The gentle four-day walk around Lake Waikaremoana is a back-country experience set deep in the heart of Te Urewera. A water taxi is required to ferry walkers to or from Hopuruahine Landing.
Onepoto to Panekire Hut
From Onepoto Shelter, the track will test lungs and legs with a strenuous ascent to Panekire Bluff. Views over the lake are spectacular, although the exposure is too and trampers would do well to watch their feet. From here, the track follows an undulating ridgeline to 36 bunk Panekire Hut.
Panekire Hut to Waiopaoa Hut
It begins with a gradual descent through mossy podocarp forest with a steep gradient from the top of the Panekire descent. Within a few hours, the lakeside Waiopaoa Hut will be reached.
Waiopaoa Hut to Marauiti Hut
The Waiopaoa Stream is followed early, then it’s grassy flats before the track returns to the lakeshore. At the Korokoro Falls Track junction, drop your pack and take the trail to the 22m falls – a scenic and spectacular shimmering sheet of water. Back at the main track, it’s along the outline of the shore, undulating over headlands and around Te Kotoreotaunoa Point to reach Whakaneke Spur and Marauiti Hut.
Marauiti Hut to Hopuruahine Landing
Despite covering the longest distance this section is not difficult (packs will be lighter, too). It’s largely flat with the only notable elevation gain occurring east of Waiharuru Hut, where the track intersects the Puketukutuku Range. It’s a scenic day, and the track sticks mostly by the lake edge until finally reaching Hopuruahine Landing. Here, walkers can meet their pre-booked water taxi back to the beginning or continue 1km to the road for a pre-arranged car shuttle.
- Total Ascent
- Easy / Moderate
- 3-4 days. Onepoto Landing to Panekire Hut, 5hr; To Waiopaoa Hut and campsite, 3-4hr; To Marauiti Hut via Korokoro Falls, 5.5hr; To Waiharuru Hut and campsite, 2hr; To Whanganui Hut, 2.5hr
- Panekire Hut (36 bunks); Waiopaoa Hut (30 bunks); Marauiti Hut (26 bunks); Waiharuru Hut (40 bunks); Whanganui Hut (18 bunks). Multiple campsites
- SH38 from Rotorua