Victoria Forest Park, West Coast – March 2023
Kirwans Hut has a lot of charm.
Set in a small clearing near the bushline, the 12-bunk serviced hut affords a magnificent view along the length of Kā Tiritiri o te Moana/the Southern Alps as far as Aoraki/Mt Cook. It’s a sister hut to two others on the West Coast at Big Hut (also in Victoria Forest Park) and Ces Clarke Hut (on the Paparoa Range). All three were designed by a Wellington architect, and built by the Forest Service in the mid-1980s, near the end of its reign.
Recently the hut got some welcome attention, made possible through a grant from the Kaimahi for Nature (Jobs for Nature) programme, and orchestrated by the Backcountry Trust’s Ollie Clifton.