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The Goldsborough, West Coast

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The GoldsboroughIntermediate

Submitted by Katie Smith

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Trail Information





West Coast


Front country - easily accessible

Point to Point (one way)

Undulating, small hills only

Native bush


1:30 (Slow)
1:15 (Moderate)
0:55 (Fast)



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This is a technical little track through beautiful dense West Coast bush. It is marked with orange DoC markers throughout, but does twist and turn a bit, so keep an eye out to check that you're still on track. The surface is narrow, muddy, slippery tree roots and slick rocks - loads of fun!
The track climbs steadily for the first kilometre before levelling out in places along old benches. After about two kilometres you reach a brief opening in the bush, allowing views of the Kapitea Reservoir and inland to the Alps, with Mt Turiwhate dominating the view. You can also see evidence of a current gold mine.
The track continues to wind its way along several benched areas, along an old water race that is mostly overgrown but visible in parts. After the five kilometre mark the track starts heading downhill. As you reach the bottom of this, the track starts to widen and is slightly better maintained. For the last 500m or so it is wide and flat, crossing one bridge before finally opening out into the Goldsborough Campsite, which is fairly busy over summer.
If you want to turn this into a loop run, head left along the main gravel road, which become sealed after about two kilometres, then turn left back into Callaghans Road again. This adds 7km to the distance. You can also tack on a steep loop adding approx 2km by following the signs to the German Gully track (start over a bridge at the campsite) then Goffs Track - a lot of this is too steep to run.

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Features of interest

This follows an old gold mining route. Along the way you can see old mine shafts, dams and water races.
Lots of native birdlife including kaka, and you'll more than likely meet some goats too.

Make Up of Run

Technical Single Track: 90%

Moderate Single Track: 5%

Easy Single Track: 5%

Route Data


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  • Access

    Heading east towards Arthurs Pass from Kumara turn off right to Dillmans Dam on Stafford Loop road. After about 5km turn right onto Callaghans Road, a gravel forestry road, and follow it for about 3km until you see the DoC sign for the Goldsborough track.

    Small carpark but never any other cars there, safe. No public transport. If you want to run point to point you will need to drop a bike or arrange a pickup from the Goldsborough campsite, which is approx 4km past the Callaghans Road turnoff further down Stafford Loop Road.

    10 km

    15 minutes



  • Staying Safe


    The track is well marked but at times indistinct on the ground, and it is easy to lose it at switchback turns, so just need to keep switched on.

    Very patchy.

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

    You cross a few small creeks along the way, and the last kilometre is alongside a creek with plenty of drinking water. It is also available at the DoC campsite at the end of the run.

    Muddy even at the best of times, can turn into a quagmire in places after rain.

    There are lots of unmarked mineshaft through this area, so keep to the track and, if taking a dog (DoC permit needed), keep it in sight.

  • Post run indulgence

    The Theatre Royal Hotel
    Good food, nice atmosphere, they don't mind muddy runners!

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