Canadians in NZ

Hi guys!

I live in Canada, in Quebec City, and i'm leaving today for New-Zeland! Youhou!!! I do kayaking on rivers here and I would to do it in your beautiful country!

I would like to know: is it possible to do kayaking during de winter???? Where are the best places to rent kayak and to guide river? On North Island? On South Island?

Here, each rapid has a degree of difficulty, from 1 to 6 (1=very easy and 6=impossible to do!). Is it the same degrees for you??

Thank you so much !!!

Odile the tourist
(sorry if my english is not so good!)

CJ's picture

I'm Canadian and living in NZ for a bit. Grading of rivers is pretty much the same with the exception of grade 6. It doesn't seem to mean impossible in NZ.

There are lots of places that are great for kayaking - best to get a van and go where the water is. If you want to be based somewhere Roturua or Hokitika would probably be good choices.

If you end up in Auckland you should check out AUCC If you join gear rental is very cheap and there are people going away every weekend.

Hope the trip is going well.


mjmcwhirter's picture

Hi Odile,
I am a new Zealander who used to live in Boston and have kayaked a bit in Quebec over the past years. Grades are pretty similar over there the Tewksbury is grade 4 for both NZers and Quebecois.

There are many many runs that are as remote as the Taureau and similar in terms of difficulty. There are also more dificult runs in NZ.

You've probably worked a lot of this out by now looking at the date of your post.

My suggestion is that you should head to the south island of NZ for kayaking. There is some stuff in the north island but the south is where it is at. Winter kayaking happens all the time in NZ and in fact many rivers only run during winter. It is often cold in NZ but it is never as cold as Quebec/New England during cold times there so you should be sweet. If you take your drysuit you'll be safe compared to all the kiwis who are too dirtbag to buy a drysuit and still use drytops (true eh boyz?).

I myself will be there in a weeks time. how long are you there for. I will probably look to boat and it would be fun to catch up and paddle a bit