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February 2016 Issue
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No. 4 – Complete a long-distance cycle trail

One of the many great swingbridges on the Timber Trail. Photo: Dave Mitchell

No New Zealand cycle trail has a track packed in so much history, so many massive swingbridges and so much good riding, as the 85km Pureora Timber Trail. From the old logging town of Pureora at the northern end, the track winds its way through a tongue of bush where the bird life is amazing. Great views over the Hauhungaroa Ranges appear by magic from the high point of the track below Mt Pureora, followed by a legendary downhill to Piropiro.

There are shelters and toilets along the way and at the halfway point a campsite. Or a short detour will have you at Black Fern Lodge which offers food and accommodation.

Next up is one of New Zealand’s longest and highest swingbridges, then a short climb followed by seemingly endless downhill cruising and the amazing Ongarue Rail Spiral and tunnel, with loads of interpretive signs that bring the steam and logging history back to life. It all ends at Ongarue with a scenic 24km shuttle back to Taumarunui.

If you enjoyed this ride, try….

Waikato River Trail

Following New Zealand’s longest river for over 100km from Arapuni to Atiamuri near Lake Taupo.

West Coast Wilderness Trail

Heads south from Greymouth, stops in at Hokitika and eventually ends in Ross, 135km from the starting point.

Roxburgh Gold Trail

Combine this 34km ride with the Clutha Gold Trail, 76km, and ride all the way to Lawrence following the Clutha, the South Island’s longest river