Waiau toa/Molesworth Great Walk Application

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Kaikōura District Council in partnership with Te Rūnanga o Kaikōura and Hurunui District Council, and with the support from over 25 local organisations, have submitted an application for a new Waiau toa/Molesworth Great Walk. The Department of Conservation is undertaking a public engagement process to create two new Great Walks, the Waiau toa/Molesworth proposal will be presented as a potential walk.


While the finer details are yet to be finalised, it is intended the walk will be 65km in length, taking 3-4 days to complete. The walk could be started from either Kaikōura at the Kahutara River Bridge on the Inland Road, or from Hanmer Springs near the Acheron Accommodation House. With the real possibility of making it a loop track by linking the two ends of the walk with a two-day rafting experience on the Clarence River.


Having a Great Walk in Kaikōura would be an amazing asset for our communities and provide economic, conservation, cultural and social benefits for the region. It would be a great chance for walkers to take in our spectacular vistas and mountain views while exploring our rich Māori and European settler history.


Mayor Winston Gray is excited about the opportunity we may have. Kaikōura has done a grand job of creating a global visitor experience around our marine landscape. It is the right time to open up our unique mountain and inland area to the wider world, the Clarence Valley and Molesworth area is a pristine unique environment that has immense opportunities. It would provide an opportunity to connect with existing walk and cycle trails and has the potential to create strong regional growth throughout Marlborough, Kaikōura and Hurunui.


Initial proposals that make it through to the next round of selection will be notified late 2017 to early 2018.