Sit in the Ladies Waiting Room (all that’s left of a busy station) and see if you can spot a lizard amongst the native plants outside.
The Galloway Flats were a welcome sight to early gold miners who were heading to the Dunstan Diggings from Dunedin. There were no roads for these guys, but the Dunstan Trail, which traversed four rugged ranges, ended here. You can still link with the Old Dunstan Road from here and reach the Poolburn Dam (Lord of the Rings Rohan site) via this road, but good weather and a 4WD vehicle are necessary.
The original Galloway Sheep Station homestead (1860s) can be seen from the Trail, and the nearby Olrig Gangers’ Shed has an information panel (as they all do), as well as a topographic panel. Like several other Railway buildings, the Ladies Waiting Room has been returned to its original site – and it now has a display of petrified wood.
Galloway is also known to soil conservationists – “saltpans” once covered more than 40,000 hectares of land in the southern parts of New Zealand, now there is less than 100 hectares left – you can see them here from the Trail. A conservation covenant is now in place to protect this rare saltpan area and to conserve its distinctive insects and plants.
Look out for a short but steep side road to the Lower Manorburn Dam where you can swim – but if it’s a really cold winter ice skates will be more useful.