Bike Ride: Waitawa Regional Park, Kawakawa Bay, Auckland

THINGS TO KNOW BEFORE YOU GO:

Location: 2585, 1168 Clevedon-Kawakawa Rd, Kawakawa Bay, Auckland 2585

Parking: Yes, there is a parking area designated to Mountain Bikers, however the tracks are also accessible from other spots around the park.

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Toilets: Yes, there are toilets dotted around the park

Dogs: Yes, dogs are allowed on the park at all times on a leash. Dogs are not allowed on the campground and where there are stock in paddocks. Dogs are permitted off leash on the beaches but must be under control. I will be taking my dog back here to explore some of the walks the park has to offer.

Date: 24.02.2018

Weather Conditions: Hot, Sunny

Distance: In total, we travelled 8.18km and this included the Sheepish track, Valley loop track, Pancake portion of the track and the Oyster Shell before returning to the carpark via the Valley Exit track.

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Time Required: We spent an hour and a half here, however there was still so much more to explore.

Final Rating: ★★★★☆

IN MY BACKPACK

1.2L bottle of water. Lots of benches to stop for picnics!

THE RIDE

The ride begins at the Mountain Bike carpark, which has lots of options depending on your skill level. There are easy, intermediate and advanced tracks that start at the carpark. We chose to do a longer easier ride today, so we went down the easy track aptly named ‘Sheepish’. It is pretty steep, but you can get some good speed for the upcoming practically vertical hill!

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Down the long sweeping hill, you come to an intersection where you can choose to go left or straight. Left takes you back up the valley loop, and straight takes you along ‘pancake’. The ‘pancake’ track takes you back to the park entrance and there are more options from there. We went both ways and experienced most of the tracks in this area.

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The Oyster Shell track was my least favourite as the track is made of loose gravel which when combined with the dryness was quite slippery.

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Some parts of the track are a bit overgrown, however overall its a great track and it was very quiet. I wonder if a lot of people don’t even know its there!

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We all agreed that this track is like a mixture of Totara Park & Waiuku Forest. There are parts of the track that are open farm land, and then parts which are tight Mountain Bike tracks. Overall, I really enjoyed this regional park and look forward to exploring more and taking my dog through some of the walks. The park also has a nice bay, so it would be nice after a hot day of mountain biking or walking to pop in for a swim!

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