Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023


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3 Pigs Trail

Whangarei, Northland

Submitted by ChrisDouglas

Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023


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I've done it Done


Grunt Factor: 22 ?

Gnarl Factor: 21 ?








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Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible


Undulating, some big hills

Dog Friendly

Plantation/exotic forest

Run Makeup


Gravel Road

Farm Road / 4WD Track

Moderate Single Track

Technical Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +8.8%

Average Downhill Gradient: -8.5%


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Estimated Times to Run







From the carpark start your run along the road and through the Forestry gates to the Forest HQ (200m). At this point take time to view the Mountain bike forest trail map on the roofed stand on your LHS this will help you to get you bearings. Head up Mains road which is a gravel for 3.4km the first 2km is a medium climb to get you warmed up.
At the 3.4km veer left down a grass road which is running at a 45 deg angle. Follow the grass road which will narrow and run alongside the bush for 1.2km then you will turn left into the bush on a mountain bike trail. This section will wind you through pine forest and up the steep hill where you will emerge at the 8km mark on top of a hill which will transition onto forestry road again.
At the end of this road turn right onto Mains road (9km) them right on Marua Rd then Left onto Lookout Rd (9.4km). Lookout Rd will take you along a 4WD track over the highest point (302m) at the 11.3km mark then down the hill (beware of the slippery clay) and onto a T intersection which you will turn right onto River Rd (14.1km mark Gravel Rd).
On River Rd enjoy some downhill on gravel road through to the 17.5km mark when you will take a right turn onto Waitangi Rd for a bit of a nasty climb (last one I promise). At 18.5 Km turn sharp left on stick Rd and continue for 300m and on your left you will see a forest fire break cut in at the top of the hill (this section is a little rough). Follow the fire break and down the hill until you hit River Rd again (19.8Km). At this intersection take a hard right beside a post with a white sign with a red No 1, follow this delightful single track to the end where you will exit at the forestry HQ.

This trail is the 21km course that is part of the 3 Pigs two-day Marathon organised by the Whangarei Athletics and Harrier club. It is a beautiful setting running gravel roads, 4WD tracks and single track in a mix of pine plantation and Native forest.

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.

100m before the Forestry gates is a parking area for the Adventure forest and Mountain biking trails. This is your starting point. Parking is safe but please take any caution you would normally take with not leaving valuable items on show etc.

10 km

15 minutes




All of the turns I have given Km marks so if you keep an eye on these you should not have to much problem.

Generally good.

Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Beanie/thermal headwear, Personal Locator Beacon (PLB), Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map

Water is available in several creeks in the first 7km but caution need to be taken with hygiene as this is forestry runoff. No drinkable water sources available in the last 14 Km

This trail can become very slippery in wet conditions. The worst area is over lookout Hill on the clay 4WD tracks which are hard clay that becomes very slippery in the wet. You will get a bit of mud on the single track but is very runnable.

Care needs to be taken during the week because this is an operational Forest, All warning signs and closed areas need to adhered to.

Essence Cafe
184 Bank Street Whangarei
Great Coffee, lovely food and friendly staff

Deluca Cafe
6 Rust Ave Whangarei

Cafe Narnia
74 Kamo Road Whangarei
Enter the café through the wardrobe to a magical café with great food and service.

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Trail Reviews

Great mix of forestry and 4WD tracks, with a little bit of single trail. And some hills to keep you honest. Struggled a bit to find the right route where the trail intersects with Nursery Flat Rd. Glad I'd taken a map of the route. Plenty of forestry tracks if you wanted to explore further.

Matt Rowbotham

April 2

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