Last Updated: 14th May 2024


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Maori Rock Art Jaunt

Waikari, Canterbury

Submitted by Fiona

Last Updated: 14th May 2024


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Grunt Factor: 6 ?

Gnarl Factor: 19 ?








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Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible

Out and Back

Undulating, small hills only

Open farmlands

Run Makeup


Easy Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +9.6%

Average Downhill Gradient: -9.6%


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Estimated Times to Run







Start along the Waikari Walkway, do not take the path to the plane table. After around 700m of flat walkway you will see a seat and a sign to the Maori rock art. Turn left and follow the fence line and the yellow markers straight up the hill. At the brow of the hill continue following the fence line down in amongst the limestone rock features and then follow the signs pointing to the right to the overhang with the fence protecting the rock art. Return back the same way.

Māori first explored the Weka Pass area about 1000 years ago. The area was originally forested, and Māori would visit the area on their seasonal round for mahinga kai - food gathering. Birds were abundant, and included the now extinct moa and koreke / quail, as well as weka, kererū, kākā, kiwi in the forest, and a variety of waterfowl and freshwater fish in the streams. Māori used the large overhanging limestone shelter as a temporary overnight camp. It was during these stays that they drew on the shelter wall, using charcoal from their fires, and red ochre (haematite) often called kōkōwai. The subjects of their drawings were simple human figures, fish and dogs. Some drawings are more imaginative; others are little more than scribbles.

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.

Lots of parking available on the side of the road or at the public toilets a couple of hundred meters further along the road.

0 km

0 minutes




Generally good.

Lightweight fleece top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map

No water on the walk but water is available in Waikari

Snow possible in winter, may be closed during lambing from 1 August to 1 October. Sheep, cows or horses may be present.

Trail Legend

Christian Couper

Christian Couper

has completed Maori Rock Art Jaunt once in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

The run is just the sideshow. You're seriously missing out if you don't stop off to take in the vistas and rock art on show.

Anthony Sowerby

January 8, 2021

Yet more proof that a trail doesn’t have to be long to be awesome. What a wee gem.

Mike Tennent

November 20, 2020

What a terrific little trail! Straight up and back amongst some stunning landscape and views.

Isobel Stout

October 3, 2020

Great little jaunt to break the journey and stretch the legs. I'd forgotten how steep that hill was in and out.

Rebecca Sunderland

May 29, 2020

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