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Cattle Creek Hut, Ruahine Forest Park

Ruahine Forest Park
Cattle Creek Hut (standard, 8 bunks); Stanfield Hut (8 bunks)
Tamaki West Road, accessible off SH2 south of Dannevirke via Law Rd and Top Grass Rd
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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, are perfect.

This trip to Cattle Creek Hut (8 bunks) begins with a short, sharp climb up Holmes Ridge Track. It is possible to travel up the Tamaki River, too, but this route requires around 60 crossings of the river and should not be attempted during or after heavy rain.

Cross the river to reach the start of the track up to the ridge. Once on the ridge it is a nice undulating walk along the tops.

After about 90-minutes, the track drops down to the riverbed which we followed, crossing the river several times, to Stanfield Hut (8 bunks) which is a nice spot for a break or lunch.

From the hut, the track heads uphill again, through regenerating podocarp and more tops travel. Around two hours after leaving Stanfield Hut, an intersection where the track descends steeply to Cattle Creek is reached.

The hut sits on a terrace on the opposite bank of the creek.