Wednesday Walkers



A walking group go on day walks within two hours driving from Oamaru each Wednesday.

 You are welcome to join us for the day and no membership is required.

Trip information can be sent to your email address by Tuesday, the day before the trip. If you wish to go on this email list please send your email address to stating your wish to be included in the mail out.

Unless otherwise notified trips will leave at 8-30 am each Wednesday from outside the  Towey  St. tennis courts,  Oamaru . You are  welcome to just turn up to be included in that days trip, though be aware that there is the very odd cancellation or time alteration.

See down further under Group Skills and Day Gear Checklist for some things to be aware of on the walk and a recommendation of what to bring.

View Map

Recent Walks

Balmoral Hut to Kakanui River

Wednesday 30 November 2022

Not the Round Yards


Weather: Started overcast and mild; turned south-westerly with increasingly heavy rain in afternoon.

Permission: Greg Andrew, NZ Carbon Farming Group Ben Douglas, Dome Hills Station Lachlan Kingan, Balmoral Run 

Travel: 49 Km;

Trampers: 20 

Trip:  The intention had been to do a trip we had not done for three years: starting from the former Hazeldean yards on Balmoral Road, down to the old round stone yards on the north branch of the Kakanui River, then either up the river itself or over a hill track to the south, and finally climbing a track coming out just above the Balmoral Huts. It had the added interest of passing through land that had been planted in trees as part of a carbon farming project. However, the weather forecast was not promising: fine in the morning but starting to rain at midday and becoming heavy as the afternoon wore on.  In light of this, it was decided to do a there-and-back trip to the river, which could be extended if weather permitted. The track chosen for this was the western one on the grounds that it was more of a known quantity than the eastern track, some of which was over what was now destocked pasture.

So all six vehicles – two 4WDs and four cars – drove to the Balmoral Huts, the last 200 metres of the road to which was largely ungravelled clay. We set off walking to the west at around 10am, initially up a gentle slope until the track divided where we took the left branch leading to a gully to the south. Shortly after passing a pair of old rail wagon frames, the track began to descend more steeply and, at about 10.30, we stopped for morning tea at a point which offered good views down to the main valley.

From this point, the track zig-zagged steeply down to the valley floor where it crossed a stream and ran beside it for one km or so to the river, which we reached at 11.30. Weather was still holding, but the sky to the north-west was not looking brilliant. After a discussion, eleven decided to stop there for lunch and then climb back up. The remaining nine crossed the river – it was shin deep with a clear bottom and some linked up in threes – and started up the track on the south side.  Just on 12 noon, it started to drizzle so we stopped, ate lunch, donned raingear, and started back down. The rain remained relatively light as we crossed back over the river and started up the lower part of the valley but it increased in intensity as we started to climb.  Before long, the track became a series of rivulets and visibility closed in.  By the time we reached the hut – just on 2pm – it was bucketing down and the early returnees were sheltering under its collapsed verandah.

Duntroon A2o & Road circuit

Wednesday 23 November 2022

The WWW had  a sudden change of plans, when Jane S rang us at Towey St, to say a helicopter was spraying in the area we had planned to walk. 
A decision was made to head for Duntroon- A2O. 18 of us walked up the valley in blustery conditions  to Priests Rd, up it until Racecourse Rd, where ‘eventually’ the perfect lunch spot was located ? 
 ~15km later, after a brief circuit of Duntroon [apart for 3 who found the ‘Flying Pig’] we reached our cars. A number of others found ‘Enfield.’

Mt Charles to Waianakarua

16 November 2022

22 walkers made the short drive to Herbert Cemetery for our yearly walk over to Waianakarua hill – this time starting from the cemetery. Cloudy warmish day – good tramping weather.
Started with the steep paddock down to the west – better going down than up as usual! Along parallel to the Main Rd to Finlayson Rd then up to the little house at the end of the road and the tricky gate into the next property.
From this gate down towards the Main Rd and along below the face of the hill to the intersection with Waianakarua Rd. Following the line of this road along an open grassy track led us to the old and derelict cottage which some of our team pushed through the undergrowth to go into. It was still old and derelict.
From here we climbed uphill via a nice grassy road to a fenceline which took us along the top of the escarpment back towards Finlayson Rd. Found a lovely lunch spot looking south over Waianakarua and beyond.
Keeping to the south of the fence, back to Finlayson Rd and down to a gate taking us up to a well formed farm track to Double Hill Rd and back to the cemetery. About 10km in total.

Ashlands Road to South Peak

Wednesday 9 November 2022

Weather: Fine, clear, mild.

Permission: Philip Nicholson (439 4756)

Travel: 43 Km;

Trampers: 21

Trip:  Ashlands Road turns to the right off SH1 at the end of the first straight south of Hampden. We parked in the grassy area between the end of Ashlands Road and the Ngutukaka Creek and started walking at about 9.30am through the gate immediately to the left of the entrance to the farm yard. This route took us alongside the creek, through another couple of gates and turned right across a culvert into a paddock which, inter alia, accommodated a shooting range. On the other, north-western, side of the paddock we climbed a track up on to a ridge which ran south west above the Ngutukaka valley. About an hour after starting off, we came to a rocky spur, featuring a picture frame hole, which offered an interesting morning tea spot where we could see the route up to our destination, South Peak.

