Last Updated: 20th May 2024


Save Trail Save

I've done it Done

Spooky Gully and the Rocky Shore

Wellington, Wellington

Submitted by Richele McKenzie

Last Updated: 20th May 2024


Save Trail Save

I've done it Done

Grunt Factor: 15 ?

Gnarl Factor: 50 ?








Login as a VIP to see driving directions, distance and time.

Trail Map

Type of Run

Urban fringe


Undulating, some big hills

Dog Friendly



Open tussock/grasslands

Open ridges/tops

Run Makeup


Sealed Road

Farm Road / 4WD Track

Moderate Single Track

Technical Single Track

Untracked / Route only

Average Uphill Gradient: +13.8%

Average Downhill Gradient: -12.3%


Login as a VIP to see the trailhead information.

Estimated Times to Run







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.

The trail starts at the site of the old Owhiro Bay Quarry. Taputeranga Marine Reserve. Unique flora and fauna. Stunning sea views!

Public toilets are available in the carpark at the trailhead.

Parking is available at Te Kopahou Visitor Centre at the end of Owhiro Bay Parade.

9 km

15 minutes




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.

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.

Trail Legend

Tony Sharpe

Tony Sharpe

has completed Spooky Gully and the Rocky Shore once in the last year.

Learn about Trail Legends.

You and Spooky Gully and the Rocky Shore

As a VIP member you can record private notes for this trail, see all of your times and more.

Register Now

Already have an account? Login now

Trail Reviews

Wonderful loop. The gorse and approach was no big trouble today, just minor exfoliation and only blood on one limb

Tony Sharpe

October 31, 2023

I’ve got to be honest Richele but this was torture! Slipped several times going up the first track, slipped down the ridge at the top then spent 2k bush-bashing through gorse which my legs bore the brunt of. I’m sure it would be lovely once cleared! I will congratulate you on one thing though - it’s not often I say that the Tip Track was the highlight of the run but it was on this one! Haha!

Joe Benbow

December 26, 2020

Apologies Wild Things - the last time I popped up the track from the carpark the gorse was really tall. Wear long pants.

Richele McKenzie

November 3, 2020

Login to submit a review

Trail Running Community

Find people who are interested in or have completed this trail run.

You must register or login to view this feature.

Register Now

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.

Red Rocks Loop

Red Rocks Loop

Length: 13.3km

Level: Beginner - Intermediate

Other trails nearby
Aro Valley - Red Rocks Thigh Buster

Aro Valley - Red Rocks Thigh Buster

Length: 25.1km

Level: Intermediate

Mount Kaukau Loop

Mount Kaukau Loop

Length: 4.2km

Level: Beginner - Intermediate

Piwakawaka Track

Piwakawaka Track

Length: 1.1km

Level: Beginner

Waimapihi Treatie

Waimapihi Treatie

Length: 7.1km

Level: Beginner

Find more trails and peaks nearby