Mangahao Makahika Track

Image: Evan Greensides | Creative Commons


The Mangahao Makahika Track connects Burtton's Track, which lies between Palmerston North and Shannon, with the Arapaepae Lookout Trail near Levin.

Track overview

15 km one way

Walking and tramping

6 - 7 hrs going south, 7- 8 hrs going north Advanced: Tramping track

Dog access

Dogs on a leash only

About this track


The track can be walked from either direction but is easiest from the Mangahao roadend.

Getting there

Starting from Shannon follow Mangahao Road past Mangaore village and the Mangahao power station. Follow the narrow and winding road for 6 km to the saddle and a 1 km descent to the Tokomaru Valley road junction on left which leads to the start of Burtton's track. From the junction drive a further 2.4 km, past the Arapeti (Tokomaru #3) dam. 400 m past the Tararua Forest Park sign is a small parking area. This is the start of the track.

Starting from Levin at the end of Queen Street East follow Gladstone Road for 8 km passing the Levin water treatment works and the Gladstone Road Reserve. On the right is Poads Road crossing the Ohau River. Continue along Gladstone Road and 300 m  past the Makahika Outdoor Centre on the left is the eastern entrance to the Arapaepae Lookout Trail. It is a further 1.9 km along Gladstone Road Poulton Drive junction to the carpark and start of the track.

Know before you go

Several stream crossings are required. 

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.


Kapiti Wellington Visitor Centre
Phone:   +64 4 384 7770
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Address:   18 - 32 Manners Street
Postal Address:   PO Box 10420
The Terrace
Wellington 6143
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