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Length: 22 mi (35.4 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: One-way
Elevation: -
Total: 6 riders

Mountain Biking Moerangi Track

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#30 of 381 mountain bike trails in New Zealand
#3606 in the world

This is a challenging 37km back-country ride with about 1000 metres (3300 feet) of elevation gain. It's worth every metre as it goes through the best remnant of unraped native forest in New Zealand. It can be done by fit riders in one long day. You could do it in two or three days but you'd have to carry food and sleeping bag to stay in one or more huts.

This is how the Department of Conservation describes the track on their website at http://www.doc.govt.nz/parks-and-recreation/tracks-and-walks/east-coast/te-urewera/moerangi-mountain-bike-track.
"The track is an intermediate grade biking track (Grade 3) designed to attract people of all skill levels. The track does have sustained hill sections and therefore requires a medium to high level of fitness.

For the passionate mountain biker the track has earned itself a reputation as a must do track. With 35km of challenging single track and 1000 metres of climbing it's a ride that demands respect but also offers rich rewards - what goes up inevitably comes down!

The three huts on the track are a great place to have a rest and let others catch up. They also pose an opportunity to turn this demanding ride into an overnight adventure.
"Okahu Road to Skips Hut Distance: 7 km

Leaving the car park the trail immediately climbs towards the first saddle gaining 100 m in height in just 1 km. The rewards are instant. The trail then has an undulating descent following the Whangatawhia Stream for a further 6 km. There are numerous bridges to cross before reaching Skips Hut.

"Skips Hut to Rogers Hut Distance: 6 km

From Skips Hut the trail continues along the Whangatawhia Stream a short distance before beginning a sustained climb of 150 m. Once the saddle is reached after 2 km, a fast and flowing 2.5 km descent follows. Rogers Hut is the perfect stopping point at the confluence of the Moerangi and Wairoa streams.
"Rogers Hut to Moerangi Hut Distance: 9 km

Leaving Rogers Hut the track heads west (take a right at the junction) up the Moerangi Stream. This section is an undulating climb with some steeper pinches. The right hand side of the track has some exposed sections with large drop offs - take care. Don't miss the short detour to Moerangi Hut if you are keen on a visit.
"Moerangi Hut to River Rd Distance: 13 km

Immediately from the hut the real climbing begins. The trail continues to weave its way up the Moerangi Stream for a short period before ascending the saddle. The climb is steep and sustained gaining almost 300 m - most will find it a challenge. A rest point is available at the saddle and some cell phone reception is possible.

From the saddle it's a fast and long descent loosely following the ridge line before dropping down to the Whirinaki River. Take care as the sides of the track have large drop offs. This is a stunning section of downhill riding that is sure to please.

From Te Whaiti Nui A Toi Canyon it is a short climb to the River Rd car park.
"Navigation tip: keep an eye on the green trail markers that line the side of the Moerangi Track to ensure you stay on track.

There is also a good orientation map on the website.

Before you go
  • Drinking water 
  • No E-bikes permitted 
  • Fat biking allowed in winter 
  • No Fee required 
  • No Lift service 
  • No Night riding allowed 
  • No Pump track 
  • Restrooms 
Getting there
Murupara is about 90km (56 miles) south east of Rotorua on highway 5 then highway 38. From Murupara travel south east along Te Whaiti Road. Once you reach Te Whaiti this road becomes Ruatahuna Road. Continue for a further 7.5 km, then turn right into Okahu Valley Road. The car park is 9km south along Okahu Valley Road. The other end of the trail is at the River Road car park. From Te Whaiti turn left into Minginui Road and follow the signs to River Road car park. According to the Kennett Brothers, the best way to organise a shuttle is to get in touch with the Jail House Farmstay and Shuttles, www.jailhousefarmstay.co.nz. Sounds like a nice place to stay as well!
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  • olimoo

    This is trail along a river vallery for those that enjoy wilderness rides rather than groomed trail centres. A few bits required carrying our bikes (like traversing a landslide that had wiped out a chunk of the trail). Physically exhausting, lots of lung busting climbs, fast descents with rocks and ruts to keep you on your toes and few river crossings too. Loads of fun.

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