Walk KapitiWith Penny Redward 24th May 2010
Thompson from Waitohu Rd Otaki. If you feel like a bit of a challenge and knocking off one of the local peaks here is a walk that is all but completely unmarked, it involves coping with typical Tararua mud, avoiding sneaky vines of vicious bush lawyer (I’ve often wondered where that name came from) and sidling around fallen trees. Still keen? Well the good news is that it’s not that difficult and the views are great when you get there. Allow 4 to 5 hours plus lunch break and make sure you have the relevant topo map, GPS or compass.
While the walk itself is on DOC managed land the access is through private property so please ring the friendly farmer: David Moore on 06 364-8937 before setting out.
David is generally happy to allow trampers through and will advise you where to park – however understandably lambing time (August, September and October) is off limits.
Turn into Waitohu Road, (2nd road north of Otaki) continue past Ringawahti Rd, round the left hand bend then right into the Quarry entrance. After parking your car walk past the quarry buildings, veer right along the farm access track crossing two bridges before veering right again on to an old road. Follow this road for approximately ten minutes then take the left hand road through a Taranaki gate for 15 to 20 minutes. The trees become thicker and there are some large windfalls around.
Keep an eye out for some pink ribbon on uphill side just past a large macrocarpa windfall – turn hard left and clamber up the hill over the fallen trees and hunt for the track. Now you are on your own so the map and compass might be very handy.
After a good two hours of some very pleasant bush walking you should come across six or more fallen beech trees that are quite spectacular.
The root system now at right angles to the ground, reveal how little purchase they have on the soil. Once one falls, if it doesn’t already take others with it, it creates a gap in the wind break and others soon join in.
Having negotiated the fallen beeches the top is just a minute or two further on; a wonderful open area to relax, enjoy lunch and take in the views of the Horowhenua Coast, Kapiti Island and on a clear day both Taranaki and Ruapehu in the distance.
Have a great day but please don’t get lost, if you feel you have strayed off the track you probably have. Tell someone where you are going and when you expect to be home.