Lovely walk, lots of native bush. You can walk or rent a bicycle.
The Old Coach Road is a great 3 hour ride through beaut scenery with historical info, old bridges, 2 huge railway viaducts and mostly downhill. Darren & Jane gave us top-notch Avanti bikes & drove us to the start at Horopito where we started with a visit to Smash Palace, an intriguing wander through the largest wrecking yard you'll ever find. This is the first leg of the proposed Mountain to Sea trail & well worth it. The accommodation at Station Lodge is also great, ranging from backpacker style (lovely kitchen/lounge) to 4 new ski chalets with hot tubs, very reasonably priced. A lovely town - the railway adds interest - we'd love to return in the ski season.
The local community has done a fantastic job of restoring this historic track - with more improvements planned apparently. A great family walk/ride with some stunning scenary. We hired bikes for the family from "Mountain Bike Station" in Ohakune. Darren provided awesome bikes & helpful Kiwi service. It's no push-chair track, but your efforts are rewarded with some amazing the views & great insights into the history. My 15 year-old's reaction was "Epic, I LOVED IT!" I'd recommend it as a fantastic summer ride/walk.
Just did the ride today and really enjoyed the ride, the tunnel was great!! The viaduct a bit scary at first but absolutely amazing to ride across. I rented a great bike from the Mountain Bike Station who also provided the transport. www.mountainbikestation.co.nz. I am not very fit or experienced but I made it and really enjoyed the challenge.
rode it with mtb in both directions (ohakune to horopito), nice prepared track with some muddy sections. verry well placed signs and info-boards with interesting things about the road (history - present) and nature. got everything from historic places to native bush, pine, grass, mud, stony and even river crossings (with bridges). liked it verry much.
We've done the track on MTB's and on foot, and thoroughly enjoyed it each time. The link to Horopito is now open, meaning it can be as long or short a trip as you like. The views from the old viaduct are stunning, and if you can get up there around 2pm you'll more than likely catch the Overlander travelling along the new viaduct.
Historically + culturally interesting as well as a very pretty walk. Gives info on the old railway from Wellington to Auckland.
Terrific walk if interested in plants, trees, birds and local history. Walk from campsite along side of river onto Marshal Road and then to Old Coachmans track up to rail viaducts and return - and it is being extended.