Taieri / Taioma to Outram (Taieri Gorge)


25 – 200cumecs (50 – 80 optimal play flows)

Otago Regional Council flow phone 03 479 6493, flow at Outram Bridge

2-3 hours
Put in: 
Off Taioma Rd at the Mullocky Stream confluence
Take out: 
Outram Glen
NZ Topo I44, J44
Medium volume river with good playing and fun rapids.
Hot tip: 
Don’t squeeze to hard getting through Bum Rock!
Otago University's answer to stress management. The lower Taieri gorge trip is good whitewater within half an hour of Dunedin.

My first trip on the lower was just after doing the upper and driving all the shuttle. It was bound to be a long day. The locals were more than a little surprised at how fast we went. Their normal runs on the lower Taieri were for playing and took hours. We were off the river in an hour fifteen on the dot. It helped that there was a couple hundred cumecs pushing us downstream and a cold Speights was calling.

The run begins at the Mullocky Stream confluence after an easy 20min walk down a forestry road. Easy water for 1.5km leads to the class III-IV Pipeline Rapid just downstream of the pipeline it takes its name from (original people these kayakers!) At most flows there is enough playing and fun to be had to kill an afternoon of lectures (how time is measured in Dunedin) just in Pipeline. Trinity Rapid is just downstream then another 1.5km to Rock Garden on a right bend beneath a prominent bluff. Bum Rock is a bizarre spot and locals amuse themselves by seeing how many different ways they can paddle through the ‘butt crack' in the rock. Once clear of the smaller Lee Stream rapids you'll wish your playboat was a bit longer as you thrash several kilometres out to the road bridge at Outram.

To get to the put in: From Dunedin get yourself to Mosgiel on SH87 then continue towards Outram for 4.5km. Turn right on Tirohanga Rd, then left after 3km onto Taioma Rd. The road climbs steeply, then descends (yep, steeply) into Mullocky Stream after about 6km. Just up the other side (steeply) is a road and obvious turn out. The gate across the road is locked. Park clear of the road. Portage about 1.5km down this road and look out for a track/old road on the left leading down to the river.

To get to the take out: Return to SH87 and continue about 5km to the Outram Bridge. There are egress points on either side of the river. The river right side cuts a few hundred metres off the trip.

Graham Charles
NZ Whitewater 4th Edition 2006: