GRADE 2 TRAILS
Holland Days – Distance: 2.2km | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: This mellow grade 2, 2-way track runs parallel with Te Wairoa road and is the main access track to and from the carpark to all of the trails in the park. This track is 2-way, so please be courteous to other users. Built in stages by everyone in the Southstar Trailcrew between Dec 2015 and April 2016.
Trail name origin: Holland Track – An Example of Serving your Community – The Holland Whanau
The original concept to develop this Waitangi Mountain Bike Park project was proposed to Focus Paihia by husband and wife team, Robin & Tiff Holland. The momentous drive to see this park come to life has been phenomenal. It’s demanded commitment, endurance, determination, passion and mighty big hearts. The journey has brought together so many different strands of our community e.g. tribal custodians, trail builders, engineers, environmentalists, the business sector, charitable groups, local and central government agencies and an army of volunteers. Your children Freya & Thea missed you on days that you were away from home so they also deserve to be honored as well. The Holland Whanau epitomize the words success, high performance, walk the talk, service to the community and humility. Our Focus Paihia Community will always remember the Holland Days.
Holland Days Loop – Distance: 690m single side, 1.4km full loop | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: This part of forest is so beautiful it deserved more than just one single track so this section of Holland Days has been made into a family friendly loop. This two way track is gently flowing, never gaining or losing much altitiude but always keeping you on your toes.
Holland Days XTN – Distance: 400m | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: This is a short link track from the end of Waariki to Bledisloe Rd. Once the Zone 4 trails are approved and built this track will eventually provide a vital entry/exit to and from that zone.
Hua Hill – Distance: 450m | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: Mellow gradient climbing trail that gets you back up to Taane and on up to the top for another lap.
Trail name origin: Hua Hill (Hu-ah Hill)
The word ‘Hua’ is classic Kiwi slang. It’s very similar to another Kiwi slang word ‘Humbug’. The commonality between the two words boils down to mean an activity whereby a person exerts serious feelings of frustration. In this context it may relate to the extra effort required to apply more muscle power when mountain bike climbing HUA HILL. What were you really thinking Steve McManus?
Kahotea Loop – Distance: 4km | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: This is an easy rolling family style loop around a big swamp. The swamp was created by lava flowing from the domes within the park hundreds of years ago. The lava cut off the ends of these valleys so they became swamps. This track is 2-way, so please be courteous to other users. Built by Lloyd Jenks & Rohan Alton of Southstar Trails for Focus Paihia Dec 2015.
Trail name origin: Kahotea Loop (Kah – hor – teh – ah) – Kahotea – White Plume Plant
An original place name. Kahotea is an abbreviation of Kakaho meaning long plant stalk and tea meaning white plume. Therefore, if you ever find yourself surrounded by a grassy plant that has a fluffy white plume on the top of a 2 metre long stalk, you are most likely to be in a place called, Kahotea.
Kiwi Flow – Distance: 1.4km | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: This is the easiest grade 2 descent in the park and is a great trail to take kids on for their first coasting downhill experience (after they have learnt to use their brakes!). Built by Scott Taylor and Johnny Cash of Southstar Trails for Focus Paihia Feb 2016.
Trail name origin: Kiwi Flow (Key – wee) – Flow – The K9 Kiwi Detective
Dear Flow, my K9 friend.
The Sun sets, darkness is my playground. Wake up, yell loud, I claim my territory.
Sharp scratchy claws rip tree logs apart, insect lunch menu.
Soft wetlands, worms underground, get to work long digging beak.
Daylight, retire to my burrow, brown feather camo, dream sleep talk.
Thanks for keeping me safe.
Magic Carpet – Distance: 1.1km | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: A beauty flowing grade 2 downhill track, nice mellow rollers and pump features, along with the odd wallride if you have the pace. This is a great trail for beginner riders to learn descending skills. Built by Ryan Lovet and Martin Connell for Andrew Younger Contracting, Dec 2016.
