Southland

Southland

Takitimu Track - OPEN

Note: Mt Linton Station is closed for lambing 25 September to 5 November inclusive
Northern Start
Junction of SH94 and Princhester Rd
Southern End
Struan Flat Road, Birchwood
Distance
68km
Time
3 to 4 days
Track Standard
Road margin   Footpath   Easy tramping track   Tramping track   Route   Mixed grade  
Potential Hazards
  • Vehicles on road or track Be aware of farm vehicles and/or stock on Mt Linton Station
  • Farming operations
  • River crossings - Never cross flooded rivers
  • Track exposed to sun, wind or cold
  • Few water sources on Mt Linton Station
Description
(North to South)

Takitimu Track

Introductory Notes:

Access - The final 25km of this track is across Mt Linton Station, which is a large and intensive farmed private property. Access across Mt Linton Station has been generously provided by the Station owners. A number of conditions apply to enable walking access to co-exist with farm operations. These conditions including a track closure for lambing from 25 September to 5 November inclusive. The remaining conditions are set out below and it’s imperative that they all be strictly adhered to, both out of respect for the Station owners and to ensure Te Araroa is able to continue to use this critical link. A good portion of the Takitimu Track can still be used during the lambing closure. This is by using the exit/entry track from Aparima Hut to Dunrobin Road.
Note that any walkers found off the marked route over Mt Linton Station shall be trespassed and directed to leave the property via the way they came - this is in response to numerous abuses of our access privilege over the years

Navigation - Many sections are over uneven terrain where there is no real ground trail evident.  Trampers are advised to carry a GPS, maps, compass, usual survival equipment, and to have the skills needed to use everything properly.
 
Shelter - While there are several huts enroute, there is no shelter at the Telford Campsite. Trampers will need to carry and use a tent here.
 

Track notes
 
SH94 to Lower Princhester Hut - 6km / 1.5hr

From the highway the route follows Princhester Rd to DOC’s Lower Princhester Hut (6 bunks). Princhester Rd is a gravelled public road but, also, a working farm access way. Please give way to stock and farm operations and leave gates as you find them.  No dogs are permitted by order arising from an OVIS management program.
 

Lower Princhester Hut to Aparima Hut - 17km / 5-6hr

The track from Lower Princhester Hut is through beech forest and climbs to a saddle between the Bog Burn and Waterloo Burn catchments. It then descends to the northern boundary of Waterloo Station, a Crown Pastoral Lease comprising 3500ha. It is about 4.5km to this point.
Waterloo Station is private property but the lessees allow tramper access down their western boundary to Aparima Hut (12 bunks). The route is poled through tussock land on the bush fringe and marked through the bush clad headlands. Care is required to stay on the permitted track line.
 

Aparima Hut to Lower Wairaki Hut - 13.1km / 6hr
 
Note: The next section to Lower Wairaki Hut is predominantly within the forest. The ground trail is light, or non-existent, so care and concentration is required to travel from marker to marker. This makes the going quite slow.
Cross the Aparima River on the swingbridge near the hut. The track forks here. To the left there is access out to Dunrobin Rd (2hr). Meanwhile Te Araroa follows poles westward (to the right) through marshland on the terrace above the Aparima River’s true right bank. The track reaches the forest edge after 2.5km. Once within the forest the marked track rolls over foot hills to a sign-posted junction with the Wairaki River Track. Turn left here and it’s a about a 45min walk downstream to the Wairaki River ford. Cross the river here, as river levels allow, and climb to the nearby Lower Wairaki Hut (4 bunks).
 
 
Lower Wairaki Hut to Telford Campsite – 8km / 4hr

The sign-posted track departs to the side of the hut and traverses the bush fringe. After about 600m the track crosses a stream then a marker indicates a right hand turn and the beginning of the climb towards the Telford Tops. Carry water from here as it’s the last reliable stream until the campsite.
The climb to the ridge is steady and steepens towards the end. Once on the ridge the track turns left and follows the ridge. After 440m the track emerges on the tops, which afford good views south towards the coast. Marker poles continue down on the main ridge for another 2km. The track then leaves the ridge to the right and descends through grasslands to the Telford Campsite, which has a toilet and water available from the stream.  Trampers should camp here if arriving after midday (see Mt Linton Station conditions of access below). There is no shelter at Telford Campsite.
 
