The long awaited Turere Lodge - the latest addition to comfort tramping near Wellington in the Rimutaka Forest Park - has been officially opened.
Turere Lodge, a new 32-bunk Department of Conservation (DOC) facility, has four bunk rooms, large communal cooking/gathering facilities and a deck that takes in the stunning views of the Orongorongo Valley.
“Turere Lodge will offer great opportunities for school and sports groups, organised clubs, tramping clubs and large family and business groups to have a comfortable experience within this stunning forest park,” says DOC Kapiti Wellington Area manager Rob Stone.
Just a short drive from Wellington, the lodge is an easy 2.5 hour walk on a popular day walker track. It is easily accessible from the Catchpool Valley and doesn’t require a river crossing to reach. It is made from sustainable materials and is fully insulated, offering bright living spaces that can be heated efficiently in winter.
Being closely located to major urban centres, the park offers an introduction to nature and tramping with its network of huts, tracks and family friendly facilities that cater to all levels.
Over 200 people attended an opening on the weekend, enjoying the sun and scenery and taking the opportunity for a first look through the new lodge.
Greytown scouts who stayed in the lodge overnight, sat and listened at night to a kiwi calling nearby.
“This is the first time many of us have ever heard a kiwi in the wild, the excitement that ran through us all listening was awesome. Some of our first timers are now hooked to how wonderful the New Zealand bush and its native flora and fauna can be,” said Greytown Scout leader Kathy Schofield.
Including the lodge, there are six bookable huts in the park. All can be booked for exclusive hire (meaning you don’t have to share if you don’t want to). They are equipped with mattresses, cooking facilities and utensils, crockery and some even offer the comfort of hot showers and flush toilets.