Kahikatea tree in Pirongia Forest Park
Image: Derek Bao | ©
12 km return via same track
From the Kaniwhaniwha car park, follow the Nikau Walk to the Bell Track. Past the Kaniwhaniwha Caves the track becomes undulating, with some uneven ground and muddy sections along Blue Bull Stream up to the swingbridge. Don't cross the swingbridge but continue upstream for 10 minutes beyond the bridge to the kahikatea tree with its distinctive buttressed trunk. At 66.5 m, this is the tallest recorded native tree in New Zealand.
The Bell Track continues to the summit across the swingbridge. See Pirongia summit via Bell & Tahuanui Tracks.
Access this track from from Limeworks Loop Road.
From Hamilton take SH23 to Whatawhata. Turn left onto Te Pahu Road after the bridge over the Waipa River. Limeworks Loop Road is about 10.6 km on the right.
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.