Grey River Campsite

Grey River Campsite

Ashley Forest



13 Rankers Reviews

1 Face-to-Face

369 Basic Camping

5 Rangiora



Grey River Camping Ground


The road to this campsite is now open and you can drive to the campsite in a 2WD vehicle.

This campsite is in a private-commercial plantation where the forestry roads are closed to the public. There are some nice camping spots next to the Grey River. There are are good walks through the native beech forest and the mission to the summit is well worth the amazing views from the top.


Feature Value Info


South IslandCanterburyRangiora


  • Basic Camping
  • Free





  • Unpowered Campsite

    Number of tent sites - 10.


Johannes Traub's avatar

Johannes Traub

Ranking: 1/10

No access if you dont have a rangerover or something compareable, bridge is fucked up(broken), normal cars or campers have no chance to get to the campsite

Reviewed 7 months ago

Roland Hänni's avatar

Roland Hänni

Ranking: 8/10

Not easy to find. Access by a long gravel road from northwest of Forest Park only! Nice place near grey river. Not suitable for large vehicles and not ideal for tents as ground is a little muddy and partially plowed by 4WDs.
Toilet a little bit smelly, but clean and ok. Nice bushwalks and hikes around

Reviewed 9 months ago

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Daniel P's avatar

Daniel P

Ranking: 2/10

Sadly guys the road over going the river was in complete disarray. Fully demolished by I guess, the current rain. No way could a campervan or a normal car go over the road over the river. We even got our to try and see how deep it was but gosh the depth was too much for the van. I would honestly seek advice from the council or rangers if the road is good enough to drive on. We travelled 2 hours to get here and what a disappointment.

Not suitable for any other vehicle than 4x4. Roads are very dangerous and no campsite at end of road, just fast flowing river that canpervans can not get through

Reviewed 9 months ago

Dylan's avatar


Ranking: 6/10

Decent site for a free overnight stay. Multiple walk options, decent space for smaller vehicles and tents, longdrop toilet. Unfortunately we got a flat tire as we arrived at the site. We found most the sites were really muddy and had been probably abused by 4x4s. Does the job as an overnight park up and morning walk but I’d personally not visit again.

Reviewed about 1 year ago

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Florian's avatar


Ranking: 8/10

Nice location in the middle of nowhere! Very very very uneven road. Was pretty rough in a van so I wouldn’t recommend it in a larger motor home. By the river and there’s plenty of space to find a nice secluded spot between the trees. Toilet was long drop and unfortunately had too many wasps in it to be usable at the time... otherwise very nice

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Paul Cooper's avatar

Paul Cooper

Ranking: 8/10


Reviewed almost 2 years ago

Katie Marx's avatar

Katie Marx

Ranking: 8/10

An idyllic spot by the banks of a stream. After driving for about half an hour on some rather parched gravel roads it was a surprise and a delight to come across this little spot.
We were camping and found nice soft ground to set up in, complete with a layout that ensures privacy. There's also a beautiful walk up the hill through Beech trees and ferns. The river generally comes to mid shin height, so probably don't need to pack your bathers.
This might not be the place for you if you're allergic to bees as they are super thick on the ground due to a number of nearby commercial hives.
Disclaimer: we were really lucky, there on a Friday night and had the place completely to ourselves. Judging from other reviews and some of the rubbish we saw half-burned in fire pits, it might not always be as peaceful as we found it. Speaking of rubbish, quite a bit had been left around, which suggests that this might attract a different set of visitors than some other DOC sites.
Highly recommended when quiet :)

Reviewed over 2 years ago

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Eric Pollard's avatar

Eric Pollard


Ranking: 7/10

Could have been a beautiful spot. Unfortunately looks like someone was doing donuts in the grass. Or construction workers ruined the grass after removing the old drop toilet. New drop toilet! Little ways in but totally worth it. Secluded in a nice lush forest.