After smoko, we followed the track as it descended gently from the spur and swung right across a broad, grassy saddle to a gate which opened on to the clay track heading straight up the hill. At this point, one tramper turned back and some stripped off, as it was getting warm and in preparation for the climb ahead. This went up a 4wd clay track which took a fairly direct, and therefore steep, line up a ridge through scrub in the lower part and plantation eucalypts further up. The climb initially went straight up then veering to the right before reaching, at a gateway, a forestry road which we turned left on to. Two of the party stopped before this point. As we got higher up, the road forked and we took the right branch, recalling from a previous trip that the left branch had seemed to and did offer a more direct route to the top, but by means of a scramble, sometimes between the edge of the pine forest and the surrounding gorse and other times pushing through pure gorse. After some further ups and downs, we eventually met up with and turned left on to the extension of Baghdad Road which carried on around the west side of South Peak to a locked gate just by the junction with the track down to Pigeon Bush. Six stopped for lunch at this point.

The remaining twelve climbed up the clear, steep track towards South Peak, through manuka, gorse and pine trees, and then more gradually through grass and rocks. As we went we left markers to aid our return. At the summit we settled down for lunch. It was now 12.45 The cloud was light, the sun was warm and the view stunning – from Razorback  inland, over the Horse Range to the Waikouaiti volcanic cones, south to the Otago peninsula, then working up the coast to Shag Point, Katiki Beach, Moeraki and Cape Wanbrow

After about half an hour, it was time to move. We descended to the barrier across the top of Baghdad Road and retraced our steps to the top of the initial steep climb, just below the eucalypt block, where we turned right through a gate on to another track. This descended steeply into a gully, climbed up on to a grassy plateau, then zigged down into another gully between some striking limestone cliffs. At the bottom of this gully, the track climbed again – steeply this time – on to a broad grassy saddle a few hundred metres south of our morning route. We climbed southward up the gentle slope to a gate, then followed a grassy track down the valley of the Ngutukaka Creek. To our right reared steep, craggy limestone cliffs carved by weather into a variety of intriguing shapes. To our left, five huge boulders rose out of the bush like the sculptures on Mount Rushmore in the USA. Eventually, our path crossed the creek as the valley narrowed. A forecast shower arrived at this point, but quickly passed.  We soon came back out on to the shooting range, from where we retraced our morning route across and then down beside the creek to reach the cars just on 4 o’clock. The day had offered a good workout, some striking landscapes and great views.


Wednesday 2 November 2022

The day looked OK until late in the afternoon so we took the chance of walking the Swampy circuit, starting at the Leith Saddle on the Northern motorway into Dunedin. A 600m walk along Waitati Valley Road took us the the track entrance and after a short climb we joined the Pipeline track, part of the Rustlers Ridge Track, which as usual was quite muddy in places.

Upon reaching the Burns track we turned up it and stopped for morning tea when we found a dry sunny glade. Burns track climbs steeply and then levels out before crossing the steep valley of Burns Creek, eventually rejoining the Rustlers Ridge Track.
It was then continuing up until it started to level out where  we emerged from the bush and we were able to get good views of Blueskin Bay behind us. As it was 12-30pm and there was some shelter from the steady NW wind we stopped for lunch about 800m short of the Swampy Summit road.

The vegetation was mainly tussock and hebes up here and upon reaching the road we turned left, passing the high point of the walk shortly after. We continued to the end of the road with views of the Silverpeaks  and Mosgiel, passing several communication and navigating structures that seem essential for modern human existence. After passing the track to Flagstaff we came to the start of the Leith Saddle Track with tall dracophyllum and  a deeply rutted track to navigate at the start of this downhill section. A hazy Dunedin could be seen in the distance to our right and Mt. Cargill was straight ahead.

About halfway down we entered the cloud forest  and the track improved to a wide graveled and stepped  pathway. The unique Kawaka, or NZ cedar trees gradually grew in size as we descended and Mary pointed out other plants unique  to this special patch of NZ bush.

We reached our cars about 3-30pm just as the wind turned a cold southerly. After a 10k long and 400m high climb, most happily stopped at the Maheno Tavern for refreshments and debrief.


Group Skills

We sometimes walk in places where it is easy to get lost, or fog comes in unexpectedly.
* Always follow the leaders instructions.  STAY WITH YOUR GROUP.
* Keep in view of someone with a two way radio. (Note that we carry several 2 way radios and also a Personal Locator Beacon for emergencies.)
* If you think you are lost or unsure where to go, eg. A fork in the track or reduced visibility such  as fog, STAY PUT. Make yourself visible with a bright article. Call out or blow your whistle. 09-9 First aid practise Someone will look for you.
* Always let someone know if you are going off the track eg. Toilet stop or photo shoot.
* Look behind frequently to keep the person behind you in view, and also to know where you have  walked in case you need to go back.
* The person who opens a gate should close it, or designate someone else who knows how, to do so.  Leave all gates as you find them.

