Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023


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Te Aroha -Waiorongomai Loop

Te Aroha, Waikato

Submitted by Katrina Gurnick

Last Updated: 21st Sep 2023


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Grunt Factor: 30 ?

Gnarl Factor: 43 ?








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Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible


Undulating, some big hills

Native bush

Open ridges/tops

Run Makeup


Sealed Road

Easy Single Track

Moderate Single Track

Technical Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +14.9%

Average Downhill Gradient: -13.0%


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Estimated Times to Run







Start at the track for the Te Aroha Summit from Te Aroha domain. This is an easy to follow track with some decent climbing involved. The track is well marked with orange markers. Once on top you can visit the trig before heading down the Dog Kennel flats trail, this sign is slightly overgrown but is to your right before you reach the summit track. Proceed down the Dog Kennel flats track until you reach a junction with a sign, you need to go right at this junction.

Follow this track, do not turn off at the following two junctions or you will end up heading towards Waihi. Keep on the Waiorongomai saddle track and eventually you reach another junction for the High level Pack track, go right and view Hardy’s hit before continuing along the track. You will come out at the top of Butler’s incline. Again go right onto the Cadmans Track. This is an easy running track and takes you all the way down until you again join the High level pack track. Follow this track down until you reach the car park. Head straight out the tarsealed road and turn right onto Old Te Aroha road. This takes you right back into town and then turn right onto Boundary Street to reach the carpark. Alternatively you can have someone pick you up at the Waiorongomai carpark and this cuts about 5kms off the run

This trail includes the peak Te Aroha.

At the top of Te Aroha there is a trig, on a good day you can see right to the coast as well as getting views of the mountains and wider Waikato area. There is a tunnel and swing bridge on the Waiorongomai side. Also some lovely waterfall/stream crosses as you come down through the valley. There’s also the remains of Hardy’s Hut and numerous mining tunnels and Butler’s Incline to explore

Parking available outside domain. Safe parking spot

1 km

2 minutes




There are a couple of junctions but these are well sign posted. Track is generally well marked


Lightweight fleece top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Windproof jacket, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map

None available

Waterfall/creek crossings can become fast flowing and difficult to crops after heavy or consistent rains. Some of the track can get rather muddy

Trail Legend

Johan Bergman

Johan Bergman

has completed Te Aroha -Waiorongomai Loop twice in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

Great loop, just the road is a bit of a drag at the end! Always a good climb up Te Aroha. Dog kennel track can be a bit slow going, especially in winter. Then great running down wairongomai. My gps 17.2 km with 1023 elevation.

Jane McAlpine

September 19, 2021

Really enjoyed this one! A real grunt going up Te Aroha. Well for me anyway. You can go either way. If you like your downhill technical go up Waiorongomai and down Te Aroha otherwise do it the other way around. Regardless of which way you choose, I recommend doing the road section first if you are doing this in warmer weather. There is no shade at all and it's super hot in the summer. Not much fun at the end of a longer run. On the whole it is just spectacular. The view from Te Aroha is amazing on a clear day and the history and things to see in the Wairongomai Valley is very, very cool. One of my favourite places!

Juliet Iremonger

December 29, 2020

I did this in reverse, Waiorongomai to Te Aroha. Took the high track to the top of butlers incline and then the high track again, missing the second incline. Only muddy section was just after turning onto the Mangakino pack track. The last climb to the summit of Te Aroha required looking deep for a bit more energy in the legs, was running out of puff. Brief stop at the top to enjoy the view, quick run down to the domain at the bottom, losing the light as I did so and needed a torch for the last km. Good path along the road most of the way back towards Waiorongomai valley, lucky because it was dark! 4hr 18 min. 17.57 km.

Luci Gravatt

May 17, 2020

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Overlapping Trails

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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