Kohaihai Campsite

Image: Laura Honey | DOC


16 December 2019 - 1 May 2020: Volunteer as a campsite host and enjoy the beautiful nīkau forest at this campsite on the Kohaihai River mouth.


Kohaihai Campsite is a popular place to stay, particularly for trampers finishing the Heaphy Track and for keen white baiters. 

There are short, day or overnight walks from the campsite as well as swimming opportunities in the river.


The Kohaihai Camp host roster runs from 16 December 2019 to 1 May 2020.

We would prefer volunteers to be onsite for two months at a time, however we understand the need to be flexible.


A campsite host holds a very high public profile position within DOC. As well as being the sole representative of the department for hundreds of visitors, they are also our eyes and ears in the field.

The primary function of the camp host in this frontline position is to add to the visitors' positive experiences. This is accomplished in a number of ways such as; keeping the campsite and toilets clean and tidy, carrying out some minor campsite maintenance, answering questions about local attractions and making conversation with the visitors while representing the department in a positive way. The role also involves camp fee collection and compliance.


Kohaihai Campsite is situated 15 km north of Karamea at the end of Council Road and the start of the Heaphy Track at the Kohaihai River mouth. It is a sheltered site surrounded by native west coast bush. 

The campsite is rated as a 'standard' DOC campsite and has 50 non-powered tent sites. Standard campsites have a limited range of facilities and services. Kohaihai Campsite has flush toilets, drinking water from a tap, a BBQ, a phone on site, a picnic area and wheelchair access with assistance.


  • Helping visitors to enjoy their stay
  • Collecting camp fees and carrying out fee compliance
  • Providing general information to campers including information about the Heaphy Track
  • Cleaning the toilet blocks and shelter block
  • Rubbish collection
  • Minor campsite maintenance
  • Passing on maintenance requirements to DOC staff

What to expect

Accommodation: A campsite free of charge. This will be a non-powered site.

Training: Full training and induction will be provided.

Skills and experience required:

  • Fit and healthy
  • Honest and reliable
  • Have a practical outlook and able to carry out duties on your own
  • Enjoy working with people and able to relate to a range of people in a friendly manner
  • Culturally sensitive
  • Conversant in English
  • Money handling skills preferable
  • First aid certificate preferable
  • Compliant with DOC Health and Safety Policy

Work environment:

Kohaihai campsite is 15 km from the small town of Karamea (which has a 4 Square only) and 110 km from Westport. It is a standard campsite with no electricity.

The campsite does have a public telephone where local calls can be made to Karamea and Westport only. There is limited Vodafone and Spark cell phone coverage at the campsite and at various spots along the coastline.


  • Necessary equipment and personal protective clothing will be provided by DOC to carry out the camp host tasks.

What to bring

  • Caravan or campervan
  • Cooking equipment and utensils
  • Enough food for the duration of your stay (note that there is a four square in Karamea for food)
  • Wet weather gear
  • Warm clothing
  • Lots of insect repellent
  • Sun protection
  • Walking shoes/boots, shoes for around camp
  • Torch (head torch and hand torch would be wise) with spare batteries
  • Personal medication/toiletries including anti-histamines
  • Volunteers must have their own vehicle

Optional gear:

  • Water purification tablets
  • Day bag/ drink bottle for day walks
  • Camera
  • Swimsuit
  • Fishing gear
  • Camping chairs and table

How to apply

To apply for a position fill out the online application form.


Pete Graham
Email: pegraham@doc.govt.nz

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