Reviewed about 3 years ago

Matt's avatar


New Zealand

Ranking: 6/10

We stayed here mid August on our holiday - i wouldnt say it was the easiest place to find but if you follow cramptons bush road after 20 mins or so you should find it nestled at the bottom of the valley. You will drive over a small ford just before the camp, our wee honda civic managed just fine, although at this time of the year the grassed areas were very mucky on the right side of the road, the left side by the river was fine to pitch our tent. Even in winter this seems like a popular spot. The people staying before us had left scattered possum parts all over the show, including three dead skinned bloaters beside the river and they had also left an empty container of hydraulic fluid they'd used for their fire. Please if you wish to use these “free” camps then respect the area and its surroundings and dont leave anything behind or else they wont be available to use in the future. - disappointed & concerned kiwi.

Reviewed about 3 years ago

Colin Hood's avatar

Colin Hood

Ranking: 9/10

Beautiful site amongst amazing native bush with great walks including a 3 hour track to the top of Mt Grey which starts from the camping area, I found out at the top there is another slightly shorter track as well, which I came down on that comes out by the river just before the camping area giving around a further 2 hour trek down via that track (or you can return the way I came up), it's a fairly constant decline down and can be jogged in most places where the track I came up from the camping area is more up and down but with better scenery. It's a fair hike so you need a bit of fitness and be prepared for changes in the weather, I got patchy phone signal on the tracks but nothing at the camp. The road in is shingle and potholed and corrugated in places and the directions on this app stop before the camp possibly because the roads become forestry roads not public ones as such so you have to navigate yourself the last stretch to the pin shown on the map showing the camp location. I only saw a sign for the camp once I was almost there, the camps about 11 km from where Douglas Road becomes Cramptons bush road where Dalbeg Road is, there are a few side roads, stay on Crompton's until you get to Mount Grey Road where you vere left until you come to Okuku Road which you turn right on to ( there is a sign here finally lol but you are almost at the camp area. A short drive along Okuku Road until you cross the ford at the river and its on your right just after that. It is a secluded spot a fair way from anyone with patchy or no phone coverage, muddy in places so if its wet so stick to hard ground, I had a bit of fun getting off what appeared to be a firm grassed area, I loved it, dog friendly and free, a beaut place.

Reviewed about 3 years ago

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Kendra Seamus Matilda and Oskar's avatar

Kendra Seamus Matilda and Oskar

New Zealand

Ranking: 9/10

Amazing FREE site! So many birds: wood pigeons swooping all day, tomtits and fantails following us around, bellbird song...As you drive through all the felled forestry don't get disheartened as eventually you will arrive at a beautiful native bush and yes the mission up Red Beech or Mt Grey tracks is worth every painstaking minute!! The river unfortunately was more of a stream with stagnant ponds so I would take water supplies and don't rely on swimming if staying long. Take a picnic to Lake Janet while there though...very cute! Kids loved biking around grounds and yay another dog friendly spot!! And did I mention FREE!!

Reviewed over 4 years ago

Andrew B's avatar

Andrew B

New Zealand

Ranking: 8/10

Situated at the bottom of a valley, is a gorgeous little campsite nestled amongst black beech and native fauna. Flat, sheltered ground great for tents but limited spaces for camper vans. Clean, basic and tidy with just one doc toilet. Easy to find, just drive down Douglas Rd, which turns into Compton Bush Rd, then to gravel 2/3 along the drive. Eventually you will find it clearly marked beside the road. A variety of lovely walks are on hand, with some great views. It may be closed due to logging for some short periods. Enjoy!

Reviewed almost 5 years ago

Peter Eisele's avatar

Peter Eisele


Ranking: 1/10

We really did drive down the gravel road for over half an hour until road conditions got really bad, but camping ground did not appear.
Also, camping ground was not signed anywhere.

Reviewed over 6 years ago

DOC Managed

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 😍

Nick Morrison's avatar

Nick Morrison

Rankers owner