Upper Hurunui (II) Lake to Seaward

The Hurunui is the most important River in Canterbury for paddlers. It has navigable flows all year round and offers a good variety of whitewater runs.  It has something for everyone; for learners there is a run from the Lake and through Sisters Gorge, for intermediate paddlers the Jollie Brook and Hawarden gap runs, and…

Hawarden Gap (II+) Hurunui River

The Hawarden Gap is a bit of an under-utilised gem.  12 km of Class II open gravel channel through rugged farmland has plenty of play features to practice eddies and technique before the valley constricts at the Hawarden Gap where the real fun begins. The river is aligned such that a norwester is funneled up the river…

Hurunui River Maori Gully III

This short gorge section of the Hurunui is one reason why there are so many whitewater kayakers in Canterbury. Every kayaker in Christchurch in the past 50 years has nervously faced and often swum Maori Gully. This Grade 3 section is 1.6km of varied and distinctive rapids that vary only slowly over the decades. It…

Mohaka TeHoe (III)

This is a half day run through a scenic gorge. The Te Hoe can hit Class III+ in higher flows. At low flows it’s technical boulder gardens with most (but not all) harder rapids being portageable. By Road To get to the put-in drive down Waitara road about 8km to Glenfalls. From Glenfalls continue 5km…

Mohaka McVicars to Glenfalls (I/II) to Everetts (II)

A great introduction to packrafting can be had by camping at Glenfalls on the Napier Taupo Road (SH5) and running the easy Class I /II section. On the subsequent days the Glenfalls to Everetts run steps up the difficulty to Class II. It’s got a consistent flow right through the year and will have water…

Jacksons River (II)

A beautiful and relatively easy West Coast River. Great for a cruisey days paddling, between hitting the Arawhata and Waiatoto. 😉 The Jackson would make a great and easy bike raft trip or of course you can hike, hitch or car to car paddle. It has a great side trip up to Lake Ellery on…

Okarito River (II/III)

West coast.

A car to car trip with a variety of paddling, from lake, to easy river to class III rapids to esturary!

Very scenic paddle.

Windley River (III)

A classic packrafting trip; an excellent approach over the tops, followed by clean, challenging paddling through bedrock gorges.

Alfred Stream (II)

Short and scenic, with easy access and option to make it into an overnight trip with a stay at Lake Daniell.

Dingle Burn (III+)

2 day through trip with a crux gorge in the middle.
Long car shuttle, and tricky to get the right flow.

Upper Rangitikei (III/IV)

This hard to get to and hard to time remote experience is one of the North Islands best-kept secrets. From tussock covered desert plateau to beech forest, to scrub and high country sheep station it has so much scenery packed in. It is also one of our premier trout fisheries and is protected by a…

Greenstone River (III+/IV)

Epic scenery, challenging whitewater and huge potential for creative approaches: a long day trip, an overnighter or as part of a larger mission.

Waiau River (I/II) Te Anau Control Gates to Lake Manapouri

This section provides lots of options for trips; half day trips using shuttles or walking, full day paddles, overnight options including paddling on Manapouri itself. Despite being bordered by the Kepler track on the true right and roads on the true left, it has quite a wilderness feel, with lots of options. View Larger Topographic…

Whakatane River (II)

This is a great two to four day wilderness trip through Te Urewera as described by Stu Bilby. It is suitable for paddlers with basic skills. A choice of huts or great camping each night, wild horses, beautiful forests, striking history and Tuhoe culture. Good hunting, fishing and swimming. This is a traditional canoe route…

Matiri (II+ III)

The Matiri is known as an epic kayak run when it’s in flood. More than any other river in the Murchison area, the Matiri’s character varies with flow. For packrafting, it’s a nice run at lower flows. From the end of the road you can walk several kilometres up the track towards the lake and determine…

Upper/ Mid Matakitaki (II)

The Matakitaki is one of the larger Buller tributaries. It is a popular kayak run due to it’s proximity to Murchison. There are three runs. The Lower Matakitaki, not covered here, is a portage for Packrafters (tales of broken limbs and kayak pins abound). The Mid Matakitaki is a short run that has a number…

Buller River Overview

The Buller river is one of New Zealand’s mightiest rivers. From it’s source in the Nelson Lakes to the wild West Coast at Westport it’s a spectacular beast. From the Lake it has a lovely short bouldery run across the terminal moraine that retains the Lake. It then becomes a slightly braided river for some…