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Despite being featured in the Lord of the Rings, the hike to Lake Alta manages to avoid the crowds around Queenstown, offering a fun trail up to a beautiful lake. Perhaps the reason the masses miss this hike is the effort it takes to get there.
Starting out from the Remarkables Ski Field, the only way to access the trail in the Summer is a steep, winding road up from Queenstown (which costs NZD$10 in the summer). From the parking lot, the trail is well defined, as it climbs up to Lake Alta.
The lake itself is beautiful, and there are a couple of options for further hikes (with fantastic views) from its shores.
The trail to the right looks down on Queenstown, while to the left the trail leads up to Double Cone - a technical climb that requires proper equipment.