I highly recommend the Harataonga Coastal Walk. An easy grade four hour walk from Aotea Road to Harataonga Beach and camp site. There are plenty scenic viewpoints along the historic coastal track, inviting you to sit down and enjoy the magnificent views. Continue reading Pictures of the Week 30 – Harataonga Coastal Walk
There are superb hiking and tramping tracks all over Great Barrier Island and I intend to experience them all first hand and to post reviews here on BENIsLAND.co.nz. You certainly don’t have to leave the Tryphena vicinity if you are looking for rewarding hiking adventures, be it coastal or inland. Last Sunday we went for a hike and scout, and discovered Dolphin and Ross Bays. Access is via Cape Barrier Road and if you miss the following sign you’re probably driving too fast. It is on the right hand side going south and approximatively 5 km from the beginning of Cape Barrier Road.
As I mentioned in the previous post, spending a night at the D.O.C. Mt Heale Hut on Mount Hobson is a great idea. The hut has toilet, water, bunk bed and gas facilities and you’ll appreciate the beautiful views.
Let me begin with the key details for this track before writing about my own experience. The start of Kaiaraara Track forks off Forest Road (on the Port FitzRoy side, follow Aotea Road until the end. There is a parking area.) and it will take you about 3-4 hours to reach the summit of Hirakimata. The track rises steadily with a large portion of it climbing up wooden staircases that have been built to preserve the ecosystem. Whit an average level of fitness you can hike up and down the track in half a day carrying a day pack, but it might be a better idea to spend a night at Mount Heale Hut (D.O.C. Mt Heale Hut). An ideal spot to begin your adventure would be the Kaiaraara Hut (D.O.C. Kaiaraara Hut). You will experience indigenous and exotic forest, maybe spot or at least hear (endangered) fauna, cross several hanging bridges, observe historic kauri dams and be rewarded with a beautiful and extensive overview of the Hauraki Gulf and Great Barrier Island. In addition, another rewarding factor, you will physically feel your leg muscles and remember the somewhat challenging steady climb. Add South Fork Track to your itinerary and you’ll experience a beautiful loop tramping track rated amongst the highest in New Zealand.