Last Updated: 3rd Jan 2024


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The Nile

Westport, West Coast

Submitted by Katie Smith

Last Updated: 3rd Jan 2024


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I've done it Done


Grunt Factor: 7 ?

Gnarl Factor: 34 ?








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Trail Map

Type of Run

Front country - easily accessible

Out and Back

Totally/mostly flat

Native bush


Run Makeup


Easy Single Track

Moderate Single Track

Technical Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +7.6%

Average Downhill Gradient: -8.6%


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Estimated Times to Run







This is a short but stunning little out-and-back along the Nile River. Before you start, wander down to the river flat and have a look at the limestone bluffs. At the right time of year these are lined with blooming rata.

Head into the start of the track - this follows the general direction of the light rail tracks used for a commercial caving trip, but with a dedicated footpath that criss-crosses this several times. At present [April 2019] one short section of track on the river side of the rail line is washed out - just follow the rail here (there is plenty of space and little used). You will reach a clearing with a signpost - if you want to have another look at the river follow the short track to the bank marked "Nile River and Changing Area" - otherwise take the right-hand turn marked "Metro Cave".

You will cross the river on a swing bridge, then soon after this the track heads up several sets of steps to the cave entrance. If you want to go into the cave you need a DoC permit (or can go on a commercial trip with the caving company based in Charleston), so just enjoy the view across to the bluffs on the far side, before heading back down the way you came. If you want to make this run longer, Darkies Terrace is a quiet road and pleasant to run on - this adds about 4km each way. It is also possible to park about 1.5km along it at the sign to Argyle Track, and add this on too if you like!.

Stunning limestone bluffs, a cave entrance at the end of the track, lush West Coast bush

If you know of any public toilets near the trail start or on the route, please login and then let us know so we can update this section.

Plenty of parking, no public transport

30 km

28 minutes





Windproof jacket, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map

The river is never far from the track and provides good drinking water

Muddy after rain

Trail Legend

Richele McKenzie

Richele McKenzie

has completed The Nile once in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

Sooo special..., I agree wayy to scenic was hard to just not to stop stare and admire, i absolutely adored this little gem of a trail, up to the cave and back , love love love, unique and very special. Thankyou...

Kirsty Richmond

October 10, 2021

Fantastic little run. Great for a blast as the trail flows beautifully but you still need to pay attention for the odd root and rock. Be aware you will get wet feet as the trail goes into the edge of the river avoiding by a small stream. After a couple of days rain there were a few puddles and a bit of mud but you could avoid most if you were fussy. River at the carpark was great to wash muddy shoes.

Kirstine Collins

July 7, 2021

Way too gorgeous to run frankly as the scenery and forest is epic. So beautiful I’m speechless.

Isobel Stout

February 13, 2021

Perfect wee run, by adding all the side bits I got it up over 6km. Loved it.

Mike Tennent

December 28, 2019

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