Progress Water Race Track - AKA Stairmaster 2000Beginner
Submitted by Mike Tennent
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Front country - easily accessible
Out and Back
Undulating, small hills only
The track is extremely overgrown in places and there is a bit of windfall in places, although both are easy enough to navigate, they slow things down.
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Head over the large wobbly swing bridge, on to the trail. The first set of steps takes you up to the level of the water race and from there, where possible you follow the race. There are frequent dips where you will be taken down steps to a gully and up steps on the other side to rejoin the water race.
In places the trail was completely overgrown with ferns, requiring careful progress to make sure your footing is safe. But the open bits are magic, wonderful beech forest and moss trail that is made for running.
There were 1184 steps (up and down) from the start to the turnaround at just over 2.5km and yet it all works to make this something just a bit different and enjoyable. Eventually, at the turnaround, you will reach a large sign that informs you of the end of the Progress Water Race Trail and back you go to the start.
Features of interest
The Old Water Race from mining days is along most of the track, large pipe in evidence in a couple of places and a few water race tunnels.
Make Up of Run
Untracked / Route only: 0%
Technical Single Track: 5%
Moderate Single Track: 15%
Easy Single Track: 80%
Farm Road / 4WD Track: 0%
Gravel Road: 0%
Sealed Road: 0%
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Head out of Reefton towards Springs Junction on SH7 for 11km and you will see a sign for Inangahua Swingbridge Picnic Area, turn in there and follow the gravel road to the swing bridge where you park.
Plenty of room to park.
Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map.
Plenty of streams around, as well as the river at the start.
If the trail is still overgrown, take care with your footing when you can't see the trail through the undergrowth. Easy to trip on a log or step in a hole.
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