DOC Marker Definitions
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It has come to attention recently with quite a number people being lost in the bush with the main reason that they were following the wrong type of triangle marker. As a person who goes tramping quite a bit, I thought that I would explain the different types of triangle markers that you see in the bush. Orange (and possibly a white strip if following an old low use track/route): This is a track marker, this is what you should be following to keep to the track. Generally these will be placed about 30m apart and normally you should be able to see the next one in front (unless the track is clearly defined, such as a track of a great walk standard). Sometimes if going through a large clearing there would be a marker as you exit and one as you enter, which also the same if crossing a river. Tracks can also be marked by cairns or poles above the bush line and alpine areas. Pink/Yellow/Blue: This is not a track marker, don't be confused. These indicate trap/bait lines or actual traps for pest control such as possums & stoats. In a number of cases there will be written information which generally identifies the trap/bait line and a number to identify trap/bait number (sometimes this can also indicate distance from start of the line). Sometimes these lines can follow the track which normally indicate that the trap if just off to the side of the track.
East Wangapeka track in Orongaongas has blue triangle markers and just to keep everything sane has trap lines off the side marked with orange triangles.
Some little used routes are marked with flagging tape, unsure wither it is DOC who does it or 'volunteers'. Red Permolat markers are typically old forest service lines.. When lost, following other types of markers typically would return to the main track or out of the bush eventually. Unless you follow the markers in the wrong direction...
flaging tape etc are tracks that Doc pretends dont exist
as I understand it, Official Public tracks are only marked with Orange plastic triangles or on the tops, standards with an orange top, sometimes DOC pest control tracks can be marked in blue or other colours, but Orange is the National standard for official walking tracks Ex Forest service tracks were usually marked with white Permolat (venetian blind) strips. sometimes painted over ex National park and Reserves usually had red Permolat trips, sometimes mixed with white Also, Round tin lids were used, buy NZFS, tramping clubs and others. some still remain, mostly rusted thru. The pink/blue etc tape can be unofficial tracks made by trampers, hunters. or they could be pest control lines marked by DOC. I gather on the west coast, the Permolat volunteer group use white permolat to mark thracks they maintain. and then there are other hunting/tramping routes marked with anything else to :)
Much of the Karamea gorge route was marked with flagging tape... It is a 'official' DOC route. Other sections did have orange triangle.
I forgot to mention that along with the unofficial markers that others have mentioned - there are also rock formations in the alpine areas called Cairn - These are man made and are just rocks stacked in a pyrmaid shape
I once followed a line of cairns by mistake, the track cut back on us so missed the next marker... but saw a cairn... then another one... So climbed a hill to a nice tarn... uncertain where the cairns were taking us. We were only killing some time in the morning while waiting for others so could not explore further.
Don't you guys ever relocate to maps ?. Not picking on anyone. Not wishing to hi-jack original post. Marker by marker is fine, tho when there's a decent pause, like to see where I am on the map and have an idea of what's coming up/what to look out for.
@Pro-active I use my map and compass while going off track but this is for the beginners to tramping so they may not be well-versed in navigation so will rely mostly on directional markers
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