fuel
There are no shops or petrol stations in Lake Coleridge Village.
Fuel can be purchased at Windwhistle where the garage is open Monday-Friday 9am-5pm. Outside these hours it is advisable to top up fuel and other supplies in Darfield or Methven, which are the nearest towns with a full range of services, before travelling into the Lake Coleridge area.
Advance booking is often required for accommodation, evening meals and activities. Daytime cafes are available at Terrace Downs Resort and on weekends at Mt Hutt Lodge (12 noon onwards).
Cellphone coverage is available, but there are many areas with no reception because of the mountainous terrain.
Climate - Air so Crisp You Can Taste It
Like other South Island alpine areas, the Lake Coleridge region is subject to the vagaries of a high country climate. Frosty mornings and clear blue skies are a feature of winter, while summer can bring hot, dry days.
Winter temperatures around 10°C with summer temperatures averaging 20° - 22°C are typical. Throughout the year the region can be buffeted by strong norwesterly winds. Snow is not uncommon in the winter and after a period of hard frosts, frozen lakes attract a keen following from ice skaters.
Where to Stay in the Lake Coleridge Basin
The Lake Coleridge area is serviced by a variety of accommodation options from waterside campsites to luxury resort accommodation.
Dining options range from self-catering to silver-service dining. The nearest retail outlets are in Methven, so if you are intending to self-cater you need to bring in provisions from outside.
To avoid disappointment it is advisable to book your accommodation, dining and activities in advance.
Location - Just A Stone's Throw Away
Much of the appeal of the Lake Coleridge area lies in its central location. When considering travel times, the entrance to the Lake Coleridge area at Windwhistle or the Rakaia Gorge is approximately:
50 minutes from Christchurch International Airport
20 minutes from the gateway to Mt Hutt ski field
20 minutes from a full range of services in the ski town of Methven
To travel from either the Rakaia Gorge or Windwhistle up to Lake Coleridge Village, it takes about 25 minutes.
The drive from Lake Coleridge Village to the head of the lake takes just under an hour.