Access

Access to rivers, touring and trip reports, recreational releases, river usage.

Major slip affects Shotover access

(23 October) QLDC advises that Skippers Road has re-opened (/ht kayakjb). (14 September) Access to the upper Shotover river sections has been disrupted by a major road slip at Devil's Elbow (map). Queenstown Lakes District Council is undertaking urgent work to restore access and hopes to reopen the road by mid-October, weather permitting. Photo: Courtesy QLDC.

Whakapapa no-take day Saturday 22 September cancelled

Genesis Energy have advised that due to low flows the Whakapapa recreational release scheduled for this Saturday (22nd September 2012) has been cancelled due to low flows. As no rain is forecast over the weekend, the decision has also been made to cancel the back-up day of Sunday 23rd September.

Update on Aratiatia access

Whitewater NZ Access Officer Matt Bennett has been following up on the Aratiatia situation and provides the following update:

Last month a group of kayakers including Ben Brown and other Red Bull athletes were unable to kayak at Aratiatia. The group initially paddled the lower section of the Aratiatia rapids on the Waikato River. It was a warm up run and their intention was to scout the full rapid and paddle it on the next release.

Police prevent Aratiatia descent

Ben Brown reports that yesterday police prevented a group of kayakers from running the Aratiatia rapid on the Waikato river. The Police are presumably enforcing clause 3.9.1(d) in the Waikato Regional Council Navigation Safety Bylaw (PDF, 1.3MB) that states, "Not operate any vessels (other than for maintenance purposes) within 200 metres of the Taupo gates and hydro dam structures on the Waikato River." (PDF, 1.3MB). This rule has not been enforced on kayakers on Aratiatia before now and the rapid has been increasingly paddled since the first descent in 1998. Kayakers intending to descend Aratiatia can try submitting a "Bylaw exemption application form" to obtain an exemption from clause 3.9.1(d). Note the $125.00 fee.

Temporary access prohibition on the Wairoa River, Nelson

A temporary "reservation" of a portion of the Wairoa River, Nelson, has been granted for tree-felling and overhead cable recovery of the logs across the river. All activities including but not limited to swimming, wading, angling, or boating of any kind not directly associated with the logging will be prohibited.

The temporary reservation applies between 05:30 and 16:00 on any weekday between Monday 14 November and Friday 2 December 2011. There are no restrictions on public access on any Saturday or Sunday.

Piripaua and Whakamarino Releases cancelled

Unfortunately, Genesis Energy have advised that the recreational releases scheduled for this weekend (Saturday 5th and Sunday 6th November) from Whakamarino and Piripaua have been cancelled due to health and safety reasons.

The broken bridge in the river, which is currently posing a significant hazard to kayakers, is expected to be removed soon.

Broken Bridge, Waikaretaheke River