Whatitiri Track – Cascade Kauri Regional Park
“From the carpark at the end of Falls Road, Whatitiri Track leads over a grassy picnic area into paddock, then descends via a tractor track to cross Waitakere Stream. The track continues through bush for 300m to a grass clearing and on through the first farm gate*. The track turns left up onto grassland for 700m through two more gates, then turns again to follow the bush boundary as the track climbs to meet Long Road Track. (2.9km)”
Both of my kids love the Whatitiri Track. The biggest reason is perhaps that one of the first things they get to do is cross a stream, in fact, if given a chance they’ll both happily play there for hours. Isabelle sets herself up on one of the larger rocks and sketches while my baby builds dams, clambers up banks and gets dirty (or wet, or more often than not, both).
After the stream crossing, the track enters bush and from there is slightly undulating, muddy but, easy going and when you get to the clearing (which looks like a small paddock), head straight ahead, there is no gate (although from the description on the Regional Park Website, there may have been one at some stage).
The track then heads upwards on the edge of the bush where you pass by the stream again and there is another very small water crossing (the sides of which are very slippery when wet) a little later on.
The last water crossing has a bridge and the section after that has recently been resurfaced with gravel (as in they were in the middle of resurfacing last time we went up the track, so I’m guessing they’ve finished by now) but once you reach the bend it’s back to having grass underfoot and is more like a farm walk (albiet a somewhat steep one!)
At the top of what seems like a REALLY long climb, the track turns at a right angle (right) where you continue (along a very slight ascent) until you reach a farm gate. There is a fence stile located here to allow you to clamber over and you continue to walk straight through a field (with grazing cattle) following marker poles on the ground.
You’ll eventually see a sign on the left and a gravel road. This road heads upwards to the T junction of the Long Road Track (going left and right). Left will take you back into the forest and right will take you out to the section of Long Road that is an “actual road”, you know, that cars drive on lol. The Long Road Track (4.2km) is another track that I’d like to traverse in it’s entirety one day, I’ve done tiny sections of it so far but one day ..
But, back to the matter at hand – The Whatitiri Track, it’s definitely one I’d recommend especially if you have kids in tow, it’s an easy walk (or a really nice run) and they get to cross a stream (its pretty easy if they use hands and feet, the boulders are large enough to clamber over) and the track itself is not usually too crowded (as most other walks branch off the Auckland City Walk, and this one starts down the hill and only has a wee fence post making the way).
On the weekends, however, you will probably come across large groups of trampers on this track, it seems to be a fave, thankfully most of them just walk through the water so the kids have never felt rushed during the stream crossing although if anyone tried to rush my kids this Mummy Bear would soon put them in their place. 😉
For more photos CLICK HERE
Till next time