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March 2011 Issue
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Kayak trail for Auckland

Jack Finn, on the Manukau Harbour, says a kayak trail 'makes complete sense'

Auckland Mayor Len Brown has included expanding kayaking and canoe options in his 100 projects he has committed to promoting in his first 100 days of office.

“By taking a good, considered look at the walking, cycling, kayaking and canoeing trails all around Auckland, we can make the best of this environment for Aucklanders to get out and get active, as well as putting Auckland on the map as a recreational and adventure destination for domestic and international visitors,” said Mayor Brown.

Manager of Auckland Council’s Parks, Sports and Recreation Department Ian Maxwell said the kayaking and canoe trails are being developed as part of Auckland’s wider recreational plan which also includes a range of walking and cycle trails and paths.

“The current proposal is that an initial kayak trail would be developed along the east coast of Auckland linking regional and local parks on the mainland and off shore islands,” he said. “We are also aiming to create a trail around the Auckland isthmus involving portaging of kayaks between the Waitemata and Manukau Harbours. Portaging distances are not great and would involve kayakers wheeling their vessels along connecting footpaths.”

Maxell said where possible existing campgrounds and facilities would be used to support the trails, but some additional facilities might be required.

Sea-kayak tour operator Jack Finn said the proposal “makes complete sense”.

Finn remembers having to drag his kayak down behind factories and onto muddy banks to get from one location to another.

He says improvements should include purpose built boat ramps or jetties as well as clearly marked kayak trails between harbours.

“You’ve got things like the Around the Bays run and beautiful walkways and cycleways so why not tap into sea-kayaking too?” said Finn. “It’s promoting activity, fitness and our environment.”

Anybody wishing to provide input and comments on this should contact Auckland Council’s Ian Maxwell directly: ian.maxwell@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz.

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