Author And Researcher
I'm Marios, delivering the best of Aotearoa's nature walks to your device.
I've personally walked hundreds of New Zealand's tracks and spent months in libraries uncovering interesting information on New Zealand/Aotearoa. And you'll find a slice of that research on this page - enjoy!
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The dense foliage here is topped by a canopy of tawa, rewarewa and occasional large rimu. There are some dense stands of ponga in the understorey. The area was also logged and a bush tramline constructed.
From S.H.2 turn into Barrett Road near Whakamaramara shops and service station. After 500 metres turn left into Old Highway (also signposted Whakamaramara Road) then 300 metres further, turn right into Whakamaramara Road and follow it 6.5km to Leyland Road.
Turn left and Puketoki Scenic Reserve is on the right after 800 metres. There is a large grass parking area with picnic tables on the opposite side of the road.
For the Short Loop Walk the track is wide, metalled an even. Bear left at the signpost and after 5 minutes you come to a 3-way junction. Head right along the old tramline, passing the junction where the Long Loop Track begins.
For the Long Loop Walk, bear left at the initial junction and after 5 minutes continue straight ahead at the junction with the Short Loop Track and old tramline. The track becomes more uneven and occasional tree roots protrude.
After 15 minutes cross the bridge over the stream. 15 minutes later there is a 3-minute-return detour to a large rimu tree on the left. After re-crossing the stream, the track rejoins the Short Loop Track before returning to the carpark.
In the early 1900s the Whakamaramara Land and Timber Company built a bush tramline, which crosses the reserve and now forms an evident section of the track network.
The steel tramway was aided with bridges and extended 6.5 miles to Plummers Point on the coast. Timber was loaded onto scows for transportation to Tauranga and Auckland. At first bullock teams were used to haul the trucks, but these proved too slow so steam haulers were later employed.
The mill manager Henry Havelock Sharplin donated the reserve in 1926. He originally migrated from Canterbury with his wife, seven sons and three daughters. He employed 60 people in his mill and provided a school. The mill was later sold and ceased operation in 1946.
North Island ▷ Bay of Plenty ▷ Tauranga
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Thanks to all the good people working for the NZ Department of Conservation - for all your hard work - making NZ more beautiful, accessable and healthy! Cheers 😍