3 days/3 nights
This trail is easier to do in a south /northerly direction going with the flow of the river. There are five sections which make up the trail, these are predominately gravel with some on-road segments so high vision clothing is recommended. The trail is mostly undulating with some steeper climbs. A good degree of fitness and mountain bike experience is advisable.
DAY ONE. 35.1kms
- Whakamaru Section - 26 kms, 2-3 hours, Grade 3, Intermediate.
- Maraetai Section - 12.3 kms 1.5 hours, Grade 3 Intermediate.
You are collected along with your bikes from your Mangakino accommodation and taken to the beginning of the trail at the southern end at Atiamuri. From here you cycle the 26 kms along the banks of Lake Whakamaru to Whakamaru Village where you will have the opportunity of visiting one of the village café/eateries for a well-earned break. From Whakamaru Village it is a short 12.3 kms back to Mangakino where you finish for the day. Have a shower, relax and later, enjoy one of the eateries in this small town.
DAY TWO – 19 KMS
- Waipapa Section - 19km, 2-3hrs, Grade 4, Advanced.
After breakfast you head off along the trail towards Waipapa Dam, a distance of 19 kms. This is a more remote part of the trail and very scenic. Take your time with this short section (we'll meet at Waipapa at a predetermined time). You’ll stop for a well-earned break and refreshments at Waipapa Dam. From here you will be taken back to Mangakino and your vehicles, you drive at your leisure on to your next accommodation. A refreshing shower, a hearty dinner and a comfortable bed await.
DAY THREE – 26.5km
- Arapuni Section Detour - 20.7kms, 1.5-2 hrs, Grade 3, Intermediate.
- Karapiro Section - 11.5km, 1 hr, Grade 3, Intermediate.
After a beautiful breakfast you are taken back to Huirimu Rd to complete the trail cycling on back country roads and mostly downhill to Arapuni Dam and on to Arapuni Village. If you wish we can go back to Waipapa Dam and you conitnue the trail from there, be aware that this is 14kms mostly climb on road with little sholder. Once at Arapuni check out the Arapuni Swing Bridge and then head into the village for a coffee and another well-earned break. From Arapuni it is a short 11.5 kms to Pokaiwhenua Bridge carpark and the end of the trail.
From Pokaiwhenua we head back to your accommodation to collect your cars.