Otaki Forks Road Closed

Friday 25/12/2015

After hearing about the closure of the road to Otaki Forks we went for a drive. To see for ourselves the state of the road to Otaki Forks, and it is not good, there is a bit of a concrete in the way. The road looks ok at the moment, just a few rocks here and there. After the next rain or while it is raining it will be interesting.
Road Closed
Please do not walk through...
This bits ok
Looking worse
The unsafe bit
Looking back from the Otaki Forks side
Location of closure

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Interesting that the older version of the topo shows the slip and the newer version dosn't. Here is the older version from my android.
AlpineQuest topo

Kime Hut

Saturday 28/11/2015
After a day of house cleaning I did decide to head off to Otaki Forks and wander in to Kime for the night only because Bill texted me that just him and Jane where at the hut. No crowds.

Left my car at Otaki Forks approx 1930 hours and got to Field hut at 2100 hours; torched up from Field as was dark and heading into minor clag.

Sunday 29/11/2015
Up to Hector Hut in the morning with Bill for his ingress game thing with aliens and portals and all sorts of non-existent mumbo jumbo.
Hector Memorial, flag Remanent, and Bill
Back out to Otaki Forks ...
Leaving Kime in the Klag
Bill, Sign, and Jane
North along to Table Top
Map of Place

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Trip Times
Saturday 28/11/2015
1923 Left Otaki Forks
2102 Field Hut
2135 Sign to Penn Creek
2221 Bridge Peak, first sign
2234 Kime Hut
Sunday 29/11/2015
0934 Left Kime Hut
1108 At Field Hut
1256 At car park Otaki Forks

NOTE: No sign of any bibles.

Sheridan Creek

Sunday 22/11/2015

Day trip with Tariga to go visit the log hauler up Sheridan Creek on our way to my Dads birthday.
Our Feet Stuff
Parked at the end of the Otaki Gorge Road and followed the Waiotauru track to just passed Sheridan creek.
Tariga heading off
Waiotauru river bed
A lot of rain lately. We had no trouble crossing the Waiotauru river and heading off up Sheridan Creek. We went up on the true left, not knowing there was a bit of an OT track on the true right.
Tariga in river bed
Tariga and buttercups
 In and out of the river and getting to a deeper place we discovered the track on the true right, time was short and the water was deep so we left it for another day. One thats hot with low water levels.
Crossing opposite the Otaki Forks campsite was a bit trickier as the river was narrower and the current was more pushy.


DOC info - Otaki Forks Area

Waitewaewae and Rain and no Island Forks

Been into YTYY a lot lately as have found a large area to explore.

Friday 20/11/2015
Friday afternoon Paul and I headed off to Otaki Forks with wet weather forecast, hoping that it would not be too wet.
Side stream
Got into Waitewaewae hut via the new track and discarded most stuff from my pack and headed off to see if I could get to Island Forks. Followed an old track on the true right just past the swing bridge, but got slowed down clambering thru bush as it got dark. So gave up and headed back to Waitewaewae.
Dirty Brown River
Had the fire going by the time Paul arrived.

Saturday 21/11/2015

Some sleep in the next day as it rained all night. Paul headed off out and I had another go at getting to Island forks this time crossing the swing and heading up the true left, another old track. Where the river was widest tried to cross. Waist deep water and very swift, still another 10 meters to go and it was getting deeper. So again failed to get to Island Forks.

As  I headed out I meet a couple of trampers and they told me that Paul had taken the old track. Caught up with Paul before he got out of the creek and we both decided the old track has more of a green forest feel and far more enjoyable to walk than the new sidle greasy one.
Boiler and Paul
Fungi on the slip after the boiler, still not too bad to go up and over.

Trip Times
Friday 20/11/2015
1533 Left the car at Otaki Forks
1750 Plateau
1859 Hut
Saturday 21/11/2015
1239 Left hut
1350 Plateau
1602 At the car

The river flow for the weekend, getting high.
Otaki River at Pukehinau Flow for the weekend

YTYY with Bill and Jane

Left Wellington late on the Friday evening. Did some hours of fix up of my Mum and Dads computer after it got the faulty Microsoft security update KB-3097877 installed and left their computer unusable. That was a real cock up there Mr and Mrs Microsoft. Reason why I live in Mac Book land.

Got to Otaki Forks and wandered in to Parawai Lodge for the night, as aim to meet Bill and Jane at nine in the morning for our walk into Waitewaewae and maybe up to Anderson Memorial hut.

Saturday 14/11/2015
Had my breakfast in the warm sun. Meet Bill and Jane at the picnic area and drove our cars to the over night car park, then headed off into YTYY.
Jane and Bill well dressed and packed
 We did have a discussion and the water way won out, was not the warmest.
Bill and Jane crossing towards the hut
Got to Waitewaewae, had lunch and dropped off most of our stuff before heading up to Shoulder Knob. Lost the blue sky and by the time we got out of the bush it was windy and claggy and no views.

Sunday 15/11/2015
Rain all night. Bed in breakfast then out and off into the rain.
YTYY hut with rain
Was a warm walk out, bit more slipping than on the way in and we did take the high water track. The following is the Sunday river rise.
Otaki River at Pukehinau Flow for the weekend

Aorangi Crossing

The October Labour weekend is best to use for something other than the often visited Tararua's, so Aorangi crossing with the added bonus of some hut bagging it was. With a long walk back to the car round the coast, originally planned to walk the beach, but on the day I discovered it was way too slow. So did the road instead, and got to see dozer action.