Telford Campsite to Struan Flat Rd – 25km / 8-9hr

Note: this section is entirely over Mt Linton Station, which is privately owned, and is closed for lambing from 25 September to 5 November inclusive each year. 
 
Access is otherwise on an interim and trial basis and upon these additional conditions, which have been set to enable walking access to co-exist with farming operations:
  • Access is only  for tramping parties of 8 or fewer members and during daylight hours;
  • Stick ONLY to the marked track and use stiles where provided (this is a condition of access - if you don't wish to stay on the official route, don't enter the property);
  • Give way to stock and farm operations;
  • No camping, fires, vehicles (including bicycles), horses, dogs or firearms;
  • Carry all rubbish out;
  • There is no vehicle access into Mt Linton Station, beyond the main station office;
  • No commercial activity, including guiding or organized events.
  • Note that any walkers found off the marked route shall be trespassed and directed to leave the property via the way they came - this is in response to numerous abuses of our access privilege over the years

In order to comply with the daylight hours condition trampers should start no later than 10am while daylight saving is in operation (earlier when it is not) and make steady progress towards their destination.
Much of the route is overa working farm so trampers may encounter vehicles and the movement of stock in large numbers. In these situations farm operations have right of way.  Trampers need to step aside and wait quietly until all live stock have passed. Please take direction from farm staff as necessary.
There is no drinking water available en route so trampers should carry sufficient water to last the day.

From the Telford Campsite the route follows poles down the true left side of Telford Burn to a sign-posted crossing. Ford the river here, as river levels allow, and continue on the farm track down the side of the Wairaki River to a marked sharp turn away from the river.
From here you follow well-marked farm track through the hills before dropping back down and sidling above the Wairaki River. The farm track descends onto a large fan down to river level - follow the marked route to the optimum crossing point. In general, the river runs barely above ankle height and will be easily crossed. Do not attempt to cross if it is high, dirty or fast-flowing.
Coming up from the river you will again join a farm track - this is one of the Station's main access-ways so keep a close eye out for stock or farm traffic. Following that track 2.75km and not far around a 90deg bend, a well-marked turn will take you off the major farm track onto a lesser one. continue on that track through paddocks, around forestry plantation and take in the sights and smells of New Zealand's largest farm station.
On occasion the route will leave farm tracks but it is well marked - just look for the capped waratah posts and/or stiles across each fence.
Towards the end of the route cross Orauea Stream on the footbridge a short distance from the roadside trailhead, and follow the marked route out to Struan Flat Rd.
There is parking and cell phone reception here and trampers can phone if they need shuttle transport or accommodation. To ensure availability it’s best to have made arrangements in advance.

Otherwise, it is 7km left on the Ohai-Clifden Highway to Ohai, a small rural town. A further 9km along the Ohai-Clifden highway will take you to Nightcaps where you can resupply at Nightcaps 4 Square.
Note: Map is indicative only
Extra Info

Takitimu Track

Accommodation en route
Princhester Cottage Princhester Rd - P: -27 4885377 (Fiona) - E: f.macdonald@xtra.co.nz - Queen bed plus 3x single beds (incl linen/towels), TV, wifi, fireplace, fully-equipped kitchen and washing machine. Two night minimum stay. $120/night for 2 people and $30/night each extra person.
Lower Princhester Hut - 6 bunks 
Aparima Hut - 12 bunks 
Lower Wairaki Hut - 4 bunks 
Taylor’s Lodge - Ohai - P: 03 225 4244 or 03 225 4041 or 021 307 505 - shuttle transport or accommodation. To ensure availability it’s best to book in advance.
 