Trail name origin: Magic Carpet
We are very lucky to have the best teams of mountain bike trail builders in the country. The crew have named this trail MAGIC CARPET. Ride it like a dream and you’ll fly this magic carpet too!
Mokopuna – Distance: 0.8km | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: This track is filled with fun swoopy turns, rollers and little jumps, without much gain or loss of elevation. The perfect place to introduce new comers to mountain biking.
Trail name origin: Mokopuna (Moh – koh – puh – nah) – A Future Version of Self – The Next Generation
As an old Maori warrior with a tattooed face drinks water from a spring, his eye catches a flash of a mirror reflection. Moko = Maori Tattooed Face, Puna = Spring of Water. What does a Maori chief see reflecting in his Grandchildren? A Future Version of Self – The Next Generation. Our Legacies are the Treasures of our Grandchildrens Inheritance.
On the Up – Distance: 930m | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: A climbing trail that provides shelter from the sun and has created a good link when exiting Zone 3, with still a little fuel in the tank for just one more run before heading back to the carpark. This track links up and onto the main Zone 2 Taane’s Climb. Please use this trail rather than Bledisloe Road which is signposted for NO BIKES due to forestry traffic.
Ruarangi – Distance: 2.8km | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: This is the longest descent in the park and is between Kiwi Flow and Tuatara in difficulty. The top half is relatively mellow, but features some great berm corners. The bottom half edges towards grade 3 with faster sections and some tabletop jumps. The big bridge at the bottom of this trail was built with help from the staff and materials from the local ITM store on Haruru Falls Rd. Trail built by Ryan Lovett, Bastian Wenzel, Abe, Scott Taylor, Johnny Cash, Nick Crocker, Lloyd Jenks and Lance Tavinor of Southstar Trails for Focus Paihia.
Trail name origin: Ruarangi (Roo – ah – rah – ng – ee) – Twin Skies – The Lands Prehistoric Name
Soak up the beautiful scenery. In the early morning look into the peaceful eastern horizon. Where the blue above joins the blue below, there you will see the rays of sun shine light up the world, Te Hirihiri o Te Raa. Ruarangi is the name of an old house that once stood on the historic precinct of the Waitangi Treaty Grounds. Many centuries ago, a child named Te Raa was born within this house. It is recited by the grand elders that Te Raa is the founding ancestor of the Ngaati Raahiri tribe. The descendants of Te Raa exist today as caretakers of this land.
Taane’s Climb -Distance: 1km | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: This is the main climbing trail for Zone 2 to get riders back up to the top of the hill, it’s a nice easy consistent gradient for spinning back up. This trail is one-way uphill.
Trail name origin: Taane’s Climb (Tah – neh) – The Maori God Taane Ascends the Heavens to Attain the Sacred Baskets of Knowledge
This story encourages the pursuit of excellence. Taane’s 3 baskets or kete contain pearls of ancient wisdom. Kete Tuaatea holds knowledge relating to the Source of Existence, the Era Beyond Thought, Time and Space. Kete Tuauri is about the Evolution of the Void, the Maori Genesis, Genealogies of all Living Things. Kete Aronui is the Realm of Mankind’s Sense Perceptions, Heaven on Earth, the Present.
Te Raawhiti – Distance: 440m | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: The eastern split of the Zone 3 climbing track takes you back up to the top of Te Ara Kaanihi. The track features a couple of steeper switchbacks and short pinches, but it’s typically rideable for an intermediate rider. Built by Ryan Lovett and Martin Connnell for Andrew Younger Contracting.
Trail name origin: Te Raawhiti (Teh –Raah – fee – tee)
If you are ever lost on land here in Aotearoa an easy way to find your bearings is by looking for TE RAAWHITI, the rising sun. Once you locate east, then just go over the hill, straight for a bit then follow the coastline. You will end up in TE RAAWHITI, a serene place situated in the eastern Bay of Islands.
Te Rangi Hononga – Distance: 2.2km | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: This is the main climbing trail for Zone 3, it starts down by the swamp and climbs gently up towards Te Puke Rd, where it splits. The western split heads towards the summit and tracks, as well as a link into Zone 5. There are some amazing views from the top.
