Friday, May 24, 2024

Storm damage on Taranaki Maunga closes tracks

There’s a big clean up in progress as Department of Conservation (DOC) rangers in Taranaki assess and repair tracks damaged in last week’s storm.

Reports of damage, particularly on the southwest of Taranaki Maunga, have been significant says DOC’s Taranaki District Ranger Supervisor, Andy Johnston.

“We had an awful lot of rain and high winds so there are track washouts and tree windfalls which we are clearing and rerouting as fast as we can,” Mr Johnston said.

Tracks on Taranaki Maunga known to be affected include the upper Ihaia Track to Waiaua Gorge Hut, which has been closed due to a large washout, making the hut inaccessible from the western side of the mountain. The Around the Mountain Circuit (AMC) is closed until this track can be rerouted, he said.

Other damage includes a slip below the Plateau to Dawson Falls section of the AMC, where the track is still accessible, but caution is required.

Tree windfalls on the Waingongoro Track, and at Ratapihipihi and Everett Park Scenic Reserves, will hopefully be cleared this week.

The team is still making its way through the network of tracks both on and off the Maunga.

Trampers heading out need to take extreme care, be aware they may encounter damage and be prepared to turn back.

“Anyone coming across track damage on public conservation land, we’d appreciate photos and GPS coordinates sent through to us at egmontvc@doc.govt.nz,” said Mr Johnston.

Track assessments and repair could take some time. Trampers are urged to check the DOC website or contact North Egmont Visitor Centre prior to heading outdoors.

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