Kaituna to Holdsworth LodgeIntermediate
Submitted by Rita Onosa
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Back country - remote
Point to Point (one way)
Native bushRiversideOpen farmlands
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The track starts with about 2km of 4WD tracks through farmland but don't be fooled people it's going to get tough! Be aware of the cows and bulls at the start and along the first couple of km as they roam freely and can look quite scary. :-) Follow the track to the next sign which sends you slight right and here is where you enter the bush and the climb starts. Single track very technical in places, lots of tree roots, rocks and plenty of mud in the winter or after lots of rain. After about 9km you come across the river and over one of the swing bridges you nearly at Mitre Flats Hut. Turn right and 200m up the track is the hut. Nice place for a spot of lunch before heading back the way you came and at the sign take the Atiwhakatu Hut track. 5km but don't be fooled wild thing, the next 5km (according to the signage!) which is more like 6.5km, are the gnarliest yet. It's all up hill very, very technical and feels like it's going on for ever. No running really along this track. I nearly lost my sense of humor climbing up. :-) Across a few more swing bridges, rocky, slippery mud, a few creek crossings you get to Atiwhakatu Hut and can finally relax as from here on it's the most pretty single track and all runnable. 7km to the finish line and your legs will be thanking you for finally running on some undulating nice track with the short sharp bit thrown in every here and there. Go fast and enjoy, you're on the straight home!
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Features of interest
Beautiful native bush, a few cool waterfalls along some of the many creeks and about 6 swing bridges.
Make Up of Run
Technical Single Track: 75%
Moderate Single Track: 15%
Farm Road / 4WD Track: 10%
Head west from Masterton central following Upper Plain Rd, take the slight left at the fork and follow Upper Waingawa Rd which will take you to the Waingawa entrance of Tararua Forest Park.
There is parking on the side of the gravel road by the park entrance, which is safe.
The track is very well signposted and has recently been cleared so just follow the orange triangle and you should be sweet.
Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Windproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Personal Locator Beacon (PLB), Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Survival bag, Cellphone, Map, Headtorch and spare batteries, Gaiters.
There are lots of creeks along the way with pristine water. Also water available at both huts.
Very technical track for most of the way, steep narrow track only one foot wide in places, rocks and lots of mud in winter.
In parts the track is very very narrow with possible one foot wide areas so be mindful of that. Vet condition can make those parts quite tricky to navigate.
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See other runs nearby:
Blue Range Hut
Holdsworth to Kaitoke
Jumbo - Holdsworth Circuit
Hooper Loop - Mt Holdsworth
Waipoua River & Henley Lake Trail
Pinnacle Ridge Plus
Holdsworth Lodge to Totara Flats Hut and return
Deliverance Cove & Lighthouse Loop