The Whangaroa Harbour is most famous for being the scene of the burning of the Boyd in 1809. Local Maori offered to lead Captain John Thompson and most of the crew ashore to show them a suitable cargo of kauri spars. Out of the ship’s sight they were slaughtered and their clothes donned for a later raid. During the boarding of the ship an explosion set it alight and it drifted and sunk. 66 of the seventy aboard died.
Do not cross the stream in times of flood. Wait until the water level subsides or return via the same track.
Follow Totara North Road for 3km from S.H.10 and turn left into Campbell Road. The start of the track is signposted on the left after 500 metres, where there is a small roadside parking bay.
The track is marked with orange triangles. From the parking bay follow the metalled Wairakau Road (the right fork) up the steep hill for 10 minutes past the locked gate.
Take the track to the left which is wide, but slippery when wet. After 20 minutes you come to a clearing.
The track then narrows and becomes very uneven on its descent to Wairakau Stream (45 minutes).
The two stream crossings are in quick succession. Wet feet are unavoidable. Do not cross the stream in times of flood. Wait until the water level subsides or return via the same track.
For the next 45 minutes to Lane Cove Hut, the track crosses waterlogged long grass on the valley floor, side streams and slips, some of which are sizeable and muddy.
There are toilets at Lane Cove Hut. The 16-bunk hut can be booked at DoC in Kerikeri.
North Island ▷ Northland ▷ Kaeo
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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 😍