Last Updated: 12th Apr 2024


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Involution Loop

Nelson, Nelson

Submitted by Pete Marshall

Last Updated: 12th Apr 2024


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Grunt Factor: 20 ?

Gnarl Factor: 44 ?








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Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible


Very hilly

Dog Friendly

Native bush

Run Makeup


Gravel Road

Farm Road / 4WD Track

Easy Single Track

Moderate Single Track

Technical Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +12.6%

Average Downhill Gradient: -12.7%


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Estimated Times to Run







From the carpark head up the road just before the quarry and take a right turn over the bridge. Avoid the right turn, this is where you will return from and run up the road about 500 meters until you get to the Involution track on the left. Run up the track to the top, take note there may be mountain bikers riding down. At the top is a small clearing with several tracks off, take the Widdershins track. Follow this track down and take in the amazing views to another clearing. You will now see a much wider track through some trees, this is the Barnicoat track. Run down this to the bottom to complete the loop. About 500 meters into the Barnicoat track you will see a left turn, take this short detour to a grassy field at the top for spectacular 360 degree views.

Technical, steep uphill, rocky and roots and a couple stream crossings. Exposed single track with views. Smooth wide long downhill to finish.

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Park at the carpark

9 km

14 minutes




Generally good.

Thermal leggings, Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map

Couple stream crossings

Rocks and roots, muddy in places. Mountain bikes

Trail Legend

Birte Kleinloog

Birte Kleinloog

has completed Involution Loop 13 times in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

I recommend doing this one anticlockwise so you go the correct way along the mountain bike tracks. It does mean a hard slog up the 4wd track to the paragliders though. Loved running down the zig zags through the bush. All the trails were open.

Richele McKenzie

December 28

I really enjoyed getting back into the hills with this run. The zig zagging involution trails is tough but varied enough to not knock out all the stuffing. You get a couple of sneak views thru the trees going up but the best are when you come down the smooth forest trails. Unfortunately at the moment there is a trail closure about 2km from the end which means you have to detour up and then down a very steep track which is a bit of a killer on the knees. The gpx doesn't show it but there is a nice little trail off to the left of the last bit of gravel road that pops you out where the description says at the start which is much nicer than the gravel road.
Running the way described means you get a nice little warm up on the flat before the hills and are facing out to the views on the way down. Think this might become my go to trail for when visiting Richmond.

Rebecca Sunderland

September 20, 2021

Great trail. I prefer running it counterclockwise downhill through the trees is great!

Tim Parkin

April 27, 2021

Nice track uphill with rocks and roots to keep it interesting, and can get mucky after rain. Great views at the top, nice forests to run through, even a few little streams. Downhill is smooth forest roads.

Andrew Hogg

January 15, 2021

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These overlap with this trail to some degree. You may wish to combine them but please note that to qualify for FKTs on these runs you should record a separate activity for each.

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