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Holdsworth Lodge to Totara Flats Hut and return, Wellington

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Holdsworth Lodge to Totara Flats Hut and returnIntermediate

Info Info
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Trail Information







Front country - easily accessible

Out and Back

Very hilly

Native bush


Not Suitable (Slow)
6:00 (Moderate)
4:00 (Fast)



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From Holdsworth Lodge, cross the bridge and continue up the track toward Donnelly Flat. Turn left at the signpost and climb the ‘Gentle Annie’ track towards Mountain House shelter. This well-graded track follows the ridge to the Totara Creek turnoff. Follow the track along the ridge to a high point, 575 m, and continue along the track, heading down towards Totara Creek.

Follow the creek on the left to the swing bridge crossing, then continue down the stream on the right. At the Waiohine River, cross the bridge and follow the signs to Totara Flats Hut, which has mattresses, wardens’ quarters and toilets. Retrace your steps for the return.

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Make Up of Run

Technical Single Track: 60%

Moderate Single Track: 40%

Route Data


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Overlapping Runs

The following trails overlap with this run 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 Strava activity for each

Holdsworth to Kaitoke

Holdsworth to Kaitoke

Length: 34.60km

Hooper Loop - Mt Holdsworth

Hooper Loop - Mt Holdsworth

Length: 12.00km

Powell Hut

Powell Hut

Length: 15.00km


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Wild Explorers

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  • Access

    Turn off SH 2 onto Norfolk Rd, 2 km south of Masterton. This is signposted and there is a timber processing plant on the corner. Follow Norfolk Road for 15 km to Holdsworth.

    Daily rail and regular bus services operate between Wellington and Masterton. Taxis, or prebooked buses for large parties, can be hired for travel between Masterton and Holdsworth. Plenty of public parking and camp sites at Holdsworth

    21 km

    23 minutes



  • Staying Safe


    Follow the orange DOC triangles


    Thermal leggings, Lightweight fleece top, Short-sleeved thermal top, Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Windproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Personal Locator Beacon (PLB), Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Survival bag, Survival blanket, Cellphone, Map, Headtorch and spare batteries, Gaiters.

    Take your own water

    Tararua Forest Park has severe weather conditions at times. Always carry enough clothing and rainwear for cold conditions. Check weather forecasts before departing and allow ample food for your journey. Whilst the major rivers on this route are bridged, some side streams are not. These can rise very rapidly in heavy rain. Do not attempt to cross flooded streams. Be prepared to wait if conditions become dangerous.

  • Post run indulgence

    Watermill Bakery
    Blakes Road where Norfolk Road and Holdsworth Road meet
    no website
    1. If you’re hungry and it’s Friday your first stop should be Bolly’s or Norfolk Road Pizza, officially known as the Watermill Bakery. You know somewhere is good if they don’t advertise, have no website, are located at the end of a gravel road, and are full every Friday. You have to ring them on a landline (+64 06 370 1129) to order the number of bases you will want for the evening and tell them what time you will be coming. From 5pm onward you head out to Blake’s Road at the base of the Tararua Ranges where you will find a log cabin centred around a pizza oven. They only take cash and they don’t sell drinks so you will need to take your own or help yourself to a glass of water from the tap. Share large tables, a beer and a chat. The pizza is delicious and the surroundings are so laid back they’re horizontal, this is the perfect setting for a super chilled evening after a great tramp.

    Clarevile Bakery
    3340 State Highway 2 Clareville Carterton 5713
    Clareville Bakery is home of New Zealand's best pie for 2014, and some of the best artisan bread and European-style pastries you can buy. All made on-site from natural ingredients. Treat yourself to a cronut or a bite-sized 'Mikecronut' (made by baker Mike) - they're irresistible!

  • Sponsor this trail

    If you are interested in learning about sponsorship opportunities, please get in touch below:


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