Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023

Intermediate

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Hapuakohe Hills

Hamilton, Waikato

Submitted by Ryan Hattle

Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023

Intermediate

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I've done it Done

Open

Grunt Factor: 51

Gnarl Factor: 56

22.9km

1955m

1865m

535m

  

  

  

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Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible

Point to Point (one way)

Very hilly

Native bush

Plantation/exotic forest

Open farmlands

Run Makeup

13%
21%
30%
36%

Farm Road / 4WD Track

Easy Single Track

Moderate Single Track

Technical Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +17.6%

Average Downhill Gradient: -16.8%

Trailhead

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Estimated Times to Run

Not suitable

Slow

6:00

Moderate

4:30

Fast

Start at the DOC sign for the route. For the first 0.8km you will be following a farm track. Follow the orange pole markers until you climb a stile and enter the bush (Mangapiko Valley Scenic Reserve).

You climb about 120m through a mature forest before the track emerges at a farm fenceline and offers broad views across the hills and Hauraki Plains to Mt Te Aroha and the Kaimai Range. The track follows the fenceline for about 500m with continued views to the east and then ducks back into the bush for a short way before emerging again at the fenceline.

From here it’s a short but steep climb up private land to Pukeitionga Station (510m) which offers extensive views out west over the Waikato to Mt Pirongia and east to the Hauraki Plains. The track then heads back into the bush and down a few steep and slippery slopes.

The track continues north until a steep ascent to a radio station at the summit of Maungakawa Peak (535m), the highest point of Hapuakohe Walkway which offers views north to the Firth of Thames. You briefly follow a farm track before the track enters the bush again. It can be easy to miss the bush entry, but it is marked with an orange arrow.

The track then heads north to Ohinewai Rd (9.4km) steeply dropping 380m, before climbing back up 100m to the road. You cross the road and continue to climb another 120 meters.

The next 5km is very steep, technical, and overgrown. There is a section through here where the trail follows a fence line on the eastern side.

At about 15km there is a very steep descent down a rutted long grass paddock. Keep an eye out for where the trail re-enters the bush at the bottom of this.

Some more steep downward climbing before the last long climb (200m). From here until the end there are some really nice, fun runnable sections of single trail if your legs haven't had enough. From 21.8km to the finish is a nice run through some pine forest.

You do pass one small, but pretty waterfall on route.

You can park inside the paddock where the sign for the trail is, just remember to shut the gat behind you. Additionally running this route as a point-to-point will mean leaving a car or organising pick up from the finish which is at the end of North Road of State Highway 27.

54 km

46 minutes

Unknown

No

Moderate.

The route is marked with orange triangles, however there are sections that are very overgrown and rough going, so it can be easy to go off track. If you don't see another orange marker, just back track a bit and you should be able to look around and spot the next one.

Patchy.

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 blanket, Cellphone, Map, Headtorch and spare batteries, Gaiters.

A lot of this route is along a ridge line with no water. There are sections where you drop down and cross several small streams around 8.8km, 11.4km and 16.7km. Another option would be to drive to Ohinewai Road where the trail crosses and leave extra water and food here for when you pass through, it just means a bit more logistics.

Potentially some muddy slippery sections after rain

Some very steep technical downs and ups.

Native Tree Cafe
7 Church Road Mangatarata, RD6, Thames 3576
https://www.facebook.com/NativeTreeCafe
Right at the bottom of the road where you finish. Nice outdoor area to chill with a coffee after you day out. There have pretty tasty pies. They do close at 3:30pm though, so run fast.

The Cornerstone Cafe
26 State Highway 25, Mangatarata 3576
https://thecornerstone.nz/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Lunch-Menu-2020.pdf
Close to finish of run, good reviews on google.

Woodturners cafe
3815 State Highway 2, Thames 3576
Close to finish of run, good reviews on google.

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