Trail name origin: Te Rangi Hononga (Teh – Rah – ngee – Hor – nor – ngah)
When you reach the top of this uphill ride try and develop a special feeling and connection to the land. Whilst you are in that state of mind ask for the blessings of the ancestors who dwell in TE RANGI HONONGA, a place where the spirits gather in the heavenly skies.
Tuatara – Distance: 1.5km | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: This is the first trail built in the Waitangi MTB Park, it’s a little harder than Kiwi Flow, so beginners ride that trail first. This is a brakes off fun fast descent using the full height available in the park. Built by Rohan Alton & Scott Taylor of Southstar Trails for Focus Paihia Oct 2015.
Trail name origin: Tuatara (Two – ah – tah – rah) – Native Spiny Back Reptile
The Tuatara once walked with giant Dinosaurs. Its longevity to live to an age of up to 100 years is why it is acknowledged as an accumulator of knowledge and a wise master of the physical and spiritual realms. Maori Priests of the Highest Order with well developed psychic abilities had a deep intrinsic connection to the Tuatara as, like man, it has a third eye of its own.
Waaraki – Distance: 2.4km | Grade 2 – Easy
Trail Description: Take in the stunning views of the Bay of Islands as you huss down this 2.4km trail littered with perfect cupping berms and rollers that have you floating and popping all the way down. It is one of the longest downhill runs in the park and you can reach speeds of up to 40 kmph. Built by Ryan Lovet and Martin Connell for Andrew Younger Contracting Feb 2017.
Trail name origin: Waaraki (Waah – rah – kee )
Whakapapa is of primary importance to Maori. It represents a layer of generations upon another layer. Reciting your genealogy or whakapapa is a way of acknowledging your ancestral lineage, blood lines and kinship ties to close family relatives. For example, in the early 1800’s a chief named Waaraki once resided upon these lands where the trees stand within the Waitangi Endowment Forest. Waaraki’s ancestry connected him to many famous Bay of Island tribes or hapu such as Ngai Tahuhu, Ngati Awa, Ngati Tautahi, Ngai Tawake, Ngati Pou, Ngati Hineira, Ngati Rangi and many others. However, despite his close affiliations to all these strong and noble tribes, Waaraki secured his seniority in Waitangi via the status of his grandfather Kauteawha who was a well known Waitangi chief of the Ngati Rahiri tribe.
GRADE 3, 4, 5 TRAILS
Bon Appetit – Distance: 780m | Grade 4 – Advanced
Trail Description: Bon Appetit is A warm salutation before someone is about to eat – this trail being a riders feast, prepared for us by Southstar’s talented French trail builder, Gabriel Tebib. It features some tight switch backs to start before opening out into more grade 4 advanced descending.
Down and Out – Distance: 820m | Grade 3 – Intermediate
This track was built to provide an intermediate grade 3 alternative to the last 1/3 of the Grade 2 Ruarangi Track. It features some of the best linking berms in the park, it’s really fun to drive hard through the turns and spring into the next one like a skier/snowboarder.
Basically this track runs you Down and Out, but its name is something you’ll certainly never be if you are in the WMBP!
Hookioi – Distance: 1km | Grade 4 – Advanced
Trail Description: This grade 4 trail built by Gab Tebib of Southstar Trails, has some never-before seen features, such as the ‘Dirt Skinny’ and ‘Gab’s knobs’ these moon shaped humps can be rolled, or doubled or tripled. Trail Designer Jeff Carter named this his favourite track in the park after his first run down “there are lots of features, but everything flows together really nicely, and I came out the bottom hooting and hollering!”
