View back to the Pinnacles Hut
Image: Kathrin Marks | Creative Commons
There are a number of tramping tracks in the Valley to choose from.
Time: 2 hr one way
This track starts near the Kauaeranga Visitor Centre after crossing the Kauaeranga River (unbridged). Follow the markers across private farmland to the forest park boundary. Once in the forest, the track climbs up the western side of the valley to the Kopu-Hikuai Road. The Piraunui Valley contains forested river flats, stands of regenerating kauri and unusual rock formations.
Time: 1 hr one way
Just past the Totara Flat Campsite, cross the Kauaeranga River (there is no bridge) and follow Tarawaere Stream, crossing it many times, to the remains of a rafter flume dam (on which the model dam near the Visitor Centre is based). A track above the dam connects with the Billygoat walking track.
Time: 4 hr
No dogs permitted
Beyond Tarawaere Dam the track follows an old packhorse trail and climbs to a ridge at 500 metres. This track is steep in places and can be slippery in wet conditions. It joins the Billygoat walking track near the remains of the Long Trestle. Follow the track back past the short trestles to the Kauaeranga River to complete a circuit.
Time: 3 hr one way
From the car park, go past the Webb Creek junction following the river. Cross the river on the suspension bridge and then climb steeply to the Moss Creek campsite.
Time: 6 hr one way
No dogs permitted
The track descends steadily for about an hour to a river crossing (no bridge), then climbs steeply through scrubland. After crossing a side stream the track drops steadily through scrubland towards Rangihau Road. There is a further 3-4 hours of walking along a rough 4WD road to Coroglen unless arrangements have been made for a vehicle pick up.
More extensive tramping from the Kauaeranga Valley through to Broken Hills is possible but should be attempted by experienced trampers only. For information on this track contact the Kauaeranga Visitor Centre.
The Kauaeranga Valley is east of Thames on the Coromandel Peninsula.
Before you go into the outdoors, tell someone your plans and leave a date to raise the alarm if you haven't returned. To do this, use the New Zealand Outdoors Intentions process on the AdventureSmart website. It is endorsed by New Zealand's search and rescue agencies and provides three simple options to tell someone you trust the details about your trip.