Last Updated: 25th Sep 2023

Intermediate

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Tupapakurua Falls

National Park, Manawatu - Wanganui

Submitted by Orla Drylie

Last Updated: 25th Sep 2023

Intermediate

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I've done it Done

Open

Grunt Factor: 17 ?

Gnarl Factor: 55 ?

7.5km

510m

510m

900m

  

  

  

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Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible

Out and Back

Very hilly

Dog Friendly

Native bush

Plantation/exotic forest

Run Makeup

80%
20%

Moderate Single Track

Technical Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +11.6%

Average Downhill Gradient: -11.6%

Trailhead

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Estimated Times to Run

1:40

Slow

1:25

Moderate

1:00

Fast

This is a hidden gem in National Park, not often explored due to the technical nature of the trail. It starts off cruisy, leading you into a false sense of security! 1km in is Taranaki lookout - definitely worth a brief stop. Another 2km along and you get a magnificent view of the Falls. And that's when the fun begins! The last 500 metres of this trail is un-maintained so there is quite a clamber down to the bottom of the Falls, but certainly worth the effort. If you're brave, go for a swim but be prepared for the cold!

Re-trace your steps and watch out for goats who often frequent the track

You will be treated with the most delightful waterfall at the end of the track

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.

Small carpark that may hold 8-10 cars. No public transport

2 km

5 minutes

Yes

No

Easy.

Non-existent.

Long-sleeved thermal top, Windproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map

Drink from the stream at the base of the waterfall (at your own risk)

The final clamber down the waterfall can be quite slippery, so beware

Macrocarpa Cafe
3 Waimarino-Tokaan Road, National Park
http://www.facebook.com/cafemacrocarpa
Great coffee, delicious food menu, fabulous staff

Schnapps Bar
Corner of Findlay Street and SH4
http://www.schnappsbarruapehu.com
Huge portions, beer/cider on tap, fireplace, open from 10am, sports bar

Trail Legend

DG

DJ Gillming

has completed Tupapakurua Falls once in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

One of my favourite trails while living in National Park...The bucket brigade has been working steadily for years to improve the track. I typically run or walk here during winter, so what a treat to spy oodles of werewere kokako on my visit in February! 💙🍄

DJ Gillming

August 21, 2023

I did this on a wet day a few years ago. No trouble getting down to the fall, the issue was getting back up. It was worth it for the view of the falls. At that time there was a bucket chain moving gravel for the track, once I got to the end of the chain there was some fantastic single track before the descent.

Kate Annan

April 14, 2021

Great trial close to NP, could even extend it if you wanted to grind up the gravel road to the start. Last 500m is not runnable in any true form, maybe a brisk tramp, might not even be worth it but for the awesome falls at the end. Agree with Mike weather is key, rain a couple of days prior or early morning with the dew and the ground is grippy and run to run. I got 7km and 487m of up and down. As Mike said lots of signs they'll be making improvements or touristifying the trail soon, get at it while you can!

Eddie Crawford

April 5, 2021

Choose your weather to do this... cos the technical bit down to the river was a battle in the dry. Great trail though. Signs that it may be ‘touristified’ over the next few years though, so get out and run it now. I made it nearer to 9km and nearly 500 vert... so be aware.

Mike Tennent

March 12, 2021

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