Trail name origin: Hookioi (Hor – kee – or – ee)
This red feather chested giant bird with a 6 meter wing span is said to have been the largest eagle to ever live, the Haast Eagle. A dinosaur like predator that dominated the skies of Aotearoa, it initially hunted adult Moa which were 2 meters tall. Swooping down and attacking with force, the HOOKIOI would first stun or shock its target with a haunting scream then dig its tiger sharp claws to into its prey. Once it had a firm grip it would then rise up hundreds of meters like a helicopter and then drop its casualty which died on impact. Eventually it started feasting on humans. Maori ancestors were in awe of this killing machine. Its greatest ability was having radar vision that enabled it to hunt under the cover of darkness. Hence why the first International Maori rugby team put on the black jersey, to absorb the fierce warrior qualities of the HOOKIOI.
Kao Kao Chaos – Distance: 2.2km | Grade 3 – Intermediate
Trail Description: This fast intermediate trail features lots of hips, jumps and rollers. Built by Scott Taylor and Gaby Tebib of Southstar Trails for Focus Paihia Feb 2016
Trail name origin: Kao Kao Chaos (Kah – or – Kah – or) – Beware The Spirit of Kao Kao
Multitudes have perished to ultimately cross the sacred veil which separates life from death. Only untouchable memories hidden in the land to remember them by. Respect the land and the land shall respect you. The wise ones will heed these words, those who ignore the warning shall pay the price. Beware the Spirit of Kao Kao.
Kune Kune – Distance: 1.2km | Grade 3 – Intermediate
Another stand-out trail for zone 3, built by Scott Taylor & Cameron Dodd Dec 2016, Scott’s 18 months of trail building experience with Southstar Trails have culminated in what he considers his best trail yet “I’ve put the digger in places I never thought it could go to get this trail in, I’m really proud of it”. The best turn on the trail is down in the native gully where you can get super high on the natural clay wall and swoop down through the corner generating huge speed for the next section. There’s also a sneaky triple roller near the end that Scott challenges you to go for the triple jump on.
Trail name origin: Kune Kune (Coo – neh – coo – neh )
Highly prized by Maori, a KUNEKUNE is a rare pig breed introduced to Aotearoa within the last 200 years. The word kunekune simply means plump which helps us to identify this pigs distinctive characteristics i.e. short-legs with a round appearance. Its lower jaw tassels also makes it unique. At the bottom of this mountain bike trail is Taro Rd. This is a place where Maori were known to harvest Polynesian taro to feed their KUNEKUNE.
Ngaa Puhi Challenge – Distance: 1.4km | Grade 4 – Advanced
Trail Description: This is the most challenging track built as part of the first stage of the Waitangi MTB Park. Built by Ryan Lovett and Johnny Cash of Southstar Trails November 2015.
Trail name origin: Ngaa Puhi Challenge (Ngah – puh – hee) – Ngaa Puhi – The Tribe of Fierce Warriors
With subtropical climate, volcanic soil, fresh water springs, large Kauri forests, sandy gold beaches, mineral hot pools, rich sea life and scenes of paradise, many drool with envy for the Northern lands. Forever on guard is the battle hardened Ngaa Puhi tribe – The Tribe of Fierce Warriors. For those daring to challenge Ngaa Puhi’s territorial status, prepare to fight to the death.
Pakonga – Distance: 830m | Grade 4 – Advanced
Trail Description: Hell-yea! Big tabletop jumps will have you learning to scrub, whip and turndown in no-time. Even though this is grade 4 trail, all the jumps are rollable and we suggest you roll down slowly first run, check the jumps out and then do a few runs gradually going bigger landing on the tops of the tables, until you are successful in back-siding the landings – that’s when this trail really starts to flow together. Built by Lloyd Jenks, Charlie Makea, Scott Taylor & Cameron Dodd of Southstar Trails, Feb 2017.
Trail name origin: Pakonga (Pah – kor – ngah)
A name found in the lands historic record “Pakonga”. Translated as a loud bang similar to that of a shot gun being fired off. When riding down this Grade 4 trail, imagine a mad man pointing his shot gun with 2 smoking barrels, this will give you crazy courage to handle this high intensity track.
