The Wilmot Pass Road was built to aid in the construction of the
Manapouri Power Station. A cantilevered wharf was built at Deep Cove, so
that supplies could be shipped into Doubtful Sound and where necessary,
trucked over the Main Divide. It took two years for the road to be carved
out of mountain and bush (from 1963 to 1965), with a length of approx. 20 Km
and the highest point of the Pass being 2100 feet. The road was built to
better-than-usual standards to take massive transporters, and is now used by
tourist and fishing operators.
It is one of the few roads that traverses Fiordland National Park and offers
magnificent views of river valleys, wild mountain scenery and cascading
waterfalls. At the top of the Pass a grand view into beautiful and magical
Doubtful Sound may be obtained.
The road can only be accessed from West Arm on Lake Manapouri and Doubtful
Sound. West Arm and Doubtful Sound can only be reached by boat or plane.
Tourist operators run trips to Doubtful Sound, crossing Lake Manapouri and
transporting passengers by bus over the Wilmot Pass.