Accommodation just beyond the end of this route
Birchwood Station have a cabin available to Te Araroa walkers near the beginning of this route.
For safety reasons, you'll need to call ahead - same day ok but at least a few hours notice - and be met and taken into the hut.
$20pp for the night and $15pp more for a home-cooked meal. Gas cooking facilities, microwave, hot shower, fire, toilet.
Call or text Sarah 027 6995234 or Dean 021 655852.
Requirements
  • Keep to the track
  • Respect private land
  • Open daylight hours only on Mt Linton Station - DO NOT enter (from either end) after midday
  • Leave gates as you find them
  • No dogs
  • No horses
  • No firearms
  • No vehicles
  • No bikes
  • No camping on Mt Linton Station
  • No fires on Mt Linton Station
Environment
  • Take all rubbish with you
  • Use toilets provided at huts
  • Bury toilet waste well away from water
Amenities
(Start)
  • Full range of amenities in Te Anau (33km away)
  • Accommodation Lower Princhester Hut - 6km up Princhester Rd
Amenities
(On Route)
  • No amenities
  • Basic camp site at Telford
  • Accommodation huts
Amenities
(End)
  • No amenities
  • Roadside parking only
Closest Town(s)
Mossburn, Te Anau (notrh end) and Ohai (south end).
Managed by
DOC
Contact
DOC, Invercargill Office
Thanks to
Waterloo and Mt Linton Stations, DOC's Invercargill Staff
Northern Start
Junction of SH94 and Princhester Rd
Southern End
Struan Flat Road, Birchwood
Distance
68km
Time
3 to 4 days
Track Standard
Road margin   Footpath   Easy tramping track   Tramping track   Route   Mixed grade  
Description
(North to South)

Takitimu Track

Introductory Notes:

Access - The final 25km of this track is across Mt Linton Station, which is a large and intensive farmed private property. Access across Mt Linton Station has been generously provided by the Station owners. A number of conditions apply to enable walking access to co-exist with farm operations. These conditions including a track closure for lambing from 25 September to 5 November inclusive. The remaining conditions are set out below and it’s imperative that they all be strictly adhered to, both out of respect for the Station owners and to ensure Te Araroa is able to continue to use this critical link. A good portion of the Takitimu Track can still be used during the lambing closure. This is by using the exit/entry track from Aparima Hut to Dunrobin Road.
Note that any walkers found off the marked route over Mt Linton Station shall be trespassed and directed to leave the property via the way they came - this is in response to numerous abuses of our access privilege over the years

Navigation - Many sections are over uneven terrain where there is no real ground trail evident.  Trampers are advised to carry a GPS, maps, compass, usual survival equipment, and to have the skills needed to use everything properly.
 
Shelter - While there are several huts enroute, there is no shelter at the Telford Campsite. Trampers will need to carry and use a tent here.
 

Track notes
 
SH94 to Lower Princhester Hut - 6km / 1.5hr

From the highway the route follows Princhester Rd to DOC’s Lower Princhester Hut (6 bunks). Princhester Rd is a gravelled public road but, also, a working farm access way. Please give way to stock and farm operations and leave gates as you find them.  No dogs are permitted by order arising from an OVIS management program.
 

Lower Princhester Hut to Aparima Hut - 17km / 5-6hr

The track from Lower Princhester Hut is through beech forest and climbs to a saddle between the Bog Burn and Waterloo Burn catchments. It then descends to the northern boundary of Waterloo Station, a Crown Pastoral Lease comprising 3500ha. It is about 4.5km to this point.
Waterloo Station is private property but the lessees allow tramper access down their western boundary to Aparima Hut (12 bunks). The route is poled through tussock land on the bush fringe and marked through the bush clad headlands. Care is required to stay on the permitted track line.
 

Aparima Hut to Lower Wairaki Hut - 13.1km / 6hr
 
Note: The next section to Lower Wairaki Hut is predominantly within the forest. The ground trail is light, or non-existent, so care and concentration is required to travel from marker to marker. This makes the going quite slow.
Cross the Aparima River on the swingbridge near the hut. The track forks here. To the left there is access out to Dunrobin Rd (2hr). Meanwhile Te Araroa follows poles westward (to the right) through marshland on the terrace above the Aparima River’s true right bank. The track reaches the forest edge after 2.5km. Once within the forest the marked track rolls over foot hills to a sign-posted junction with the Wairaki River Track. Turn left here and it’s a about a 45min walk downstream to the Wairaki River ford. Cross the river here, as river levels allow, and climb to the nearby Lower Wairaki Hut (4 bunks).
 
