Abel Tasman Marahau to TotaranuiIntermediate
Submitted by Anika Kuczynski
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Front country - easily accessible
Point to Point (one way)
Undulating, some big hills
Fastest Known Times (FKTs)
Run in either direction: N-S or S-N
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There is good variety in terms of terrain (undulating hills, beaches, firm track with some roots and rocks). However, because it is one of New Zealand's Great Walks, expect to meet trampers (backpackers) and people out on day hikes. Be sure to plan for: 1) transportation to the start (Marahau) and from the end (Totaranui) and be mindful that it takes ~ 2 h to drive back from Totaranui because of windy, hilly roads, 2) the Awaroa Inlet crossing at low tide (check timetable), and 3) weather. Note that sometimes it may be possible and more efficient to take a water taxi to Totaranui and run from there to Marahau, but you need to check the timing of the tide or you won't be able to cross the Awaroa Inlet.
Navigation is easy because there is lots of signage, but it is advisable to print or screenshot the map, so that you know the names of places you will pass and what your options are (e.g., there are several different routes you can take near Torrent Bay).
Features of interest
Lots of native bush, stream crossings via bridges, beautiful rock formations and cliffs, stunning coastal views, beaches, short sections of track on the beach, several undulating hills, one large low tide crossing at Awaroa Bay See the DOC website for more descriptions of the Abel Tasman coastal track.
Make Up of Run
Easy Single Track: 90%
Farm Road / 4WD Track: 5%
Gravel Road: 5%
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Start of the Abel Tasman Great Walk in Marahau
Huge carpark next to track start
There are many different tracks between Observation Beach and The Anchorage. Look for signs to Torrent Bay. Don't go down to Observation Beach (unless you want to add an out-and-back stop).
Thermal leggings, Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof 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.
There is access to filtered water at the DOC huts. We filled up at Bark Bay and Awaroa Huts.
Check the tide timetable and plan accordingly! Storms have taken out bridges before and rivers can flood, so check the DOC website for track closures.
Time your crossing of the Awaroa Inlet well, so that you can do this comfortably.
Post run indulgence
The Smoking Barrel
We went here for brunch the day after our run and everyone loved it. They serve savoury favourites (e.g., burgers and eggs benedict) and the sweet waffles were also a hit. The atmosphere and decor were also really nice.
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See other runs nearby:
Abel Tasman OTB Marahau
Abel Tasman Inland-Coastal Circuit
Abel Tasman Double Dip
Abel Tasman Wander