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2 Sugars, 2 Vernons & a Half Shot, Canterbury

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2 Sugars, 2 Vernons & a Half ShotBeginner - Intermediate

Submitted by Brad Spiers

Info Info
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Trail Information







Urban fringe


Very hilly

Native bush
Open tussock/grasslands
Open ridges/tops

Beginner - Intermediate

4:30 (Slow)
3:15 (Moderate)
2:30 (Fast)



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This connects my favourite sections of other tracks (and Wild Things Route Guides) around Mt Vernon and Sugarloaf. All my favourites in one run. I also tried to get as much vertical in there as well (1163m), hence the double summit of Vernon, and of Sugarloaf.

Start up the Vernon Valley track, until you see a marker in Vernon Stream (Rock Fall Warning Sign), or you reach the power lines. Jump on to the Rapaki Road/or Bush Bash to the top. Follow the Crater Rim Track to the top of Mt Vernon via the steep goat track (Excellent views). Follow the Crater Rim to Sugarloaf, heading through two patches of trees, giving a nice alternative to the tussock.

Follow the steep track to the Trig and Antenna (Excellent views). Head down the road to the car park area, then head towards the Sign of the Kiwi Cafe. Connect with Harry Ell Track down towards Victoria Park, head through Latters Spur looking for the East side Bush Track which you follow down to the Bowenvale Valley floor. Head up Valley and join the Lava Flow MTB track.

Once at the top, head towards Sugarloaf on the MTB Track, and go on. Get up there again. Head down the road to the car park area, and towards Sign of the Kiwi, but this time divert on to Mitchell's Track to the left/East (sure have a coffee or an ice cream if you want). You circle under Sugarloaf through native bush with great views over Lyttelton Harbour.

Follow the Crater Rim Track all the way back to Mt Vernon. You know the drill, get up there again. Now descend to the Rapaki Road. Take this down a little bit, until you see a marker in Vernon Stream (Rock Fall Warning Sign) and obvious track, or you reach the power lines. Leave Rapaki Road and descend the Vernon Stream back to the car.

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Features of interest

Excellent views from both Mt Vernon and Sugarloaf (twice)

Sign of the Kiwi Cafe Tussock, and Native Bush

Make Up of Run

Technical Single Track: 10%

Moderate Single Track: 50%

Easy Single Track: 30%

Gravel Road: 5%

Sealed Road: 5%

Route Data


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Wild Explorers

I did it!
  • Access

    Start from Mt Vernon Valley Track Car Park

    Good parking area

    5 km

    12 minutes



  • Staying Safe


    Best to have a map if your not familiar with the tracks mentioned.

    Perfect throughout.

    Thermal leggings, Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map.

    Carry your own. Some available on Harry Ell Track, and at Victoria Park. (Both water fountains).

    Rain would make much of this muddy. Very exposed to wind for a majority of the run.

    Beware of Mt Bikers when you are in the Bowenvale Valley/Area.

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See other runs nearby:

Godley Head loop
Lyttelton to Diamond Harbour
Halswell and Kennedys
Summit Walkway
The Bowenvale Elevator
The Gorsetrack Strikes Back
Rapaki Sugarloaf Return
Sign Of The Takahe - Rapaki
Port Hills Nearly Half Marathon
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Sumner Half Heads
Whigs' Flying Fifty (WFF)
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Gebbies to Packhorse Romp
Hagley Figure of 8
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Avon City Loops
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Gondola Gallop
Orton Bradley Loop
The ATH (Around The Harbour)
Lava - H.ELL Loop
Travis Wetland Loop
Punk Rock Assault On Windsor Castle
The Guv'nor & His Birds
The Crater Rim
Lava Lite
Takahe Half
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