Perth / Five Finger Stream to old SH6 bridge site

Info

Class: 
IV
Portage?: 
No
Level: 
40-60 cumecs
Gauge: 

WRC flow phone 083 225 495 for Whataroa Bridge. Take 40% of this for the Perth River.

Gradient: 
18.0m/km
Length: 
0.0km
Time: 
Put in: 
Five Finger Stream
Take out: 
Old SH6 bridge site
Shuttle: 
Helicopter Section 7B or 7C
Maps: 
I35
Character: 
Hot tip: 
Tags: 
Helicopter
The scenery is stunning, the water is blue and the paddling totally absorbing. The lower section from Five Finger Stream has also become one of the established intermediate runs on the Coast.

Relax into class III+ water for a few kilometres past Nolan’s Hut until the gorge. This is a stunning, smooth, schist gorge well worth getting the camera out for. It contains four or five class IV rapids. The Weir is an obvious river-wide waterfall/slide thingy which many people portage. It can be run at most levels.

Once clear of the gorge the confluence with the Whataroa arrives quickly. Six kilometres of leisurely floating, with a couple of surprises, take you down to the old bridge site, carpark, beers and sandflies. Load the car as quickly as possible and head to the Harihari pub for celebrations.

To get to the take out: find the Whataroa River bridge on SH6, turn eastwards on the gravel road on the southern side for 2km to the old bridge site. There is a large parking area, and camping is allowed. Make sure you have a ready stock of insect repellent because the sandflies are rather aggressive.

History: 
Credits: 
Graham Charles
NZ Whitewater 4th Edition 2006: 
p202