Dorothy Falls

Lake Kaniere / near Hokitika, West Coast Region (South Island), New Zealand

Rating: 1     Difficulty: 1
Dorothy Falls

TABLE OF CONTENTS



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INTRODUCTION

Dorothy Falls was sort of an obscure waterfall that Julie and I made a short detour to see while we were spending the better part of a late afternoon around the town of Hokitika. According to the LINZ-based topo maps, this waterfall was listed at 64m tall, but as you can see from the photo at the top of this page, it was significantly shorter than that. Perhaps we were only able to see the last 10-15m of the overall drop where the rest of its flow might be visible from the neighbouring Lake Kaniere if we were somehow able to get a boat and float our way onto the lake itself. Speaking of the lake, it was said to be one of the prettiest lakes in New Zealand and we can see why. During our visit, it was very peaceful and calm as it was fringed by native bush. If we had a little more time to spend here, we could easily foresee ourselves just chilling out and relaxing along the shores of the lake.

As for visiting this waterfall, it was very straightforward. Once we managed to drive to it (see directions below), we made it to a single-lane bridge where we could look directly at the falls. We were also able to walk along the creek to get even closer to the signed falls. But for all intents and purposes, this was a roadside waterfall.




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PHOTO JOURNAL

This was the view looking towards the attractive Lake Kaniere late on a partially sunny afternoon as we were making our way to Dorothy FallsThis was the view looking towards the attractive Lake Kaniere late on a partially sunny afternoon as we were making our way to Dorothy Falls
Before visiting Hokitika, we had spent the better part of the day at Arthur's Pass, where we spent a bit of time checking out the beautiful Devils Punchbowl FallsBefore visiting Hokitika, we had spent the better part of the day at Arthur's Pass, where we spent a bit of time checking out the beautiful Devils Punchbowl Falls
When we left Hokitika, we made a late two-hour drive to Franz Josef Glacier township where we did a glacier walk the next dayWhen we left Hokitika, we made a late two-hour drive to Franz Josef Glacier township where we did a glacier walk the next day
Looking along Lake Kaniere as we were making our way towards Dorothy FallsLooking along Lake Kaniere as we were making our way towards the falls

The signposted short track to Dorothy FallsThe signposted short track to the falls

View of Dorothy Falls from the single-lane bridgeView of the falls from the single-lane bridge

A little bit more contextual view of Dorothy Falls providing doubt that at least this part of the falls was 64m tallA little bit more contextual view of the falls providing doubt that at least this part of the falls was 64m tall


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VIDEOS OF THE FALLS




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DRIVING DIRECTIONS

The way we got to the falls was from the coastal town of Hokitika. Perhaps the most straightforward way to get to the falls (actually our return route) was from the junction of SH6 and Stratford St near the centre of town. Heading east on Stratford St, it became Kaniere Rd after about 1.5km. Then, we followed Kaniere Rd for the next 4km before keeping left at its junction with Kaniere-Kowhitirangi Rd and Lake Kaniere Rd. We then took Lake Kaniere Rd for the next 13km towards the north end of Lake Kaniere.

Turning left at the junction by the lake, we headed east on Hans Bay Rd as it followed the eastern shore of Lake Kaniere. After about 7.5km (becoming Dorothy Falls Rd along the way), we ultimately reached the falls, but we had to drive the last 4km or so on unsealed road, which was a little rough in spots (due to an apparent mud slide at the time).

Overall, this drive took us about 45 minutes or so from Hokitika, which was an charming town that I seemed to have several greenstone (jade) gem shops as well as a very good restaurant (I forgot the name). We didn't linger around enough to better appreciate its gold mining history.

For additional context, Hokitika was about 30 minutes (39km) south of Greymouth, 100 minutes drive (134km) north of Franz Josef Glacier, and well over 3 hours drive (245km) northwest of Christchurch.




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ITINERARIES

For more information about our itineraries involving this waterfall, check out the following links.




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MAP OF THE FALLS



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TRIP REPORTS

For more information about our experiences with this waterfall, check out the following travel stories.




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TRIP PLANNING RESOURCES




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NEARBY WATERFALLS




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