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Matarangi & Rings Beach Loops, Waikato

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Matarangi & Rings Beach LoopsBeginner - Intermediate

Submitted by Melissa Franklin

Info Info
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Trail Information







Urban fringe


Undulating, some big hills

Native bush

Beginner - Intermediate

3:30 (Slow)
2:45 (Moderate)
2:00 (Fast)



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Run down Harbour Drive on the unsealed road. If it's summer there will be lots of people driving their boats to the harbour so be watchful and hold your breathe in the dust clouds. Once at the harbour turn right, running across the grass. As you continue this direction you will see the track forming as a mixture of grass and sand, follow this path around the headland. If interested you can go out on to the beach and see the NZ dotterel nesting areas (please step with care).

The path around the headland continues along side the beach to your left and the golf course to your right. After a while you will end up on a large grass area with houses to your right, you may continue on this grass or head down to the beach. If you continue on the grass area the golf course will stop you continuing for the length of the headland, so at this point head down to the beach and run on the sand. Run to the rocks at the end of the beach and you will see Bluff Road.

Turn right on Bluff Road and continue along the road until Goldfields Dr inserts Bluff Road and on the left side of the road you will see a single track going up the hill. Take the time to clean your shoes and then head up the trail until you get to an intersection in the trail where left takes you directly to Rings Beach and right is the Rings Beach and wetland track. Turn right and follow this track up the hill (to see great views) and it eventually will take you down to the wetlands (some of the downhills are pretty technical). Keep a close eye out for track markers as sometimes it is difficult to identify what direction to take.

At the point the wetland loop goes to the right of the track, you can choose to do this loop or continue straight ahead on the boards that cross the wetlands (to get the full 20kms I actually did the wetland loop twice, the loop is about 2kms). Whether you do the loop or not the track will eventually end at a road (Bluff Road). Turn left on this road and run down the hill and continue until you see the sign (on your left) that indicates the direction back to Matarangi. Follow this track up and over the hill back to Bluff Road (do not run around the headland on Bluff Road as it is closed to all traffic). Once exiting the track, run up Goldfields Dr and turn left on to Kenwood Dr then turn right on to Matarangi Dr and follow this road until you get back to where you started.

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Features of interest

Rare bird habitats, native forest, wetlands, great coastal views

Make Up of Run

Untracked / Route only: 3%

Technical Single Track: 10%

Moderate Single Track: 60%

Easy Single Track: 15%

Gravel Road: 2%

Sealed Road: 10%

Route Data


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Wild Explorers

I did it!
  • Access

    Corner Ngaio Drive East and Harbour Drive. Where the sealed road turns into a unsealed road.

    You can park at the start point or drive down the unsealed road (harbour drive) and park where the cars with boat trailers park.

    2 km

    4 minutes



  • Staying Safe


    Just watch for track markers when doing the Rings Beach and wetland loop.

    Generally good.

    Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map.

    No water unless you wish to drink saltwater!

    I have only done this track in summer and it was dry as a bone, but I can image it would be very wet and muddy in winter or after lots of rain .

    Keep to the track when on the Rings Beach and wetland loop. This area as been mined in the past so there might be holes for you to fall into!

  • Post run indulgence

    Pipers cafe
    197 Matarangi Drive

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