Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023


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Ready Money Trail

Cheviot, Canterbury

Submitted by John O'Connell

Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023


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I've done it Done


Grunt Factor: 14 ?

Gnarl Factor: 14 ?








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Trail Map

Type of Run

Urban fringe


Undulating, small hills only

Dog Friendly

Plantation/exotic forest

Open tussock/grasslands

Run Makeup


Gravel Road

Farm Road / 4WD Track

Easy Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +4.8%

Average Downhill Gradient: -6.9%


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Estimated Times to Run







Beside the toilet block in the car park is a blue information board marking the start of the trail. Follow the trail which starts with a small climb. 100m or so in (where there may be a fallen tree) be sure to follow the Ready Money trail which is on the right and don't take the fork heading off to the left.

The trail is well marked with orange triangles and the occasional blue sign post indicating which way to go to stay on the trail. About 1K into the trail it merges into a 4WD/gravel road for a short time but quickly returns to the forest trail again. 95% of the trail is under cover of the trees making it very pleasant on a hot summer's day. After about 1.5K you come to a blue sign pointing up to a lookout spot where there is a bench that you can sit and look over some of the Canterbury plains and the adjacent farm.

At the 2K mark the trail runs down to the gravel road at the first cattle grate you met when driving in. The walking trail continues on the other side of the road and winds it's way back to the car park, crossing the gravel road one more time. None of the trail is on the gravel road, you just need to cross it a couple of times. In the final 500m or so, there are a couple of other trails forking off to the right. Ignore them and continue following the walking trail closest to the gravel road which will take you back to the car park.

During the trail there are also a couple of closed walking gates that you need to pass through and close behind you. The whole reserve is well fenced with deer and sheep fencing at the outer perimeters and dogs are allowed to roam off lead if under control of the owner.

The benched and signposted trail meanders through magnificent plantations of oak, eucalyptus and conifers, and takes in several historic sites. The trail leads up to a lookout over the Cheviot basin, and in Spring, much of the trail has extensive plantings of daffodils. The trail’s name celebrates the Cheviot Hills landowner Ready Money Robinson, who earned his nickname for buying the North Canterbury estate with a wheelbarrow of cash at the Lands and Deeds office in Nelson. The foundations of Ready Money’s mansion house are a feature of the Cheviot Hills Reserve and historic photographs of the estate in its heyday can be viewed at the front of the nearby cricket pavilion which also provides picnic tables and shelter overlooking the cricket field.

Plenty of parking at the start of the trail.

2 km

3 minutes




Easy navigation, well sign posted. Just follow the orange triangles and blue sign posts.

Generally good.

Short-sleeved thermal top, Windproof jacket, Whistle, First aid kit, Cellphone

Although there is a very clean toilet block at the start of the trail with a sink and water, the tap water is clearly marked as NOT DRINKABLE. Bring your own water which you can buy in nearby Cheviot.

The blue information sign at the start of the trail says "Trail not recommended in high winds. Enter at your own risk." The trail is not exposed to wind but it may be that high winds could bring down trees in the reserve so worth considering before entering.

Mt Beautiful Two Rivers Cafe
11 Hall Street, Cheviot. Just on your left as enter Cheviot from Christchurch.
Great indoor/outdoor ambience. Interesting and attractive artwork on the walls for sale. Friendly staff, great coffee, tasty salmon bagel and dog friendly too. Just be sure to bring your dog in through the back gate which is accessed through the driveway to the right of the cafe and not through the cafe like we did.

Cheviot Tea Rooms
33 Hall Street, beside Four Square supermarket on your left as you enter Cheviot from Christchurch
Friendly, quick to serve takeaway coffee, also sells ice creams and cold drinks and has it's own cafe though not quite the same ambience as the Two Rivers Cafe down the road.

Trail Legend

Lynette ELFICK

Lynette ELFICK

has completed Ready Money Trail once in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

3rd time round, a massive tree blew down right behind me!

Tony Sharpe

April 16, 2022

Great little trail to stop at on your way between Christchurch and Blenheim.

Richele McKenzie

February 18, 2021

Cruisy little break to the trip north. Nice trails to run on, really dry today. Wonderful cricket ground, I want to play there!!

Tony Sharpe

October 7, 2020

A nice little loop for training if you are in the area. It can get pretty muddy after a bit of rain

Paul Forbes

April 13, 2020

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