As many of the familiar and well liked hiking tracks in the Auckland region are now closed or under heavy restriction due to Kauri Die Back Disease, the alternative tracks don’t appear to be widely know or advertised.
Below is a list of the tracks we know, which are tend to be between a couple of hours and halve a day in length.(*1)
- Please stay on the marked tracks to help with Kauri Die back and keeping the tracks small.
- All the car parks described are free public car parks, some may bet busy and fully after hours and particularly weekends
- The Google map coordinates supplied show the car park locations, you can either copy and paste these coordinates, or click on them to be taken to the relevant location on Google maps.
Hike: Mt Auckland Glorit. Track cross rough and swampy farm land on each end with native bush in middle. Highly Recommend Hiking boots. One track, either 6.5km one way,(2 cars) or slightly less summit return.(recommend via the airstrip end) Farm entry can be closed 1 August to 30 September yearly. Car Parks: Either from Kaipara Hills Road (Degrees: Google maps: -36.469595, 174.469714) OR Kaipara Coast Highway (Degrees: Google maps: -36.452259, 174.434711)
Hike & Walk: Mt Tamahunga Omaha, A “workout walk,” popular with the locals, 6.3km to summit (return) (there is the option to extend along the ridge a bit. Recommend hiking shoes or boots but not essential. Car Park: Omaha Valley Road (Degrees: Google Maps -36.313936, 174.725999)
Hike & Walk: Mangawhai Cliff Walkway Mangawhai From the car park, out and return on the cliff tops or return along the beach at low tide. Recommend walking shoes, 8.8km Return. Car Park: Mangawhai Beach Car park.(Degrees:Google Maps -36.081077, 174.597243)
- Hike & Walk: Beverley Price Loop Track. Pohuehue This is a 6.6km loop track including bush and forest road. Recommend walking shoes or boots. Car park: Near the bottom of the Pohuehue viaduct on the left heading to Walkworth(Degrees: Google Maps: -36.452990, 174.652347)
- Walk: McElroy Scenic Reserve(walk no. 40) Mahurangi West. Bit over grown and some cutty grass so highly recommend long pants – a couple of options totally 45-60minutes. Car Park: On Cowan Bay Road.(Degrees:Goggle Maps -36.453058, 174.690809)
- Walk: Exhibition Drive, Titirangi. A very popular exercise track following the now closed section of the old Exhibition Drive. The surface is tar sealed with some gravel, gradient flat and flanked by native bush. 6.70km (return) between the two car parks. Shoes are fine, bikes and prams also. When I was last there a further 4km (return) of gravel walking track had been added to the end to link to the Arataki Visitors centre on Scenic Drive. Car Park: The main car park is small and very popular at the intersection of Woodland Park Road and Scenic Drive(Degrees: Google Maps: -36.937225, 174.644219) The second smaller car park is at the top of Exhibition Drive from Huia Road (Degrees: Google Maps: -36.950582, 174.621197)
- Walk: Lake Wainamu Bethells Beach. A small parcel or reserve centred around a fresh water lake and massive inland sand dunes. You can walk up the shallow creek or follow the track on land. The track circles the lake – 1-2hours walking – great scenery. Beware in summer its extremely popular. Car park: Bethells Road, 50m Past the intersection with Tasman View Road (Degrees: Google Maps: -36.883529, 174.452016)
- Walk/Hike: Whatipu Caves and Beach Whatipu – West Coast. A short walk that takes you to caves one of which was known as the Ballroom as it was so large it was equipped with wooden falls and used dance venue in the past, from there is a short walk on a raw unspoilt west coast beach, which you can day hike all the way to Karekare beach if you choose. Car park: At the end of Whatipu Road, Huia(narrow winding gravel road) (Degrees: Google Maps: -37.039433, 174.507323)
- Walk: Huia Dam Road Parau With the linked tracks now closed for kauri die back, you can still walk to the dam via the watercare dam road that is open to the public during daylight hours. Gravel road with tunnels at the dam end.
Keep an eye on this post, as I will be updating the tracks over time. Please do let me know if i have missed any tracks you know, they might be new to me too.
(*1) Estimating just how long a hike will take unknown individuals is i find just about as difficult as telling a stranger how hard a track will be for them. Please take times as a guide for beginners.