Franklin Road – Ananui Falls – Waitawheta hut loop | Closed for Kauri Dieback

  • 2 days loop track
  • Easy/medium

As of writing (March '21) 1/3 of this loop is closed due to Kauri Dieback

A good two day starter tramp through regenerating bush and young kauri stands. A waterfall some hill climbing and a popular large hut some small creek and river crossings with lots of early history to interest.

Franklin Road – Ananui Falls – Waitawheta hut loop | Closed for Kauri Dieback: Key information
Walking time
2 days
10 hr – 12 hr
Loop track
Loop track
Long first day with an easy second day out Grades explained
No bookings — open access
No — open access
Franklin Road – Ananui Falls – Waitawheta hut loop | Closed for Kauri Dieback: Find it
Franklin Road
Franklin Road
160m – 540m
Altitude change 380m


From Franklin Rd car park a short walk down the road and then across farm land via a well marked track over agreed access to a gate at the start of the park. Once through the gate a sign indicates the start of the kauri loop walk. Turn here and cross the Waitawheta River at this point easily passable in all but extreme weather.

From here, the track is closed due to Kauri Dieback. All markers are removed.

A short climb ensues to about 400 metres and about 1 and a half hours after leaving Franklin road you reach a sign posted junction with the Bluff stream track. Turning left continue on to Ananui falls another 2 ½ hours. A good place to stop for lunch the top of the falls can be accessed but care should be exercised as it is a rather abrupt drop.

After lunch descend to the Waitengaue valley about 40 mins. Along the way there are a couple points at which the falls can be viewed Pay attention on the descent there are a number young Northern Rata beside the track which are a delight to see flowering early in the year. A bit of a surprise as these are like candy to possums and the Kaimais have their fair share of possums.

From here, the track is open and accessible:

Arriving at the Waitengaue stream cross and proceed by a well marked track upstream over the ridge and down to Waitawheta hut about 3 ½ hours from the crossing.


After a night at Waitawheta hut it’s a short 3 ½ hour easy walk down a well graded track alongside the Waitawheta River back to Franklin road carpark. This part of the walk is very popular with everybody from school groups through families to travellers looking for a back country experience. The hut sleeps about 30 in two rooms with plenty of space to camp on the grass outside if you choose. Several new swing bridges have cut the number of wet crossings of the Waitawheta river to zero, it's possible to do the entire tramway with dry boots!

The walk offers a chance to get a taste for tramping while passing through forests in various states of regenerative growth. Hard enough to get a pleasant feeling of achievement interesting enough to wet the appetite for future adventures.


This track needs a photograph.
ID 5104

About this track

Added 6 March 2010 by bigpaulbigpaul. 3 revisions, most recently 22 March 2021 by CanDoCantabCanDoCantab.
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