Deerford Loop Track, Ruahine Forest Park

Up and down in an afternoon Deerford Loop Track starts with a flat walk over farmland before heading down into the bush. It seems easy to start, until looking…

Distance
5.32km
Time
3h
Grade
Easy

Wharite Peak, Ruahine Forest Park

The mist was still lingering in the early morning sun, making the forest eerie. Intermittent sunrays probed their way through the trees, the forest still except for the occasional…

Distance
4.84km to summit
Time
6-8hr return
Grade
Moderate/Difficult

Dianes Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

The northern Ruahine, accessed from the Napier-Taihape road, is an area steeped in colonial history. Much of the area was farmed in the late 1800s and evidence is still…

Distance
11.4km
Time
Car park to Shutes Hut, 2.5-3.5hr; To Dianes Hut, 3-4hr
Grade
Moderate

Makaretu Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

Foreboding and gnarly with a dark, threatening backdrop, or serene and inviting with early morning rays tentatively touching the snow capped tops, the Ruahine and Kaweka ranges can’t disguise…

Distance
18.5km
Time
Car park to Longview Hut, 1.5-2.5hr; To Makaretu Hut, 3-4hr; To Awatere Hut, 3-4hr; To car park, 1-2hr
Grade
Easy/Moderate

Hinerua Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

Hinerua Hut, located on the eastern side of the Ruahine Range, is a small four-bunker perched in a clearing among the beech trees near the bushline. Access is possible…

Distance
8.4km from Hinerua Road
Time
From Mill Road, 3.5-4hr; From Hinerua Road, 3.5-4hr; From North Block Road via Smiths Stream Hut, 4.5-6hr
Grade
Moderate

Whanganui Journey, Whanganui National Park

A multi-day river journey that penetrates a wilderness of gorges, waterfalls, rapids and unbroken tracts of lowland forest – all of it steeped in culture and history. Paddlers usually…

Grade
Easy/Moderate

Waikamaka Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

There are some huts that you keep returning to throughout your life, not because they are especially close to home, but because they feel like home. Waikamaka Hut is…

Distance
6.7km to hut
Time
5hr
Grade
Easy/Moderate

The Bridge to Nowhere, Whanganui National Park

Deep in Whanganui National Park, spanning the Mangapurua Stream, sits a 40m-long arch bridge, known as the Bridge to Nowhere. The simplest way to get there requires a 40-minute…

Distance
2.5km
Time
From Pipriki to the Mangapurua Landing, 40min; Landing to bridge, 40min
Grade
Easy

Waterfall Hut via Waikamaka Hut, Ruahine Range

From North Block Road end, go up the greywacke staircase of the Waipawa River, heading for Waipawa Saddle, which is a clearly defined like a scoop. Above it rise…

Distance
23.6km
Time
North Block Rd to Waikamaka Hut via Waikamaka Saddle, 4-5hr; To Waterfall Hut via Rangioteatua 6-8hr; To North Block Road via Wakamaka Hut, 6.5hr
Grade
Moderate

Northern Ruahine Range tops loop, Ruahine Forest Park

This four-day backcountry tramp involves a 33km loop, taking in the Ruahine tops, with the chance to swim in tarns and traverse knife-edge ridges. The majority of the trek…

Distance
33.5km
Time
Road end to Iron Peg, 4.5-5hr; Iron Peg to Tiraha bivy, 8-9hr; Tiraha bivy to Maungamahue, 6-7hr; Maungamahue to road end, 5hr
Grade
Difficult

Mangaweka via Purity Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

There’s something satisfying about reaching the highest point of a significant land mass, but this often involves several days of time and strenuous effort. Not so in the Ruahines.…

Distance
8.3km to Mangaweka
Time
To Purity Hut, 3-4hr; Hut to Mangaweka return, 5hr
Grade
Easy/Moderate

Waterfall Hut via Hinerua Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

It’s long day’s walk to Waterfall Hut, an historic hut at the head of the Kawhatau River and located on a beautiful sand bank at the confluence of Waterfall…

Distance
13.5km to hut
Time
9-11hr to hut
Grade
Moderate/Difficult

Burn Hut, Tararua Forest Park

Burn Hut is in the northern Tararua Forest Park, not far from Shannon. The access road is gravel and winds its way towards the Mangahao Hydro Electric Power Station…

Distance
5.36km to hut
Time
3hr
Grade
Easy

Matemateaonga Track, Whanganui National Park

Matemateaonga is a comfortable four-day walk. Most people walk the track from west to east, starting at Kohi Saddle. This approach is largely flat with a downhill to the…

Distance
36.3km
Time
3-4 days
Grade
Easy/Moderate

Rangiwahia Hut via Deadmans Track, Ruahine Forest Park

Deadmans Track begins as an open easy trail through red beech and is typical of many tracks in the Ruahines in that it heads straight up for the first…

Distance
12.3km
Time
Car park to Rangiwahia Hut via Deadmans Track, 5-6hr and Rangiwahia Hut to car park, 2-3hr
Grade
Moderate

Top Gorge Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

Top Gorge Hut is a hidden treasure in the Ruahine Ranges. Visited by maybe a dozen trampers or hunters a year, the hut is tucked up on a flat…

Distance
5.88km
Time
4hr
Grade
Moderate

Cattle Creek Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

For trampers who can spare just one night away, for whatever reason, the Ruahine Ranges, with a huge variety of huts a relatively short walk from the road end,…

Distance
8.01km
Time
4hr
Grade
Easy

Triangle Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

From Renfrew Road end, take the well-maintained track to Rangiwahia Hut (1300m). Continue along the tops, much of which are exposed and may require ice axes and crampons in…

Distance
9.86km
Time
8-10hr
Grade
Moderate

Pourangaki Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

To make the most of this weekend trip, start it on Friday night with a 1-2hr walk to Rangiwahia Hut (13 bunks). The following morning, head up the ridge…

Distance
12.4km
Time
2-3 days

Leon Kinvig Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

From the Limestone Road end car park, climb to the high ridges of the Ngamoko Range via Knights Track. Like all Ruahine Forest Park tracks, there are no gentle…

Distance
7.53km
Time
5-7hr
Grade
Moderate

Waikamaka Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

The marked track up the Waipawa River is not accessible so this is a wet feet river bash – some 20 crossings are required on the way to Waipawa…

Distance
6.65km
Time
4-5hr
Grade
Moderate

Iron Gates Gorge, Ruahine Forest Park

A comfortable day walk for those wanting to enjoy a mix of easy bush and river travel. Iron Gates Gorge is a narrow chasm where the Oroua River squeezes…

Distance
3.51km
Time
1.5-2hr
Grade
Easy

Atene Skyline Track, Whanganui National Park

Climbing steeply from the road through lowland forest to a height of 572m, Skyline Track circles Puketapu Hill which was once a fortified hill-top pa. Puketapu translates to scared…

Distance
13.8km
Time
5-7hr
Grade
Moderate