Upper Whirinaki Loop

  • 6 hr 30 min – 8 hr loop track
  • Easy/medium

An Easy two day loop in the Whirinaki Forest park

The Dreaded Ongaonga • By pmcke. Licence: C.
Upper Whirinaki Loop: Key information
Walking time
2 days
6 hr 30 min – 8 hr
Loop track
Loop track
Some creek and river travel watch weather forcasts Grades explained
No bookings — open access
No — open access
Upper Whirinaki Loop: Find it
Plateau Rd Carpark southern end Whirinaki track
Plateau rd carpark
300m – 984m
Altitude change 684m

This track has some great Whirinaki bush with abundant wild life, an easy walk to stretch your legs and a tidy 9 bunk hut for the night.

Upper whirinaki Hut • By bigpaul.


Follow SH5 south of Taupo and turn left onto Pohokura Rd, after crossing a bridge you will see a DOC signpost, turn left here. 

Follow the road and then turn right at the Circuit Rd, Waipunga Rdintersection.

After following this you will see a DOC post with no sign, turn left.

Turn right from Waipunga valley road, following DOC sign.

Left at sign for circuit road

Right on to pine milling road, following doc sign.

Left at doc signpost

You will pass a number of forestry roads on your right, left, left, right, left and right.

Follow the DOC sign to the left.

Straight past forestry road on right x2

Left at fork, ignore road on right

Right at fork

Left at fork in the road

Turn left at sign

Sign for Whirinaki tracks at end of road.

Metal road for about 1-1.5 hours from SH5, 4WD not necessarily a must, but definitely comforting. Keep a map and gps handy as the road signs are few with many forestry roads heading off all over the place.

Day 1:

Plateau Rd Carpark to caves is a graded walking track easy going about 1.5 hours.

About 100 metres upstream is a rather large cave worth visiting. Watch out for blue duck always seem to be a couple in residence. Caves to taumutu stream about 1/2 an hour a continuation of the well graded walking track.

At the junction with Taumutu stream you turn upstream at the wire brige and the track becomes a tramping track following the stream, prepare to get your feet wet, lots of crossings.

Exit the stream at a junction with a track to Mangamate hut and head roughly 1.5 hours south following the taumutu stream to Upper Whirinaki hut set at the back of a reasonable clearing. A relatively easy 3 to 4 hour day.

Day 2:

The next day exit the clearing at the northern end taking the Tehoe track for about 15 minutes to a crossing with the Upper Whirinaki river. The track back to plateau rd starts here climbing quickly to the ridge top and then down to plateau rd. 2.5 to 3 hours.

ID 5712

About this track

Added 21 August 2010 by bigpaulbigpaul. 2 revisions, most recently 9 December 2018 by M400-1M400-1.
68 views in the past year (6 per month).