State Highway 6 follows the Makarora River for the majority of its course from just south of Haast Pass. A popular short walk leads to its confluence with the Blue River, at the aptly named Blue Pools.
In September 2007 a landslide in the Young River valley blocked off the corresponding stream. Young River is a tributary to Makarora River. The landslide created a new lake. The lake appears to be permanent.