 
Lower Wairaki Hut to Telford Campsite – 8km / 4hr

The sign-posted track departs to the side of the hut and traverses the bush fringe. After about 600m the track crosses a stream then a marker indicates a right hand turn and the beginning of the climb towards the Telford Tops. Carry water from here as it’s the last reliable stream until the campsite.
The climb to the ridge is steady and steepens towards the end. Once on the ridge the track turns left and follows the ridge. After 440m the track emerges on the tops, which afford good views south towards the coast. Marker poles continue down on the main ridge for another 2km. The track then leaves the ridge to the right and descends through grasslands to the Telford Campsite, which has a toilet and water available from the stream.  Trampers should camp here if arriving after midday (see Mt Linton Station conditions of access below). There is no shelter at Telford Campsite.
 
Telford Campsite to Struan Flat Rd – 25km / 8-9hr

Note: this section is entirely over Mt Linton Station, which is privately owned, and is closed for lambing from 25 September to 5 November inclusive each year. 
 
Access is otherwise on an interim and trial basis and upon these additional conditions, which have been set to enable walking access to co-exist with farming operations:
  • Access is only  for tramping parties of 8 or fewer members and during daylight hours;
  • Stick ONLY to the marked track and use stiles where provided (this is a condition of access - if you don't wish to stay on the official route, don't enter the property);
  • Give way to stock and farm operations;
  • No camping, fires, vehicles (including bicycles), horses, dogs or firearms;
  • Carry all rubbish out;
  • There is no vehicle access into Mt Linton Station, beyond the main station office;
  • No commercial activity, including guiding or organized events.
  • Note that any walkers found off the marked route shall be trespassed and directed to leave the property via the way they came - this is in response to numerous abuses of our access privilege over the years

In order to comply with the daylight hours condition trampers should start no later than 10am while daylight saving is in operation (earlier when it is not) and make steady progress towards their destination.
Much of the route is overa working farm so trampers may encounter vehicles and the movement of stock in large numbers. In these situations farm operations have right of way.  Trampers need to step aside and wait quietly until all live stock have passed. Please take direction from farm staff as necessary.
There is no drinking water available en route so trampers should carry sufficient water to last the day.

From the Telford Campsite the route follows poles down the true left side of Telford Burn to a sign-posted crossing. Ford the river here, as river levels allow, and continue on the farm track down the side of the Wairaki River to a marked sharp turn away from the river.
From here you follow well-marked farm track through the hills before dropping back down and sidling above the Wairaki River. The farm track descends onto a large fan down to river level - follow the marked route to the optimum crossing point. In general, the river runs barely above ankle height and will be easily crossed. Do not attempt to cross if it is high, dirty or fast-flowing.
Coming up from the river you will again join a farm track - this is one of the Station's main access-ways so keep a close eye out for stock or farm traffic. Following that track 2.75km and not far around a 90deg bend, a well-marked turn will take you off the major farm track onto a lesser one. continue on that track through paddocks, around forestry plantation and take in the sights and smells of New Zealand's largest farm station.
On occasion the route will leave farm tracks but it is well marked - just look for the capped waratah posts and/or stiles across each fence.
Towards the end of the route cross Orauea Stream on the footbridge a short distance from the roadside trailhead, and follow the marked route out to Struan Flat Rd.
There is parking and cell phone reception here and trampers can phone if they need shuttle transport or accommodation. To ensure availability it’s best to have made arrangements in advance.

Otherwise, it is 7km left on the Ohai-Clifden Highway to Ohai, a small rural town. A further 9km along the Ohai-Clifden highway will take you to Nightcaps where you can resupply at Nightcaps 4 Square.
Potential Hazards
  • Vehicles on road or track Be aware of farm vehicles and/or stock on Mt Linton Station
  • Farming operations
  • River crossings - Never cross flooded rivers
  • Track exposed to sun, wind or cold
  • Few water sources on Mt Linton Station
Description
(North to South)

Takitimu Track

Introductory Notes:

