Last Updated:

799 - 836 Pirongia Base Camp

masonbee Te Araroa

Woke up this morning to news of earthquakes in the South Island. Everybody I know seems to be OK but no news has come out of the Richmond Ranges yet.

One person I have walked with said that she was thrown from her bed on the 7th floor of a hostel in Wellington and, at the time of posting, was sitting on a hill sipping rum in case of Tsunamis.

I didn't feel it although others in Hamilton said they did.

Good time to be heading south. :)

About half of the walking today was road walking which wasn't so good but the other half made up for it.

The Taitua Arboretum was a nice break (very many chickens) but the best part was the last piece of the Waipa Walk which went up through limestone hills with craggy cliffs, great views, and then down through some great forest.

Currently I am ensconced in my tent at what I am calling Pirongia Base Camp with the rain gently falling. It is only 4 - 6 hours to the hut at the summit so hopefully there will be enough of a break in the weather  in the morning.

Probably have a rest day at the hut. This will be the first time my hut pass will have been used. The first of many times I hope.


  • I noticed that although there weren't very many T.A. markers heading into Hamilton there were quite a few heading out.
  • There is decent water at the Taitua Arboretum by the toilets.
  • The gate onto the farm from Old Mountain Road is quite hard to find. Its just on you left as you go over the ridge.
  • When you get to the start of Pirongia don't camp down by the road like we did. If you walk for half an hour up the track there is a large campsite.

Pirongia Map

View Larger Topographic Map