Depot Creek Falls

Mt Aspiring / Haast Pass, South Island, New Zealand

About Depot Creek Falls

Hiking Distance: 150m round trip
Suggested Time: 5 minutes

Date first visited: 2004-11-24
Date last visited: 2004-11-24

Waterfall Latitude: -43.96109
Waterfall Longitude: 169.24223

Waterfall Safety and Common Sense

Depot Creek Falls was a rather obscure and somewhat hidden cascade since it didn’t have any signs for it (unlike the other waterfalls we encountered in the Haast River Valley and Haast Pass vicinity).

We learned of this waterfall from an obscure waterfall marking on our Tumonz software combined with a trip report that came from a fellow waterfaller named Eugen Winklharrer.

Mt_Aspiring_NP_009_11232004 - Depot Creek Falls
Depot Creek Falls

When Julie and I went looking for it, we had placed a pre-trip waypoint in the area the waterfall was supposed to be so we had a rough idea of where to stop the car despite the lack of signs.

It actually took us a little while to get here from the Haast Junction because we kept getting distracted by numerous other waterfalls that seemed to be very significant yet didn’t have pullouts or signage acknowledging them.

In any case, once we stopped the car at an unsigned dirt area next to the bridge over Depot Creek (see directions below), we then took a somewhat used but overgrown informal path to get the view of Depot Creek Falls.

We didn’t do any other exploring to see if this informal path went anywhere else or if there was more to this waterfall than what met our eyes.

Mt_Aspiring_NP_001_11232004 - One of the side waterfalls (that I believe were ephemeral) that were near Depot Creek Falls when we saw it in November 2004. This waterfall didn't appear on our December 2009 visit
One of the side waterfalls (that I believe were ephemeral) that were near Depot Creek Falls when we saw it in November 2004. This waterfall didn’t appear on our December 2009 visit

In any case, it helped us break up the road fatigue since we had driven quite a distance to even get here from Franz Josef Glacier with still a ways more to even get to Queenstown.

The scramble that Julie and I went on only took a couple of minutes so for all intents and purposes, it was practically roadside.


Depot Creek Falls resides in Mt Aspiring National Park near Haast in the Otago region of South Island, New Zealand. It is administered under the jurisdiction of the Department of Conservation. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, visit their website.

Haast_003_11232004 - Driving along SH6 towards Knights Point just before the highway veered south into the Haast River Valley
Mt_Aspiring_NP_004_11232004 - Looking at a flat along the Haast River just as we were entering the Haast River Valley
Mt_Aspiring_NP_005_11232004 - This was another one of the impressive waterfalls that we saw in the Haast River Valley in November 2004. This was another one of the waterfalls that we saw in November 2004 but didn't see again in December 2009
Mt_Aspiring_NP_014_11232004 - Yet another obscure waterfall we saw a short distance east of Depot Creek Falls (could this be Dancing Falls?) in November 2004 but not again in December 2009

From the Haast Junction (119km south of Fox Glacier along the SH6), we drove about 24km along SH6 towards a roadside dirt cul-de-sac just past a short road bridge over Depot Creek.

This dirt lot was where we stopped the car.

If you happen to continue east and drive to Orman Falls (a roadside waterfall right besides SH6 without any formal pullouts so it’s hard to photograph), you went too far east.

For context, Fox Glacier was about 23km (30 minutes drive) south of Franz Josef, 196km (2.5 hours drive) south of Greymouth, and 402km (about 5.5km west of Christchurch). Coming from the other direction, Haast Pass was about 2 hours drive (147km) north of Queenstown along SH6.

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Tagged with: haast, aspiring, otago, west coast, south island, new zealand, waterfall, queenstown, wanaka, depot creek, southern alps

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Rebounding Fall in Haast Pass December 25, 2010 6:43 pm by Alan Baldwin - In March 2004 we were going from Wanaka towards Haast and stopped to visit the Blue Pools which were more of a muddy green at that time of the year. I was impressed by the number of small cairns built by previous visitors on a shingle bank in the river bed. As we climbed the… ...Read More

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Johnny Cheng

About Johnny Cheng

Johnny Cheng is the founder of the World of Waterfalls and author of the award-winning A Guide to New Zealand Waterfalls. Over the last 2 decades, he has visited thousands of waterfalls in over 40 countries around the world and nearly 40 states in the USA.
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