NELSON TRAILS

Takaka Hill Walkway

Takaka Hill Walkway is a loop walk at the top of Takaka Hill. The walkway passes through fascinating karst landscape, with intriguing marble rock formations, sub-alpine scrub and beech forest, and magnificent views of Kahurangi National Park and Golden Bay. The walkway is public, though it is located on private land owned by the Harwood family. This land was protected with three QEII Open Space Covenants in 1985, in recognition of the outstanding karst landscape and unusual geology. The covenant land borders Kahurangi National Park to the south and east. The walkway is maintained by the QEII National Trust and volunteers.

Details
Length 3 km for half loop;   5.1 km for full loop
Time Required 1-2 hr for half loop;   2-3 hr for full loop
Trail Type Gravel road/Tramping track
Physical Difficulty Moderate   
Uses Walking only
Direction Either
Max Elevation 950 m
Amenities There are no toilets or drinking water sources on the walkway

Connections

Takaka Hill Walkway does not connect to any other tracks.

TAKAKA HILL Current Conditions

Access

  1 hr from Nelson | 30 min from Takaka

 

Takaka Hill Walkway is located at the top of Takaka Hill on State Highway 60, 53 km from Richmond and 38 km from Takaka. The walkway has its own car park on the left side of the road (if you’re coming from Nelson), which is signposted. Allow 1 hour to get to the walkway if you’re coming from Nelson, or 30 min if you’re coming from Takaka

Description

The beginning of the walkway follows a 4WD road. The road heads to the left, but continue to the right along the walkway, which takes a more direct route uphill. After 600 m the walkway rejoins the 4WD and curves around to the west to overlook Takaka Valley. Take a short deviation up the road to the radio tower, situated atop a knob at 950 m elevation. Here you will enjoy magnificent views of the upper Takaka Valley, Golden Bay and the Tasman Mountains in Kahurangi National Park.

 

The walkway continues down around the high point. You will need to take your time as the track clambers over coarse marble through dense scrub and then enters a section of beech forest. You will reach a link track that heads back to the 4WD road and which you can take to get back to the car park. Otherwise continue along the walkway, as it heads east through karst, scrub and beech forest, and loops back to the 4WD road after 2 km.

 

The walkway is well signposted the whole way around. The track does not allow for fast travel. Pay attention to where you place your feet, as the oddly-shaped rock formations and uneven track can easily cause falls and twisted ankles.

Safety

Do not venture off the track. Sometimes referred to as ‘Marble Mountain’, Takaka Hill is dotted with numerous sinkholes, many of which are obscured by vegetation and rocks. Some of these are extremely deep, and though there are some warning signs in place, do not rely solely on these for your safety. The walkway is entirely above 800 m elevation and the higher section around the radio mast is very exposed, so be sure to bring appropriate warm clothing as the weather may turn unexpectedly. Make sure you wear sturdy outdoor footwear as the walkway is rough and uneven. There are no water sources on the walkway, so bring plenty of your own.

Takaka Hill Walkway

Takaka Hill Walkway is a loop walk at the top of Takaka Hill. The walkway passes through fascinating karst landscape, with intriguing marble rock formations, sub-alpine scrub and beech forest, and magnificent views of Kahurangi National Park and Golden Bay. The walkway is public, though it is located on private land owned by the Harwood family. This land was protected with three QEII Open Space Covenants in 1985, in recognition of the outstanding karst landscape and unusual geology. The covenant land borders Kahurangi National Park to the south and east. The walkway is maintained by the QEII National Trust and volunteers.

Details
Length 3 km for half loop;   5.1 km for full loop
Time Required 1-2 hr for half loop;   2-3 hr for full loop
Trail Type Gravel road/Tramping track
Physical Difficulty Moderate   
Uses Walking only
Direction Either
Max Elevation 950 m
Amenities There are no toilets or drinking water sources on the walkway
Access

  1 hr from Nelson | 30 min from Takaka

 

Takaka Hill Walkway is located at the top of Takaka Hill on State Highway 60, 53 km from Richmond and 38 km from Takaka. The walkway has its own car park on the left side of the road, which is signposted. Allow 1 hour to get to the walkway if coming from Nelson.

Description

The beginning of the walkway follows a 4WD road. The road heads to the left, but continue to the right along the walkway, which takes a more direct route uphill. After 600 m the walkway rejoins the 4WD and curves around to the west to overlook Takaka Valley. Take a short deviation up the road to the radio tower, situated atop a knob at 950 m elevation. Here you will enjoy magnificent views of the upper Takaka Valley, Golden Bay and the Tasman Mountains in Kahurangi National Park.

 

The walkway continues down around the high point. You will need to take your time as the track clambers over coarse marble through dense scrub and then enters a section of beech forest. You will reach a link track that heads back to the 4WD road and which you can take to get back to the car park. Otherwise continue along the walkway, as it heads east through karst, scrub and beech forest, and loops back to the 4WD road after 2 km.

 

The walkway is well signposted the whole way around. The track does not allow for fast travel. Pay attention to where you place your feet, as the oddly-shaped rock formations and uneven track can easily cause falls and twisted ankles.

Safety

Do not venture off the track. Sometimes referred to as ‘Marble Mountain’, Takaka Hill is dotted with numerous sinkholes, many of which are obscured by vegetation and rocks. Some of these are extremely deep, and though there are some warning signs in place, do not rely solely on these for your safety. The walkway is entirely above 800 m elevation and the higher section around the radio mast is very exposed, so be sure to bring appropriate warm clothing as the weather may turn unexpectedly. Make sure you wear sturdy outdoor footwear as the walkway is rough and uneven. There are no water sources on the walkway, so bring plenty of your own.

Connections

Takaka Hill Walkway does not connect to any other tracks.

Updated 23 January 2019