Steep creeking in the Shotover River headwaters. 2-3 days, Otago.
Wairaurahiri River (II+)
2-5 day options | Fiordland
A classic moderate packrafting trip.
Aorere (III/IV) Shakespeare Flat To Brown Hut
A classic day trip off the Heaphy Track for intermediate to advanced packrafters: fun and challenging paddling with a scenic backdrop and wonderful wilderness feel. But be wary: the Aorere is notorious for how much it rises with rain. Not too surprising when you consider it has a 573km catchment, and headwaters very near the…
The Lochy River (IV & Portages)
Overnight out and return trip for advanced paddlers. In Otago, near Lake Wakatipu. Permission required
Young River (III/IV)
A great day trip for strong packrafters, in Mt Aspiring National Park.
Karamea River (V with portages)
6-8 days of remote and very advanced whitewater. Great approach & great huts. West coast, Kahurangi National Park.
Poulter River (I/II) via Casey Saddle
An ‘almost-loop’ trip through Arthurs Pass mountains and braided river valleys. There are a few options for paddling the Poulter, including continuing on down the Waimakariri Gorge. Thanks to Michael Batchelor for the information and photos to make up this trip page. Haydn Deane posted a great video of the Poulter-Waimak Gorge option on vimeo…
Takaka River (II or III) powerhouse to the bridge
This is a roadside run, which is dam controlled and very popular with all paddlers. Access Leave a car (or bikes) at the new road bridge on the Cobb valley road and drive up to the power station. Easiest to get in on the left fork assuming the turbines are all running. View Larger Topographic…
Aorere River (II) Salisbury Falls Gorge
The crystal clear Aorere cuts through the epic rock gorge at Salisbury falls, which is Takaka’s biggest and busiest swimming hole. The gorge itself runs for a few km each side of the tourist area and is an easy and spectacular trip, suitable for confident beginners. This is a short and sweet car-shuttle run, which…
The Ellery, Jackson & Arawhata Loop (I+)
A longish day trip, with a great variety of terrain and non-technical paddling.
Kaipo River II/III or up to IV
3-4 days side trip to the Hollyford Pyke, to explore a seldom visited valley.
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The Hollyford-Pyke Loop (I/II)
The most famous packrafting loop in NZ…
5-6 Days | Fiordland | Stay in DOC Huts
Hunter River (II-)
2 days hike, 1-2 days paddle.
Remote and scenic headwaters, in a seldom visited valley | Otago.
Upper Nevis River (I/III)
Roadside grade III in Otago Highcountry, with two day’s worth of paddling, hiking and biking on offer.
Needs rain to be runnable.
Lower Slate Gorge (IV) from Moonlight Flat
A low-flow daytrip to a steep and beautiful gorge
Golden Bay, Tasman
Waiatoto River (III/IV) via the Wilkin
5 Days | Camping | Wilderness Area
Challenging through trip into the Olivine Wilderness Area
The Rangitikei Canyon (II/II+) River Valley Lodge to Vinegar Hill
The headwaters of the Rangitikei run through the Kaimanawa Range, offering a classic and challenging wilderness multiday trip. A while after crossing State Highway 5 (The Napier-Taihape road) there is a short, sharp class V gorge that ends at River Valley Lodge. The “Rangitikei Canyon” begins here, and offers a very scenic 2-4 day…
Gillespie Pass circuit: Siberia Stream (I+/III-) & Wilkin River (I+)
Aspiring NP, Otago
3-5 day options
Waingaro River (IV) Forks Hut to Paynes Ford
The Waingaro in Golden bay has been run mostly as a heli- kayak trip from the forks hut but it’s probably only been run 10-15 times in total, it is definitely an exploratory type adventure run. For advanced packrafters, I’d suggest that it is bucket list material: incredibly spectacular country, prolific Whio numbers and over…