I didn’t see any, but if trolls exist I think they’d live here. Not the purple-haired ones. They’d live in some stylish place like Milan. But the ones from fairy tales, ancient like the forest itself. Walking through the forest here is mesmerizing. This forest seems to be alive in the sense that they carry an ancient wisdom. This is the type of forest that wakes up at night and starts walking around, with faces in their towering trunks.
From the Marble Hill campsite you can start a walk to the doc hut at Lake Daniels. It runs through the forest with rivers next to you for most of the time. The track is easy and seemed recently restored. There are many boardwalk so you don’t have to walk through the mud and in many places doc’s distributed small grey pebbles to create a path. It’s also fairly level and would be easy with or without a backpack to stay the night.
For me it was an early morning walk. While many people were still hiding in their campers, I started walking. It was overcast and it made the forest somewhat dark and depressing. Who knows what’s hiding in these woods besides trolls? As I continued the sun started trying to break through the clouds and finally made its entrance when I arrived at the lake. It was just me, the sandflies and a little curious bird, who was eager to pick up my leftovers.
From the hut you look out over lake Daniels. There is a little jetty and from there the water looks crystal clear and you can see the stones at the bottom. The hut is fairly big, with some pots and pans and a wood stove. To me, this is the true New Zealand experience. Unfortunately the sandflies weren’t the only ones flying around. I’d seen a few wasps already, but got stung by the one I didn’t see. It seemed to have landed on my foot and got pressed into my ankle as I climbed up some steps. And intense pain shot through my foot. I was almost at the end of the walk and was thankful for it. Now, a week later I’ve still got an itchy souvenir on my foot. The Lewis pass is not super popular among tourist, but it just doesn’t want to be forgotten.