Clevedon Scenic Reserve, Camp Sladdin, Auckland
THINGS TO KNOW BEFORE YOU GO:
Location: End of Thorps Quarry Road, Clevedon, Auckland, 2582
Parking: Yes, plenty of parking
Toilets: Yes, at the car park
Shoes: I wore my hiking boots, however most of the walkers I passed were wearing sneakers.
Date Walked: 29 January 2017
Weather Conditions: Hot, sunny, dry
Distance: 3.5 km
Time Required: According to the signs, it is 60 minutes to summit, and 60 minutes return. I did the whole walk in slightly over an hour, walking at my usual pace. This also included taking pictures and stopping at the summit.
Final Rating: ★★★★☆
As there are many ways to get to Clevedon – through Whitford / Papakura / Maraetai, simply follow the above map. You cannot miss the Scenic Reserve at the end of the road.
IN MY BACKPACK
In my bag, I had one 1.5 L water bottle, sunscreen and my camera.
The walk begins in the car park, from here you walk down a short road past the toilets and the camp sites.
Following the road a little further, there is a sign to show you which way to head depending on which track you would like to take. Shortly after the sign, you can see the bridge which takes you over the small creek up to the start of the walks.
Prior to the bridge, there is a nice picnic table off to the right. Passing over the bridge, I followed the track up to the below sign, and from here decided I would like to go and check out Old Thorp’s Quarry, which was only a two-minute walk away.
Up at Old Throp’s Quarry, there is a lovely board walk which leads to two separate picnic areas. Because this walk is not far from the car, I can imagine this would be a perfect spot for a picnic.
Heading back down the track, I had two options to start my walk to the summit. Over the bridge on my right, or up the stairs on my left. Just as I was about to start my walk, another lady with her dog headed up the stairs on my left. I decided to head to the right, and began the climb.
Just up the first set of stairs, there is a sign, right to the summit (60 minutes) or left onto a loop track (30 minutes). I chose right to the summit, and the incline continued. I would say a reasonable level of fitness is required for this track, as the majority of it is up stairs, or over tree roots. These are typical DOC stairs, where one is as high as your knee and then the next is so low it may as well have not even been there!
After around 35 minutes of climbing, I came to a bench on my left, which would be a nice place to stop and catch your breath. I carried on, as I knew I was almost at the top!
Soon after, I could see the bushes above thinning into day light, and I found myself at the summit. I am glad I did this walk on a lovely sunny day, as the views were amazing!
After catching my breath, I began the walk back down to the car park. I took the opposite track on my way back, however you can go back down the same way. Going down was slightly easier than going up, although some sets of stairs are rather steep.
Just before the end of the walk, I came to the viewing platform shown below, which had a lovely kauri tree and some information next to it.
Past the kauri tree, it is just a short walk down a few stairs to the start of the walk. I then headed back over the bridge, to the car park.
This walk was defiantly worth doing, and it was a great work out! Sneakers would have been fine to wear, as the path is well-kept. If you are not so great on uneven surfaces, I would recommend heading up to the summit via the track on your left, and returning the same way. The track on the right had a lot of exposed tree roots along the way.