Day Gear Check List

The following should be carried with you, no matter how nice the weather is when you leave. Day pack, boots, socks plus a dry pair in the vehicle, water/wind-proof coat with hood, over-trousers, shorts and long johns or long trousers, thermal singlet, shirt, warm jersey/jacket, gloves/mitts, warm hat, sun hat. NO COTTON OUTER GARMENTS PLEASE. This includes jeans as they contribute to hypothermia when wet. Sunglasses, lunch, snacks/emergency rations, full water bottle, sun block, first aid kit, toilet paper, torch, map, compass, whistle, survival sheet/bag, a bright piece of equipment or clothing. Optional  Gaiters, camera, walking sticks, spare clothes in the vehicle.

160 Wednesday  Walkers  Walks

If you have a walk you would like to do, please suggest it at next weeks walk.

ABC Caves


Anderson Lagoon – Shag River

Ashlands Rd. – Kemp Rd. Katiki

Aviemore – Mt. Dryburgh

Awakino Ski Field

Awamoko Stream

Balmoral Huts

Ben Ledi

Ben Lomond

Ben Ohau

Benmore Walkway

Benmore Peak

Big Ben

Big Kuri Creek

Bike rides

Black Cap – Scout Hill

Bobbys Head – Pleasant River

Borland Lodge

Boundary Creek

Canyon Creek

Cave Hill

Central Otago Rail Trail

Chinamans Hut

Chinamans Cave

Clear Stream


Conical Peak

Deep Stream

Devils Bridge Cave

Devils Elbow

Doctors Point

Dome Hills

Domett Loop

Douglas (Rob & Sue)


Elephant Hill

Evensdale Glen

Flannagans Pass

Fox Peak

Freehold Creek

Gentle Annie Hut

Gibson Farm Walk

Glenthorn Station

Gunns Bush

Golf Course, Waianakarua

Government Hill


Gunns Bush

Hamilton Hill

Hampden / Moeraki

Hampden Township

Hillgrove Farm Walk

Herbert Forest

Heywards Point

Island Cliff

Island Stream Waterfall

Kakanui Peak

Kakanui – All Day Bay

Karitane Walkway

Kauru Hill – Fuchsia Creek

Kawairua  Station

Kettleholes, Omarama

Kurow Hill, Awakino Gorge

Kurinui Reserve

Lindis Pass / Dalrachney

Little Domett

Livingstone, Beaties Hill

Loman Run

Maerewhenua Gold Diggings

Moana Station

Moeraki Lighthouse

Moeraki walkway


Mt. Alexander

Mt. Alexander Loop

Mt. Bitterness

Mt Cargill

Mt Cook (Not the Summit)

Mt Dalgety

Mt. Dasher

Mt. David

Mt. Difficulty – Allan Rd

Mt Difficulty – Dasher

Mt. Difficulty – Hectors

Mt. Domett

Mt. Dryburgh

Mt. Evelyn

Mt. Fortune

Mt. Grayson

Mt Kirkliston

Mt. Kohurau

Mt Kyeburn

Mt. Mary, Trig J

Mt. Meyer

Mt Michael

Mt Milne

Mt. Miserable

Mt Nessing

Mt. Nimrod (Haka)

Mt Nimrod (East)

Mt Nobler

Mt. Obi

Mt Orr

Mt. Parker

Mt. Peel (Little)

Mt. Pisgah

Mt. Stalker

Mt Studholme

Mt. Sutton, Ohau

Mt Sutton, Waitangi

Mt. Trotter

Mts. Trotter & McKenzie

Mt. Watkin

Ngapara Farms Walk

Noondale Reserve

Oamaru Walkways

Obi, Mitchells Hut

Obi, Mt. Stalker

Obi, Shingle Creek

Orbell’s Cave

Otekaike Bridal Track

Otekaike Hill

Peel Forest

Pigeon Bush – Duncan Road

Pigeon Bush – South Peak

Pleasant River, Bobbys Head

Prominent Peak

Puketapu Hill

Pulpit Rock

Quail Burn

Raki’s Table / Tunnel

Raki’s, Belmont, Victoria Hills


Rock & Pillars

Rosella Ridge, Silver Peaks


Round Yards circuit / gorge

Seacliff Reserve

Shag Point

Siberia Hill

Staircase Ridge

Station Peak

Stony Ridge

Suttons Face

Swampy, Leith saddle

Table Top via Wainak  Reserve

Table Top via Herbert Forest

Tapui Farm Walk

Te Huruhuru

Temple – North

Temple – South

The Hays

Timaru Walkways

Trotters Gorge Reserve

Trotters Gorge Trig L

Tokarahi Farmwalk

Waihao Walkway, Hotel circuit

Waimate Gorge


Weston Escarpment

White Horse

Woolshed Creek

Wainono Lagoon

Starting place is the Towey St Tennis Courts (see the  map at the top of this page) usually at 8-30 am  every Wednesday.