The huts visited in order:
  • Washpool Hut
  • Pararaki Hut - stayed the night here
  • Kawakawa Hut
  • Mangatoe Hut
Didn't leave on the Friday night which was best as the start of the walk would not have been easy in the dark. And it didn't take three days.

Saturday 24/10/2015
Drove off Saturday morning from Wellington and cruised slowly in the Toyota Sprinter to Pinnacles car park. Stopped at some spot where the view wandered off into the sea with fluffy clouds and some blue. Almost like being on holiday rather than doing some out of office weekend tramping trip.
Palliser Bay from the side of the road
Left my car unlocked accidentally as I'd gone back for a USB cable. No harm.
Toyota Sprinter and pack
Headed off from the car park on a nice sunny day to the look out. Which does have some good views of the formations.
Putangirua Pinnacles
Some k's to go so five minutes of view, and the platform stayed put, no Cave Creek here. Off back onto the track that connected to the four wheel stuff and gorse time.
Gorse track time
Wandering hard and lost the track so followed an old fence line on the ridge untill the big OT.
4WD ends at big OT
Now it was real tramping time on a track with lots of nice bush and the occasional native nettle. Got some clear spots with views.
Looking North
Looking South
Looking NW
Heading down and thru areas of young sparse trees, some parts of this track are jogging material.
Open forest
And then on up again into an area with large old trees. Much drier under foot than the Tararua's. More like the Northen forests in the South Island.
Hammered bark
Got to Washpool hut which is my favorite one of the weekends walk. Had a relaxing meal and a few cups of tea. Will be coming back here.
Washpool Hut
Washpool Hut interior
The hut book is not full and starts in 2007, so its one of those huts where not many come visit and or many that do don't document there stay.
Hut book starts 2007
Left Washpool hut just on six pm and wanted to get to Pararaki hut before dark, so full speed up the hill scaring a few pigs on the way. 3 hours in the tree.
3 hours
Got to Pararaki hut with plenty of light.
Pararaki Hut
Inside the hut there was a shelf of rat chewed food and rat shit every where, spent half an hour sweeping and cleaning. Outside as the sun was going down and the moon was rising I spotted a bat flying away from the trees, no photo of bat, however this was the chunk of tree and sky where it was.
Bat zone
After cleaning up the rat shit and collecting wood I fried my toes before I slept.
fire and feet
Sunday 25/10/2015
Amazing bird song woke me early and I after food and hut tidy I was on my way by eight a.m.
Pararaki Hut 1966
Off across Pararaki stream and uphill before some sidling past an old enclosure. Interesting sign this, as the trees are back however the undergrowth is trashed with the pig rooting in places.
NZ Forest Service Enclosure
Close up of the sign put here in 1959, when the plants where either not existing or up to a height of two inches.
Close up of sign from NZFS 1959
Check out page 105 as there is a picture of the above exclosure being built.
A lot more Urtica ferox in this stretch of the walk.
Urtica ferox
I like the older trees in this part of the forest, and saw a wee bit of fungi later on.
Tree and green
Ear type fungi
Had two pigs snuffling and rooting there way down the hill and wander past me, they raced off when I moved to get my camera out. The ridge down to the junction is one of the nicest bits of the track, then its an easy pasture like walk to Kawakawa hut. Stopped at Kawakawa hut as it was time for food and a cup of coffee and a cleanup of the Seek Freedom detritus.
Kawakawa Hut
Left Kawakawa hut and after a few hundred easy going meters it was into a creek for the next hour, not enough water to get wet feet.
Stream track
Across a saddle with a view down the valley towards the coast.
View looking down valley toward Palliser Road
Then down into Mangatoetoe stream all the way to Mangatoetoe hut.
Mangatoetoe Hut
Lunch time here and another bit of the Seek Freedom detritus, in fact it had only been left that day.
Interior of Mangatoetoe Hut
A short stay
The walk from here was cow paddock material all the way down until out of the river. Then it was up onto the bridge for road walk time.
Mangatoetoe Stream
Heading to the coast road
The start of the road walk along Cape Palliser road is gravel, and a bit dusty as cars drive past. Much colorful flowers.
Cape Palliser Road gravel bit
Got to Ngawi and its a bit of a dozer action place, where dozers go to retire before becoming scrap.
Dozer Zone
Mind you some looked a bit like scrap and others like something out of a tin of paint.
The green one
Looking North along the coast after Ngawi.
Looking North
Kawakawa Bridge
Road between Kawakawa and Pararaki bridges
Pararaki Bridge
More road between bridges
Washpool Bridge

Road after Washpool Bridge
Sea view
Putangirua Bridge
Finally back at the Pinnacles where the previous day I had parked my car, that was four hours of 23 kilometers of road walking just too do a big loop walk. Next time I will walk back thru the forests.
Pinnacles Reserve
Trip Times
1210 Left Pinnacles car park
1232 At the lookout
1608 Washpool hut
1758 Left Washpool hut
1938 Pararaki hut
0800 Left Pararaki Hut
0941 At the forks
0956 At Kawakawa Hut
1033 Left Kawakawa Hut
1236 Mangatoetoe Hut
1320 Left Mangatoetoe hut
1410 On the road, beach was a failure
1547 Kawakawa Bridge
1614 Praraki Bridge
1719 Washpool bridge
1816 Putarangi bridge
1820 Back at the car

Map of Area
NZTopo50 BQ33 and BR33 are required.