I live in Manapouri now and highly recommend the trip to doubtful but do advise that you take a tour, if you try to trek it independently you will miss visiting the power station, also there is no real road access despite what the maps say, just ask if you want any more info,
Hi there Brian,
I recently took a trip along the Borland road from Monowai into Fiordland in a 4x4. The road is easy and possibly ok for a large 2wd until South Arm of Manapouri lake with beautiful scenery and very few people.
However, if you wish to continue to West Arm and the power station officially this is only open to walkers and mountain bikes. We did actually drive up the road as the gate was open and this followed the route of the power cables for roughly 20kms close to the power station - it was probably built for construction of the pylons.
It is a very rough and steep track with dangerous drops of several hundred feet. I am not sure of your 4wd ability but ours was a very capable truck and we turned round as we only had one vehicle, no mountain radio and didn't fancy being stranded.
A tour would fulfill your desire to see the beauty and would be a safer option. If you find a group to do the mountain bike route that would probably be awesome. As for 4x4, I would talk to someone who has done the whole route before setting off and remember it is officially only open to MTB and hikers and is very remote.
Good luck and be safe. hope this helps.
Thanks for the info fella.
Will prob. go and take a look there as there's a few walking tracks around, and will get to the Sound via the Ferry by the looks of things.