Waikato River Trails

3.33 out of 5
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elevation (m)

Trail Description
About this trail
The Waikato River Trails are actually one continuous trail that happens to be promoted as five linked trails!! Total length is 103km, 64 miles, including some parts that are on roads. ----

The Waikato River is the largest in the North Island and there are several hydro-electric dams along its length with long lakes behind them. The trails (sections of the trail!) go alongside five of the lakes and the sections are named after the lake they go beside. You can ride the trail(s) either way but they are generally listed from north to south (going upstream!) as follows:
1. Karapiro, 11.5km, 7 miles, intermediate...
2. Arapuni, 36km, 22 miles, advanced...
3. Waipapa, 19km, 12 miles, advanced...
4. Maraetai, 12km, 7.5 miles, intermediate...
5. Whakamaru, 23.5km, 15 miles, intermediate... ----

While it is possible to ride the entire 103km in a day, these are scenic trails with many points of interest, and places to picnic or swim. The trail(s) are well made with an all weather gravel surface, but it's best to ride them in summer so you can enjoy the lakes which are all swimmable. ----

Many people do the entire length in parts, parking their car at various access points and doing out-and-back rides. People riding from one end to the other generally take three or four days and may need shuttles and accommodation. That's easy to organise. Just call the friendly folk at "Waikato River Trails", 0800 874 978, or look them up on www.waikatorivertrails.com. They'll give you all the advice you need, arrange bike hire if necessary, and book accommodation and shuttles. Be warned though, they'll take away your rights as quick as a flash. You'll even have to sign a waiver for a bus ride! And you won't see it till after they take your money!! They are based in the i-site at Putaruru. ----

Each of the five trail sections has its own description and photos on Singletracks as you may have noticed. Enjoy the ride(s)! ----
Text by jimcummings
added by Ginny_TorySingletrack
Trail Features
Trail features
  • Lift Service
  • Drinking Water
  •   Night Riding
  • Pump Track
  • Restrooms
  • Winter Fat Biking
Directions to Trailhead
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Trail Q&A
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System Trails (5)
System Trails (5)
Waikato River Trails: 2 Arapuni
Waikato River Trails: 1 Karapiro
Waikato River Trails: 3 Waipapa
Waikato River Trails: 4 Maraetai
Waikato River Trails: 5 Whakamaru
Local Info & Nearby Trails
Trail Check-ins
Trail Check-ins
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Recent Trail Check-ins     (1 total check-ins)
  Badger73   on Apr 2, 2019
Photo & Video Gallery (40)
Trail Photos & Videos (40)
Reviews (1)

World Champ

February 1, 2015
Review: Stunning views beside the lakes and river on well formed trails at times remote, at times civilised - there's great variety.

Waikato River Trails MTB Trail 3.33 out of 5 based on 1 ratings. 1 user reviews.
Trail Conditions
Trail Conditions          < / > embed
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