Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023

Beginner - Intermediate

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I've done it Done

Castle Rock

Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023

Beginner - Intermediate

Save Trail Save

I've done it Done

Open

Grunt Factor: 19

Gnarl Factor: 8

24.0km

615m

615m

377m

  

  

  

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Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible

Out and Back

Undulating, some big hills

Dog Friendly

Native bush

Open ridges/tops

Run Makeup

100%

Gravel Road

Average Uphill Gradient: +7.7%

Average Downhill Gradient: -7.7%

Trailhead

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Estimated Times to Run

4:00

Slow

3:00

Moderate

2:30

Fast

Easy to navigate. The entire trail is 12ks one way - so 24k for an out and back. 1k markers the entire way. You can stop for coffee at the turn around point at Waterworks on the 309 Road, have a rest, swim in the stream, then turn around and go back. You can also start this trail from the 309 Road entrance all the way over and back or you can just climb up to the top of the mountain if you want a shorter run (4.5k return)

There has been some logging in the forest but that just clears the view at the top which overlooks Coromandel and back to Auckland. If you take a trip up to the Rock top, you get a commanding view of Coromandel. Be careful, it's a sheer fall to the bottom on one side and no safety rails.

Castle Rock is a prominent peak in the Coromandel Range that lies 8.4 kilometres south-east of Coromandel town, north of a 532 metres (1,745 ft) peak also called Motutere and south of an unnamed 573 metres (1,880 ft) peak in the headwaters of the westward-flowing Pukewhau Stream.

The mountain is a volcanic plug made from remnants of solidified magma, the softer surrounding rock having been eroded away. Motutere means "floating island" a name bestowed by Ruamano, a descendent of Tama-te-kapua. Māori explorers of the area tended to travel along the hill ridges, so avoiding the thick vegetation in the sheltered valleys. Once dusk came they would seek shelter in order to avoid the patupaiarehe whom they believed inhabited these hills. The summit of Motutere would be eschewed after dark for this reason.

It is a very secluded run so parking has never been an issue.

13 km

17 minutes

Yes

No

Easy.

Patchy.

Thermal leggings, Lightweight fleece top, Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Beanie/thermal headwear, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map.

Take water with you and there is also the little shop at the turn around point that is happy to give you plenty of water if you need it.

Can be exposed to wind at the top on a cold day. Take extra layer if you feel the cold. On a hot day, best run earlier in the morning as it can be quite hot on the way home. But if you like the warm, you should be fine.

There can be larger stones in parts on the gravel road if they have been foresting. Do watch your footing in some places. The climb to the top of the rock is gnarly and wet and muddy in winter. This is an option off the main route.

Any of the cafes in coromandel

Trail Legend

Murray Taylor

Murray Taylor

has completed Castle Rock once in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

Nice run, nothing too technical and 100% runnable. I ran from the 390 side, the first couple of km markers seem to be missing. Navigation can get a bit confusing from that side because of all the forestry roads that come off the side. Most of them have private signs and/or bunds across them but don’t worry if you have to go around a gate just before the 3k mark…..otherwise your in for a bit more distance and elevation on a road that takes you towards the summit!

Ben Baxter

March 12, 2022

Good run on a wet and windy winters day! Will have to go again on a sunny day so we can see the view!

Lisl Wollheim Jones

June 27, 2020

Nice hilly gravel road with great views unless you run it in a storm ! Theres no allowed access up to Castle Rock anymore, not been allowed for a while now.

Sandra Fitzsimons

June 27, 2020

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