Te Ara Kaanihi – Distance: 1.4km | Grade 3 – Intermediate
Trail Description: This is an awesome grade 3 flow style track with tabletop jumps, hips and rollers. It starts off of Tuatara and ends near the bottom of Bledisloe Rd. Built by Lloyd Jenks and Gaby Tebib of Southstar Trails for Focus Paihia in March 2016.
Trail name origin: Te Ara Kaanihi (Teh – ah – rah – kah – nee – hee)
An ancient place name that has survived the ravages of time, Te Ara Kaanihi. Of strategic value is its high peak feature. Imagine warriors standing above on alert scouting the land and sea for intruders or trespassers. The network of pathways connecting to this vantage point is a clue to understanding the meaning of its name, Te Ara Kaanihi – The Woven Cross Roads.
Te Aranga Hou – Distance: 630m | Grade 4 – Advanced
Trail Description: This high speed grade 4 descent has plenty of features to keep you entertained on multiple runs. There’s lots of jumps to try for, and plenty of hips to practice your tail whips. If you’re easily clearing all the jumps on Te Ara Kaanihi then graduate to this trail and keep improving. Mostly built by Gab Tebib and finished by Lloyd Jenks for Southstar Trails Jan 2017.
Trail name origin: Te Aranga Hou (Teh – Ah – rah – ngah – Ho)
Words are a powerful expression of the mind, heart and soul. Within both the Maori oral traditions and written literature there are great prophecies which speak of the vast potential that exists within the people of today’s time era. Te Aranga Hou means The New Pathway – Awaken Light Being to seek inner peace, earth healing, unification of the rainbow races and a return to our Creators divine unconditional love.
Te Corner – Distance: 980m | Grade 5 – Expert
Trail Description: The first expert level grade 5 track to be built in the Waitangi MTB Park, this track is much steeper than other tracks in the park. It features drops, gap jumps, and steep dropping banked turns. Compared with other grade 5 trails around NZ, there’s not a huge amount of vertical height available in the Waitangi MTB Park, so the track is all over quicker than a teenager on prom night. That being said it’s still a really enjoyable trail and worth the climb up! For the first run down we suggest you go slowly and check out all the jumps before boosting a full speed run.
Trail name origin: Te Corner
Life seems easy when you’re young. As you get older more and more twists and turns appear. The adventure is full of ups and downs and after travelling a long, straight and narrow road finally turning a huge bend in TE CORNER generally tends to accelerate greater periods of growth and heightened awareness. Don’t hold back on this exhilarating Grade 5 ride, let the adrenaline pump thru your veins. ALL YOURS RIO, SMASH IT BRO!
Waitangi Roller Coaster – Distance: 890m | Grade 3 – Intermediate
Trail Description: Are you ready to scream? Are you ready to feel the G-forces? Roll up and prepare to enter the Waitangi Roller Coaster. If you’re not hollering when you roll out then check yourself into a mental asylum right now – this track is one of the most awesome in the park! It’s an evolution of both fun and swooping rolls from the Grade 3’s in Zone 2. A big thanks to Scott Taylor and Cameron Dodd from Southstar Trails for creating this masterpiece trail.
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About the Track Grading System
Make sure you choose a track to match your skills, fitness and the experience you are after. Most tracks are more difficult when wet, avoid riding in the mud and rain. Ride within your limit.
Standard: Mostly flat with some gentle climbs on smooth track with easily avoidable obstacles such as rocks and potholes. We currently have 7 tracks rated Grade 2 which range from 0.8km to 4km in distance.
Standard: Steep slopes and/or avoidable obstacles possibly on narrow track and/or with poor traction. There may be exposure at the track’s outside edge. We currently have 2 tracks rated Grade 3 that are 1.4km and 2.2km in distance.
Standard: A mixture of long, steep climbs, narrow track, poor traction and obstacles that are difficult to avoid or jump over. Generally exposed at the track’s outside edge. Most riders will find some sections easier to walk. At present we have 1 track rated advanced.
Standard: Technically challenging. Giant climbs, narrow track and numerous hazards including dangerous drop-offs, sharp corners and difficult obstacles. Expect walking and possibly bike carrying.
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