Last Updated: 11th Nov 2023

Beginner - Intermediate

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Mt Cargill and Organ Pipes

Dunedin, Otago

Submitted by Steve Tripp

Last Updated: 11th Nov 2023

Beginner - Intermediate

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I've done it Done


Grunt Factor: 20 ?

Gnarl Factor: 37 ?








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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


Easy Single Track

Moderate Single Track

Technical Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +13.9%

Average Downhill Gradient: -13.3%


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Estimated Times to Run







From the car park the track heads up the gully with the creek on the left for about 500m. It makes a nice warm up before you cross the bridge over the creek and start to climb. Up through exotic forest for another 500m which then changes to native bush. At the 2km mark there is a lookout over the upper catchment area. Around the 3km mark there is an intersection. Take the left turn to the summit and then the other way on the way down to the organ pipes. If you run on past the organ pipes you come out on Mt Cargill Rd.

This trail includes the peak Mount Cargill.

Mt Cargill summit has great panoramic views of Dunedin and Otago Harbour on a good day. Wonderful sunrises!
The Organ pipes are a really interesting rock formation with great views out over Blueskin Bay and up the east coast.

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.

Plenty of car parking at the car park. Public buses only go as far as the Normanby intersection. it's about 1.5km jog along the road from there.

7 km

15 minutes




Generally good.

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

There are a couple of small waterfalls around half way up the climb. They can dry up if it's been very dry but that doesn't happen often.

It can get really cold up there at any time of year if the weather turns bad. Snow, hail, lightning, and wind are all possible at anytime.

The Grid Cafe and Roastery
282 North Rd
Great coffee and wacky conversation. Open until 3pm most days.

Inch Bar
8 Bank St
Great craft beer on tap and wacky conversation. A very friendly outdoor area where the locals are used to the occasional trail runner and attached dog. Please say hi for me! Open from 3pm everyday.

Trail Legend


Daniel Pettigrew

has completed Mt Cargill and Organ Pipes 3 times in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

Awesome trail. The Organ pipes are simply mind boggling! Great 3 peaks training πŸ‘Œ

Aaron Campbell

March 17, 2021

Well worth the hard climb up. Go first thing in the morning. The views are jaw-dropping!

Joe Benbow

January 6, 2021

Rough run up but worth it for the scenery, views of the coast and definitely the run back down. πŸƒπŸ½β€β™‚οΈ

Ben Walker

December 6, 2020

Ran it in winter, snow on the trail from about 400m up, epic!

Kevin Grimwood

July 25, 2020

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