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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 14, Issue 3 (June 1, 1939)


(Photo., W. T. Hanna). A frozen waterfall near Big Bluff, Lewis Pass Road.

(Photo., W. T. Hanna).
A frozen waterfall near Big Bluff, Lewis Pass Road.

The completion of the Lewis Pass Road over the divide into the West Coast, down to the famous Buller Gorge has opened up a new route to the tourist which the Railway Department's road services have pioneered with great success. It is possible to travel from Christchurch to Westport in a day crammed with an extraordinary variety of scenery at every altitude up to nearly three thousand feet.

The holiday traveller by road objects to duplicating his route, and this has been one of the handicaps of the South Island from the tourist aspect. But the trouble is disappearing, for the Department's road services provide two crossings of the mountain range, and thus make possible attractive and varied round trips. The second of the crossings is up into the high altitudes of Arthur Pass, among the snowfields, which are reached quite comfortably, if thrillingly by the motor, thus giving the traveller close-up views of the vivid grandeur of the Otira Gorge which can only be faintly suggested to those who take advantage of that remarkable engineering achievement, the Otira Tunnel.