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McGregor Bivouac, Tararua Forest Park

Tiny two-bunk McGregor Bivouac. Photo: Jess Clark
12.8km to biv
Total Ascent
8hr to McGregor Bivouac
McGregor Bivouac (free, two hunks), Jumbo Hut ($15, 20 bunks), Atiwhakatu Hut ($5, 26 bunks)
From the end of Mt Holdsworth Road
BP33, BP34
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McGregor Bivouac, Tararua Forest Park (gpx, yo 39 KB)
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There are many ways to get to McGregor Bivouac, a nice stopping point on a number of different accessible routes in the Tararuas and which also provides some great tops-travel and panoramic views.

The route described here is one of the less adventurous ways to reach the biv, but is perfect for inclement weather.

A pleasant three-hour walk leads past Atiwhakatu Hut, and up Raingauge Spur to Jumbo Hut. The track to Atiwhakatu is particularly well maintained, and is also in good condition up to Jumbo.

From Jumbo Hut, climb to Jumbo (1405m) and walk the ridge to Angle Knob (1510m). There is a light track along this ridge as it is a popular side trip on the Holdsworth Jumbo Circuit.

In poor weather, map and compass will be necessary from Angle Knob to be sure you’re taking the spur in the right direction for McGregor Biv. Heading northwards, the ridge flattens out, and a number of rocky outcrops give the area a moonscape-feel.

Not far along this ridge is a wooden sign pointing towards McGregor Biv. Follow a lightly marked track, and at the bush line, the bright orange biv appears. The biv is very small and a little damp and mouldy, but it has a great outdoor space with good views, a fire area, plenty of seating.

It’s an easy walk back to Jumbo Hut, and retracing your steps will bring you back to the road end in a few hours.