DOC's Deputy Director-General of Operations, Mike Slater says DOC staff are working to confirm that tracks and huts in the worst affected areas are safe to use but it will be some days until we have full information.
"Visitors are advised to stay away from tracks in the Kaikoura and South Marlborough regions until they have been fully assessed. Caution is also urged on some tracks on the West Coast and North Canterbury, but the rest of the country is open and it is business as usual," he says.
"Rockfalls and slips could still occur in the areas closest to the quake zone," Mike Slater says, "especially with ongoing aftershocks and poor weather."
Visitors are urged to check the DOC website or local DOC visitor centre for further information about alerts and issues.
"The priority for DOC staff is assisting with the Civil Defence response to the earthquake in the South Marlborough and Kaikoura areas, so it will take us some time to fully assess the tracks and walkways in that area," Mike Slater says.
Updates will be placed on the Kaikoura earthquake page when further information is available. Report any safety issues to the DOC hotline 0800 DOCHOT (0800 362 468).