Makarora River

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Makarora River
River Makarora flows into Lake Wanaka.jpg
The Makarora River flows into northern end of Lake Wanaka.
Country New Zealand
Basin features
Main source Mount Aspiring National Park
River mouth Lake Wanaka
300 m (980 ft)
Physical characteristics
Length 35 km (22 mi)

The Makarora River is in the Otago region of the South Island of New Zealand.


The headwaters are in Mount Aspiring National Park, on the eastern flanks of the Southern Alps near Haast Pass, which is the saddle between the Makarora and Haast River valleys. The Makarora River flows south into the northern end of Lake Wanaka after passing the small community of Makarora. The river attracts some recreational fishing, jetboating and kayaking. Rainbow and brown trout migrate from Lake Wanaka up the river and its tributaries to spawn, mainly in autumn and winter.[1]

State Highway 6 follows the Makarora River for the majority of its course from just south of Haast Pass. A popular[2] short walk leads to its confluence with the Blue River, at the aptly named Blue Pools.[3]


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.

The Makarora River near West Makarora township.

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Coordinates: 44°13′48″S 169°13′34″E / 44.23000°S 169.22611°E / -44.23000; 169.22611