New Zealand’s nine great walks will become 10 in 2018 with the announcement of the Pike29 Memorial Track. The 45-kilometre walk is to be constructed through the Paparoa National Park on the west coast of New Zealand’s South Island. The national park will be extended by 3971 hectares to include the Pike River area as a memorial to the 29 men who perished in the 2010 mining disaster.
“The Pike29 Memorial Track will bring tourism and economic development to the West Coast, permanently protect an area of high conservation values and ensure the final resting place of the 29 miners is accessible but properly respected,” New Zealand’s Environment Minister Dr Nick Smith said.
The track will travel from Blackball to Punakaiki and include part of the existing Croesus and Pororai River tracks. Coastal Punakaiki, on the edge of the Tasman Sea, is a small settlement between the West Coast towns of Greymouth and Westport, and famed for the popular Pancake Rocks with its fascinating blowholes. The scenery of the limestone gorges of the Pororari Valley combined with views of the Tasman Coast, the Pancake Rocks, and the Southern Alps from the Moonlight Range will make it a spectacular track.
The new track will include two new 20-bed huts on the Moonlight Range and in the Pororari Valley, and will be open to walkers and mountain bikers.
The Pike29 Memorial Track will join New Zealand’s internationally renowned Great Walks list which includes the Milford Track, The Kepler, Routeburn and the Heaphy.
For more information about the walking tours, click here