Last Updated: 1st Jun 2024

Beginner - Intermediate

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Otawa Lodge & Otawa Trig Loop

Tauranga, Bay of Plenty

Submitted by Tony Bullot

Last Updated: 1st Jun 2024

Beginner - Intermediate

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I've done it Done


Grunt Factor: 24 ?

Gnarl Factor: 36 ?








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Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible


Undulating, some big hills

With permit

Native bush

Open farmlands

Run Makeup


Sealed Road

Gravel Road

Farm Road / 4WD Track

Moderate Single Track

Technical Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +7.9%

Average Downhill Gradient: -9.0%


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Estimated Times to Run







3.5 km downhill on Tepuke Quarry Rd with 200 meter descent (gravel)

Turn right onto Manoeka road, the 1st 3km is paved the rest gravel, flat and downhill.

The Otawa Trig track starts at the end of Manoeka road, its 4.5km to the Trig with about 500 meters elevation.

From the Trig its 5.2km back to the carpark mostly down with about 200 meters descent. The last 1.2km is open farmland with a marked track some cattle and great views of the forest and out to Mount Maunganui

This trail includes the peaks Otawa and Whareotetarakeho.

The 1st half is mostly gravel roads with views out to Tepuke and Mount Maunganui, the 2nd half is regenerating native forest, mostly native Beech with stands of nikau, no real views until the last km of open farmland with great views out to the Mount.

If you know of any public toilets near the trail start or on the route, please login and then let us know so we can update this section.

20 km

28 minutes

With Permit



The track is fairly well marked with orange track markers and there are a couple of old DOC signs, follow the signs to Upper Papamoa road it's the old name for Tepuke Quarry Road. Do not head towards Whataroa falls


Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map


The start of the Manoeka road trail follows and crosses a rocky creek bed, it is generally runable without getting wet but may not be after heavy rain.

Trail Legend


Pete Bircham

has completed Otawa Lodge & Otawa Trig Loop twice in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

Done this loop a few times and you can start anywhere on the road section and it's good in both directions with the only difference being it you prefer running up or down a road. If you do it clockwise then the climb up to the trig is a steep slog but great training and then you get the gentle runnable gradient back to the car park. Pretty easy to navigate.

Gregory Bassam

September 17, 2023

Bit of an adventure this one!
Te puke quarry downhill is lush! There are a few scary dogs along Manoeka road made us run faster! Once you’re into the trails it’s epic. Make sure you look left for the doc triangles to set you off on the goat track to the trig, otherwise you end up by an old concrete water trough/pool. The ascent to the trig from here is nasty but a great training spot for steep uphill work.

I’d recommend to do what Chris said below and run to the trig, down the time puke side then back up and out. 👌🏼

Zoe Van Mil Potaka

August 23, 2021

I haven't actually done this run but have done an out & back heading up to Otawa Trig & then down the otherside to Manoueka Road before returning the same way. If you want to avoid gravel roads & get in 1200 meters of elevation enjoying trail allnthe way then I would suggest this route.
Just allow a bit more time.

Chris Mitchell

September 12, 2020

I thought I had better attempt this trail again, give that I got lost the first time around. As with last time I started in a clockwise direction (correction on previous review) and made my down the gravel road (free running) until Manoeka Road (slight incline to the end where it turns to gravel again). I managed to not get lost this time around, however the first orange marker was still hard to find located high on a tree, and would have missed the left turn at the clearing if not for my previous attempt. It had rained overnight and the streams were slightly swollen which so be ready to get wet feet unless it's been dry for a few days prior. I found the steepness of hills again to be unforgiving and extremely tough although this time the total distance did add up to a touch over 19km as advertised. I don't think I'll be running the loop again due to the climb, but would consider going to the trig and back from the Reid Road carpark, skipping the full loop. Definitely worth a try if you're up for a challenge, took about 3 hours for me.

Wayne Forlong

July 12, 2020

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