Last Updated: 15th Feb 2024


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Pinnacles & Billy Goat

Thames, Waikato

Submitted by Mal Law

Last Updated: 15th Feb 2024


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I've done it Done


Grunt Factor: 35 ?

Gnarl Factor: 61 ?








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Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible



Native bush

Open ridges/tops

Run Makeup


Gravel Road

Easy Single Track

Moderate Single Track

Technical Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +13.5%

Average Downhill Gradient: -13.4%


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Estimated Times to Run







Head left out of the campsite and run the gravel road to the start of the track. Follow signs for Pinnacles Hut and pop in there for a glimpse of one of the most palatial huts around.
The route to the summit is well signed and involves lots of steps and clambering on metal rungs fixed into the rock. Not a great place for anyone with vertigo but brilliant for anyone else. The final scramble above the viewing platform to the true summit is well worthwhile, but do so with care.
After drinking in the views head back downhill. About 2k after passing the Pinnacles Hut you'll come to the junction with the Billygoat Track. Hang a left and follow this rocky, sometimes steep, always thrilling, trail all the way back to the valley floor. A final crossing of the river to cool your hot feet (usually no more than calf deep) takes you back to the gravel road. Turn left and a few minutes later you'll be back at your car.

The summit of The Pinnacles are an incredible spectacle of rock with stunning 360 deg views.

Plenty of parking. Toilets.

20 km

35 minutes




Well signposted throughout.


Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Survival bag, Cellphone, Map

There are plenty of stream crossings lower down, all with good drinking water. Also water at the Pinnacles Hut.

Muddy and slippery bare rock after heavy rain. Exposed above the bushily so go prepared for any weather.

Slippery rock surfaces. The river in the valley may be uncrossable after heavy rain.

Trail Legend


Holly Ross

has completed Pinnacles & Billy Goat once in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

Unfortunately the Billy Goat track was closed when we did this so ran as an out and back. Was still awesome nonetheless! Lots of technical running broken up with easier flowey sections. Can get busy on the track as it's a popular walk so best to head out early.

Brad Rivers

December 8

Love this. I did this as part of my training for the surf2firth marathon, then parts of it again for the race itself. Epic run.

Dan Mcphee

May 3, 2023

Get up early, go for sunrise! Absolutely, breathtakingly incredible!! 🌄

Lauren Mai Anderson

February 20, 2021

Completed this run with my wife on Sunday and it was a challenge but enjoyable, awesome views and will be doing it again this summer.

Mark Runciman

January 19, 2021

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