The Department of Conservation would like to inform the community that the Lookout Track, which starts from the State Highway 1 Bridge Turangi, will be temporarily closed from this week for approximately one month, so that the aged pine trees can be felled and removed from the steep river banks. The community will later be involved in replanting the area in native vegetation.
The pine trees are over mature and the Department of Conservation are removing the risk of the aged trees falling into the river. The trees falling would pose an immediate risk to anglers fishing in the pools below. If the trees were left to fall, logs and loose soil being washed down river could potentially threaten downstream values, recreational activities and damage to State Highway infrastructure.
The Department of Conservation plans to restore most of the area that will be logged with native trees and shrubs. The community will be invited to partake in the plantings which will return the conservation area to a more natural state.
The Lookout track runs through the Tongariro River No. 2 Scenic Reserve above the Tongariro River immediately south of the State Highway 1 road bridge, through to the Major Jones Bridge.