Access - The final 25km of this track is across Mt Linton Station, which is a large and intensive farmed private property. Access across Mt Linton Station has been generously provided by the Station owners. A number of conditions apply to enable walking access to co-exist with farm operations. These conditions including a track closure for lambing from 25 September to 5 November inclusive. The remaining conditions are set out below and it’s imperative that they all be strictly adhered to, both out of respect for the Station owners and to ensure Te Araroa is able to continue to use this critical link. A good portion of the Takitimu Track can still be used during the lambing closure. This is by using the exit/entry track from Aparima Hut to Dunrobin Road.
Note that any walkers found off the marked route over Mt Linton Station shall be trespassed and directed to leave the property via the way they came - this is in response to numerous abuses of our access privilege over the years

Navigation - Many sections are over uneven terrain where there is no real ground trail evident.  Trampers are advised to carry a GPS, maps, compass, usual survival equipment, and to have the skills needed to use everything properly.
 
Shelter - While there are several huts enroute, there is no shelter at the Telford Campsite. Trampers will need to carry and use a tent here.
 

Track notes
 
SH94 to Lower Princhester Hut - 6km / 1.5hr

From the highway the route follows Princhester Rd to DOC’s Lower Princhester Hut (6 bunks). Princhester Rd is a gravelled public road but, also, a working farm access way. Please give way to stock and farm operations and leave gates as you find them.  No dogs are permitted by order arising from an OVIS management program.
 

Lower Princhester Hut to Aparima Hut - 17km / 5-6hr

The track from Lower Princhester Hut is through beech forest and climbs to a saddle between the Bog Burn and Waterloo Burn catchments. It then descends to the northern boundary of Waterloo Station, a Crown Pastoral Lease comprising 3500ha. It is about 4.5km to this point.
Waterloo Station is private property but the lessees allow tramper access down their western boundary to Aparima Hut (12 bunks). The route is poled through tussock land on the bush fringe and marked through the bush clad headlands. Care is required to stay on the permitted track line.
 

Aparima Hut to Lower Wairaki Hut - 13.1km / 6hr
 
Note: The next section to Lower Wairaki Hut is predominantly within the forest. The ground trail is light, or non-existent, so care and concentration is required to travel from marker to marker. This makes the going quite slow.
Cross the Aparima River on the swingbridge near the hut. The track forks here. To the left there is access out to Dunrobin Rd (2hr). Meanwhile Te Araroa follows poles westward (to the right) through marshland on the terrace above the Aparima River’s true right bank. The track reaches the forest edge after 2.5km. Once within the forest the marked track rolls over foot hills to a sign-posted junction with the Wairaki River Track. Turn left here and it’s a about a 45min walk downstream to the Wairaki River ford. Cross the river here, as river levels allow, and climb to the nearby Lower Wairaki Hut (4 bunks).
 
 
Lower Wairaki Hut to Telford Campsite – 8km / 4hr

The sign-posted track departs to the side of the hut and traverses the bush fringe. After about 600m the track crosses a stream then a marker indicates a right hand turn and the beginning of the climb towards the Telford Tops. Carry water from here as it’s the last reliable stream until the campsite.
The climb to the ridge is steady and steepens towards the end. Once on the ridge the track turns left and follows the ridge. After 440m the track emerges on the tops, which afford good views south towards the coast. Marker poles continue down on the main ridge for another 2km. The track then leaves the ridge to the right and descends through grasslands to the Telford Campsite, which has a toilet and water available from the stream.  Trampers should camp here if arriving after midday (see Mt Linton Station conditions of access below). There is no shelter at Telford Campsite.
 
Telford Campsite to Struan Flat Rd – 25km / 8-9hr

Note: this section is entirely over Mt Linton Station, which is privately owned, and is closed for lambing from 25 September to 5 November inclusive each year. 
 
Access is otherwise on an interim and trial basis and upon these additional conditions, which have been set to enable walking access to co-exist with farming operations:
  • Access is only  for tramping parties of 8 or fewer members and during daylight hours;
  • Stick ONLY to the marked track and use stiles where provided (this is a condition of access - if you don't wish to stay on the official route, don't enter the property);
  • Give way to stock and farm operations;
  • No camping, fires, vehicles (including bicycles), horses, dogs or firearms;
  • Carry all rubbish out;
  • There is no vehicle access into Mt Linton Station, beyond the main station office;
  • No commercial activity, including guiding or organized events.
  • Note that any walkers found off the marked route shall be trespassed and directed to leave the property via the way they came - this is in response to numerous abuses of our access privilege over the years

In order to comply with the daylight hours condition trampers should start no later than 10am while daylight saving is in operation (earlier when it is not) and make steady progress towards their destination.
Much of the route is overa working farm so trampers may encounter vehicles and the movement of stock in large numbers. In these situations farm operations have right of way.  Trampers need to step aside and wait quietly until all live stock have passed. Please take direction from farm staff as necessary.
There is no drinking water available en route so trampers should carry sufficient water to last the day.

