Spooky Gully and the Rocky ShoreIntermediate
Submitted by Richele McKenzie
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Undulating, some big hills
BeachCoastalOpen tussock/grasslandsOpen ridges/tops
Feb 2021: The first 1.5k of the track isn’t being maintained and the first ascent (from the carpark) has eroded further and become quite dangerous. Take care! If you have an update on this please email us
Head up the steep track on the left side of the creek. Go carefully as the dirt is very loose in places. Stop to catch your breath then head left along a track cut through the gorse. This is quite narrow in places. Eventually it joins the ridgeline, with stunning sea views.
You will pass old stockyards on the coast side. Continue uphill. After a small downhill section you will come to a track on the right. Follow as it drops steeply into Spooky Gully, crosses a small stream then heads steeply up again to Tip Track.
Head right onto Tip Track and run all the way down to Happy Valley Road where you once again turn right. Run down to Owhiro Bay, but do a small detour through Happy Valley Fields, avoiding a bit of asphalt.
Once you get to the end of the road cross to the beach and head right again, but instead of running along the road, jump over the creek (if it's low enough) and follow the rocky shore back to the carpark.
Features of interest
The trail starts at the site of the old Owhiro Bay Quarry. Taputeranga Marine Reserve. Unique flora and fauna. Stunning sea views!
Make Up of Run
Untracked / Route only: 18%
Technical Single Track: 13%
Moderate Single Track: 31%
Farm Road / 4WD Track: 25%
Sealed Road: 13%
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
The trail starts at the gate for the 4-wheel drive track, Te Kopahu Visitor Centre carpark.
Parking is available at Te Kopahou Visitor Centre at the end of Owhiro Bay Parade.
If you miss the Spooky Gully Track you will end up at the Red Rocks Track.
Short-sleeved thermal top, Windproof jacket, Beanie/thermal headwear, Personal Locator Beacon (PLB), Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map.
A tap and toilets are available at the Visitor Centre. There is often a coffee caravan parked there as well.
Exposed to strong winds on the ridges. Can get slippery after rain.
The beginning and the Spooky Gully section are steep with loose gravel. Lots of gorse along the first couple of kms - prickly but may also set your hayfever off.
Post run indulgence
The coffee cart. Not open every day or during bad weather.
Visitor Centre carpark.
Nice coffee and scones. Dog treats!
The Beach House and Kiosk
410 The Esplanade, Island Bay.
The Kiosk (down the back) has nice coffee and lovely gluten free sweet treats. As well as regular treats too.
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See other runs nearby:
Makara Peak Grand Loop
Skyline - Mt Kaukau
Ataturk to Pass Of Branda Loop
WUU2k - 42km Route
Red Rocks Loop
Otari-Wilton's Bush Loop
Barking Mad on Barking Emu
Aro Valley - Red Rocks Thigh Buster
Polhill to Turbine loop
Park 2 Peak 2 Park
Swing Into Action
Te Ara Papararangi Views
Mount Kaukau Loop
Johnston Hill Loop
Seton Nossiter Waterfall & Lookout
Huntleigh Park and Crow's Nest
Linking the Reserves
Te Ahumairangi Ridgeline
Mid Makara Magic
Te Raekaihau Point