From the Telford Campsite the route follows poles down the true left side of Telford Burn to a sign-posted crossing. Ford the river here, as river levels allow, and continue on the farm track down the side of the Wairaki River to a marked sharp turn away from the river.
From here you follow well-marked farm track through the hills before dropping back down and sidling above the Wairaki River. The farm track descends onto a large fan down to river level - follow the marked route to the optimum crossing point. In general, the river runs barely above ankle height and will be easily crossed. Do not attempt to cross if it is high, dirty or fast-flowing.
Coming up from the river you will again join a farm track - this is one of the Station's main access-ways so keep a close eye out for stock or farm traffic. Following that track 2.75km and not far around a 90deg bend, a well-marked turn will take you off the major farm track onto a lesser one. continue on that track through paddocks, around forestry plantation and take in the sights and smells of New Zealand's largest farm station.
On occasion the route will leave farm tracks but it is well marked - just look for the capped waratah posts and/or stiles across each fence.
Towards the end of the route cross Orauea Stream on the footbridge a short distance from the roadside trailhead, and follow the marked route out to Struan Flat Rd.
There is parking and cell phone reception here and trampers can phone if they need shuttle transport or accommodation. To ensure availability it’s best to have made arrangements in advance.

Otherwise, it is 7km left on the Ohai-Clifden Highway to Ohai, a small rural town. A further 9km along the Ohai-Clifden highway will take you to Nightcaps where you can resupply at Nightcaps 4 Square.
Note: Map is indicative only
Extra Info

Takitimu Track

Accommodation en route
Princhester Cottage Princhester Rd - P: -27 4885377 (Fiona) - E: f.macdonald@xtra.co.nz - Queen bed plus 3x single beds (incl linen/towels), TV, wifi, fireplace, fully-equipped kitchen and washing machine. Two night minimum stay. $120/night for 2 people and $30/night each extra person.
Lower Princhester Hut - 6 bunks 
Aparima Hut - 12 bunks 
Lower Wairaki Hut - 4 bunks 
Taylor’s Lodge - Ohai - P: 03 225 4244 or 03 225 4041 or 021 307 505 - shuttle transport or accommodation. To ensure availability it’s best to book in advance.
 
Accommodation just beyond the end of this route
Birchwood Station have a cabin available to Te Araroa walkers near the beginning of this route.
For safety reasons, you'll need to call ahead - same day ok but at least a few hours notice - and be met and taken into the hut.
$20pp for the night and $15pp more for a home-cooked meal. Gas cooking facilities, microwave, hot shower, fire, toilet.
Call or text Sarah 027 6995234 or Dean 021 655852.
Requirements
  • Keep to the track
  • Respect private land
  • Open daylight hours only on Mt Linton Station - DO NOT enter (from either end) after midday
  • Leave gates as you find them
  • No dogs
  • No horses
  • No firearms
  • No vehicles
  • No bikes
  • No camping on Mt Linton Station
  • No fires on Mt Linton Station
Environment
  • Take all rubbish with you
  • Use toilets provided at huts
  • Bury toilet waste well away from water
Amenities
(Start)
  • Full range of amenities in Te Anau (33km away)
  • Accommodation Lower Princhester Hut - 6km up Princhester Rd
Amenities
(On Route)
  • No amenities
  • Basic camp site at Telford
  • Accommodation huts
Amenities
(End)
  • No amenities
  • Roadside parking only
Closest Town(s)
Mossburn, Te Anau (notrh end) and Ohai (south end).
Managed by
DOC
Contact
DOC, Invercargill Office
Thanks to
Waterloo and Mt Linton Stations, DOC's Invercargill Staff